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Dr. Marie Muehe

PostDoc Fellow
Earth System Sciences
2013 PhD in Environmental Sciences, University of Tuebingen, Germany
2008 Diplom in Biology, University of Tuebingen, Germany


E. Marie Muehe is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Fendorf Lab within the Earth System Science Department at Stanford University. Marie is fascinated by the intricate interplay of plants and microbial communities in metal(loid) contaminated environments. Currently, her work seeks to understand how climate change parameters affect the uptake and accumulation of toxic arsenic in rice and to this end the production and quality of this global staple in the future. At Stanford she collaborates with the Carnegie Department of Global Ecology to perform highly controlled greenhouse studies simulating the current and future climate of arsenic-affected rice producing regions in the world. Marie and her colleagues combine rice productivity data with changes in soil and pore water properties and microbial activities. Besides obtaining estimates for future rice production and quality, this works also aims to develop successful strategies to decrease arsenic uptake and accumulation in rice in the future.   
Marie received her German Diplom (equivalent to a Master) from the University of Tuebingen, Germany, in 2008. Her thesis on the interplay of rice and iron-oxidizing bacteria in arsenic contaminated water was awarded the runner-up BIOTECHNICA award for outstanding master thesis. After graduation, Marie became a fellow of the Weltwärts program of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development with which she volunteered for an environmental protection and education service in the Southern townships of Cape Town, South Africa. In 2009, Marie was awarded a German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU) fellowship and returned to the University of Tuebingen, Germany. As part of her PhD she investigated the interaction of the metal-accumulating plant A. halleri with soil bacteria to increase the efficiency of phytoremediation of cadmium-contaminated soils. Marie graduated in 2013 and became a medallist for First Honors at her Department, the University, and received a German-wide dissertation award of the Körber-Foundation. Her appointment at Stanford University is funded by the German Research Foundation and currently by a Marie Skłodowska Curie Individual Global Fellowship of the European Commission.


  • 05.2015 – 03.2016 German research foundation
  • 04.2016 – 03.2019 Marie-Sklodowska-Curie Individual Global Fellowship, H2020, European Commission, project acronym RACe


  • E. M. Muehe, A. Kappler; BIOspektrum 2016; 20(3), 316-318; Biogene Eisenminerale kontrollieren das Umweltverhalten toxischer Metalle.
  • E. M. Muehe, G. Morin, L. Scheer, P Le Pape, I. Esteve, B. Daus, A. Kappler; Environmental Science and Technology 2016; 50(5), 2281-2291; Arsenic(V) incorporation in vivianite during microbial reduction of arsenic(V)-bearing biogenic Fe(III) (oxyhydr)oxides.
  • A. Kappler, D. Emerson, J. A. Gralnick, E. E. Roden, E. M. Muehe; invited revisions for the Iron Geomicrobiology Chapter in Ehrlich’s Geomicrobiology 2015, 6th edition, editors: D. K. Newman, A. Kappler and H. L. Ehrlich
  • E. M. Muehe, C. Schmidt, J. He, T. Helle, A. Kappler; Advanced Materials Research, 2015, 1130, 652-655; Microbially supported recovery of precious metals and rare earth elements from urban household waste incineration slag.
  • E. M. Muehe, P. Weigold, I. J. Adaktylou, B. Planer-Friedrich, U. Krämer, A. Kappler, S. Behrens; Applied and Environmental Microbiology 2015; 81(6), 2173-2181; Rhizosphere microbial community composition affects cadmium and zinc uptake of the metal-hyperaccumulating plant Arabidopsis halleri.
  • E. M. Muehe, A. Kappler, C. Chaban, B. Daus, Bio-protocol 2015; 5(8), e1445.; Measuring the arsenic content and speciation in different rice tissues.
  • E. M. Muehe and A. Kappler; invited review for the research front on arsenic for Environmental Chemistry 2014; 11, 483–495; Arsenic mobility and toxicity in South and Southeast Asia – a review on biogeochemistry, health and socio-economic effects, remediation and risk predictions.
  • E. M. Muehe, J. Eisele, B. Daus, A. Kappler, K. Harter, C. Chaban; Plant Molecular Biology 2014; 85(3), 301-316; Are rice (Oryza sativa L.) phosphate transporters regulated similarly by phosphate and arsenate? – a comprehensive study
  • E. M. Muehe, M. Obst, A. Hitchcock, T. Tylsizczak, S. Behrens, C. Schroeder, J. M. Byrne, M. Michel, U. Kraemer, A. Kappler; Environmental Science and Technology 2013; 47, 14099-14109; Fate of Cd during microbial Fe(III) mineral reduction by a novel and Cd-tolerant Geobacter species.
  • E. M. Muehe, I. J. Adaktylou, M. Obst, F. Zeitvogel, S. Behrens, B. Planer-Friedrich, U. Kraemer, A. Kappler; Environmental Science and Technology 2013; 47, 13430−13439; Organic carbon and reducing conditions lead to cadmium immobilization by secondary Fe mineral formation in a pH-neutral soil.
  • E. M. Muehe, L. Scheer, B. Daus, A. Kappler; Environmental Science and Technology 2013; 47, 8297−8307; Fate of arsenic during microbial reduction of biogenic vs. abiogenic As-Fe(III)-mineral co-precipitates.
  • S. Kleinert, E. M. Muehe, N. Posth, U. Dippon, B. Daus, A. Kappler; Environmental Science and Technology 2011; 45(17), 7533–7541; Biogenic Fe(III) minerals lower the efficiency of iron mineral-based commercial filter systems for arsenic removal.
  • E. M. Muehe, S. Gerhardt, B. Schink, A. Kappler; FEMS Microbiology Ecology 2009; 70(3), 335–343; Ecophysiology and the energetic benefit of mixotrophic Fe(II) oxidation by various strains of nitrate-reducing bacteria.


  • 2016-2019 Marie-Sklodowska-Curie Individual Global Fellowship for 2+1-year Postdoc project at Stanford University followed by Eberhard Karls University Tuebingen
  • 2015-2017 DFG Postdoc fellowship for 2-year Postdoc project at Stanford University
  • 2012 Travel grant of the gender equality division at University of Tuebingen for a Postdoc application in the USA
  • 2011 DAAD student travel grant for Arsenic Conference 2011 in Vietnam
  • 2011 Goldschmidt student travel grant for Goldschmidt Conference 2011
  • 2010 Goldschmidt student travel grant for Goldschmidt Conference 2010
  • 2009-2012 DBU PhD fellowship
  • 2008-2009 Weltwaerts-Fellowship for volunteering service in South Africa
  • 2004-2005 Baden-Wuerttemberg Fellowship for study abroad program, USA


  • 2015 Participation as Young Scientist at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting, Germany
  • 2014 Medalist of the German Dissertation Award (Science) (Koerber-Foundation)
  • 2014 Outstanding Dissertation Award, Faculty of Science, Tuebingen
  • 2014 Outstanding Dissertation Award, Department of Geosciences, Tuebingen
  • 2013 Medalist for student presentations at SEGH Conference 2013, Toulouse, France
  • 2008 Medalist of the BIOTECHNICA study award for diploma thesis
  • 2008 Outstanding Poster award for diploma students, Quenstedt Celebration, University of Tuebingen