Top 100 Discoveries of 2016

Happy New Year everyone!! 2016 was a great year for the Wrighton Lab. One of our publications was selected as one of the Top 100 Discoveries of 2016. We would like to thank all of our amazing collaborators, including EMSL for making this publication possible.

Read the original publication here

Here’s to hoping 2017 is just as successful!


New article

Check out the latest publication from our awesome Ohio State shale team.

Microbial metabolisms in a 2.5-km-deep ecosystem created by hydraulic fracturing in shales

Also take a look at some of the press about our findings

H2O radio

JGI (David Gilbert): Microbial Metabolism Impacts Sustainability of Fracking Efforts

DCO: New Genus of Bacteria Found Living Inside Hydraulic Fracturing Wells

OSU news room


Latest Publication

Click on the title for link to the paper:

Unusual biology across a group comprising more than 15% of domain Bacteria

Christopher T. BrownLaura A. HugBrian C. ThomasItai SharonCindy J. CastelleAndrea SinghMichael J. WilkinsKelly C. WrightonKenneth H. Williams & Jillian F. Banfield

Also check out the authors on twitter


Ultra-small bacterial cells

Metagenomics has previously uncovered complete genomes of new phyla in an acetate- amended aquifer.  Now, we demonstrate that these uncultivated representatives are small cells and are widely diverse.

Diverse uncultivated ultra-small bacterial cells in groundwater

Birgit LuefKyle R. FrischkornKelly C. WrightonHoi-Ying N. HolmanGiovanni BirardaBrian C. ThomasAndrea SinghKenneth H. WilliamsCristina E. SiegeristSusannah G. TringeKenneth H. DowningLuis R. Comolli & Jillian F. Banfield

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Genomics resolves two new archaeal phyla

Genomic Expansion of Domain Archaea Highlights Roles for Organisms from New Phyla in Anaerobic Carbon Cycling

Cindy J. Castelle, Kelly C. Wrighton, Brian C. Thomas, Laura A. Hug, Christopher T. Brown, Michael J. Wilkins, Kyle R. Frischkorn, Susannah G. Tringe, Andrea Singh, Lye Meng Markillie, Ronald C. Taylor, Kenneth H. Williams, Jillian F. Banfield


  • Two new archaeal phyla were defined within a recently suggested superphylum
  • Complete and closed genomes have been reconstructed for uncultured Archaea
  • Uncultured Archaea with small genomes have limited metabolic capabilities
  • Novel genome compositions suggest primary roles in carbon and/or hydrogen cycling


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