Office: 313 Barnard Hall
Specialty: Microbial ecology

Luke McKay

Luke is originally from Alabama where he completed a bachelors degree in molecular biology from University of Alabama-Birmingham. He received his master’s and doctorate degrees from the Department of Marine Sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he studied microbial ecology at hydrothermal seeps in Guaymas Basin, Gulf of California.

Luke joined MSU in 2015 as a NASA postdoctoral fellow through the NASA Astrobiology Institute, studying primitive microbial processes in Yellowstone National Park. His research focuses onmetagenomics, metatranscriptomics, stable isotope probing enrichments, and cultivation techniques to examine the distribution, functional capacity, and substrate utilization of novel archaea and bacteria in geothermal ecosystems.

In 2018, Luke was appointed to an assistant research professor position in MSU's Department of Land Resources and Environmental Sciences. When not pondering the probability of extraterrestrial life,Luke enjoys music, dancing, and snowboarding. 

Related Links

Luke's science website

“Methane and sulfur metabolisms collide in the Korarchaeota” Blog post in Nature Microbiology Community