8 Scopus citations


In this chapter we examine the factors that determine the transport of microorganisms and nucleic acids through soil and the subsurface. These include microbial adhesion to and detachment from solid surfaces, which are governed by the physicochemical properties of both the porous medium surfaces and the surrounding solution; the surface properties of the microbe; and the impact of water saturation and flow on movement. We also discuss novel approaches to facilitate microbial transport including ultramicrobacteria, surfactants and gene transfer. Subsequently, microbial transport studies are documented including column laboratory studies, field studies and the use of tracers to validate transport. Finally, mathematical models for microbial transport are described including advection-dispersion models and filtration models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEnvironmental Microbiology
Subtitle of host publicationThird Edition
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)9780123946263
StatePublished - 2015


  • Column transport studies
  • Gene transfer
  • Microbial adhesion
  • Microbial tracers
  • Microbial transport
  • Models for microbial transport
  • Surfactants
  • Ultramicrobacteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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