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Preeminent Microbiologist to Speak at Clayton State on the Magic of Microbes from Bioremediation to Bioterrorism

Mar 13 2015

Ronald AtlasOne of the world’s preeminent microbiologists, Ronald Atlas, will be speaking at Clayton State University as part of the Woods Distinguished Lecture Series on Monday, Mar. 30.

Atlas’ presentation, "From bioremediation of oil spills to bioterrorism: The magic of microbes" will run from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in room UC272 of the James M. Baker University Center, as is free and open to the public.

Atlas is appearing at Clayton State at the invitation of Clayton State President Dr. Thomas Hynes, a personal friend of the renowned scientist. The former president of the American Society for Microbiology who is frequently called to the White House for advice, as a graduate student at Rutgers University Atlas discovered how to use microbes to clean up oil spills, thereby pioneering the field of bioremediation.


From Rutgers, Atlas went on to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to perform studies on life detection on Mars and later to head NASA’s Planetary Protection Board. As oil spills continued to pollute the environment, he found himself diving under the Arctic polar ice, landing on the bow of the Exxon Valdez, and skimming through the Gulf of Mexico on an airboat following the BP disaster. He also has become a leading expert on bioterrorism and has served on the Department of Homeland Security’s scientific advisory board as well as advising the White House and the Congress on how to protect the public against the looming threat of bioterrorism and infectious diseases like Ebola.

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