We know that the human microbiome, and therefore human health and well-being, is affected by the environmental microbiome. Urban residents spend on average 80% of their time indoors, in highly engineered environments. In collaboration with the Yale Center for Ecosystems in Architecture, we seek to understand whether plant-based bioremediation walls and infrastructure can be optimized to augment the indoor microbiome.
In the era of computational genomics, a great deal of progress has been made in determining the relationships between genetic information and the development of multicellular organisms: plants, animals, humans. But what’s become most clear from this research is that all these organisms owe meaningful aspects of their development and phenotype to interactions with the microorganisms—bacteria or fungi—with which they live in symbiosis. Although it’s far from fully understood, contemporary research can conclude that human health is closely linked to the state of its microbiome. We also know that the human microbiome is affected by the environmental microbiome.
Urban residents spend on average 80% of their time indoors, in highly engineered environments. We know that farm-like microbiomes are better than urban microbiomes, can we make our indoor spaces look like forests on the microbial scale?
Green walls are well established in the architectural design field as a proposed solution for indoor air quality, however there are still fundamental questions that persist in terms of understanding how these systems behave at the microbial level, questions that are critical to the future design, evaluation and adoption of greenwall infrastructure. In collaboration with the Yale Center for Ecosystems in Architecture, we seek to understand whether green wall infrastructure can be optimized to augment the indoor microbiome with plant-associated, beneficial microbial species.
Interested in this project? We are looking for students and collaborators with experience in molecular biology, computational biology, microbiology, architecture, and material science. Reach out!