Faculty, Staff and Students

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Andrew D. Czaja

Title: Assistant Professor, Precambrian Paleobiology and Geochemistry
Office: 506 Geology-Physics Building
Tel: 513-556-3574
Email: andrew.czaja@uc.edu
Web: http://www.andyczaja.com/

Precambrian Paleobiology and Biogeochemistry: Early evolution of life on Earth; Archean fossil record of South Africa and Australia; Astrobiology; geologic record of microbial metabolic evolution; Mesoproterozoic terrestrial microbial ecosystems; kerogen geochemistry; in situ morphological and geochemical analyses of Precambrian microfossils.

Research Information

Research Support

  • (PI), Czaja, Andrew, Exploration of the 2.5-billion-year-old Biosphere of South Africa., National Geographic Society. (GRANT W323-14), $10,680.00. 06/09/2014 to 05/31/2015. Status: Awarded.
  • (Collaborator), Czaja, Andrew; Dunning, Nicholas; Hamilton, Trinity; Lentz, David; Scarborough, Vernon, Novel Molecular and Geochemical Analyses of Reservoir Sediments at the Ancient Maya City of Tikal, National Science Foundation. (BCS-1642547), $34,937.00. 09/01/2016 to 08/31/2017. Status: Active.
  • (Collaborator), Czaja, Andrew; Diefendorf, Aaron; Hamilton, Trinity; Havig, Jeff, Midwest Geobiology Conference , National Aeronautics and Space Administration. (OSGC Student-Innovative-Creative-Hands-on Project (SICHOP) grant), $2,000.00. 06/06/2016 to 12/31/2016. Status: Awarded.
  • (PI), Czaja, Andrew, 5th Annual Midwest Geobiology Symposium , The Paleontological Society. (PaleoSoc2016), $1,000.00. 10/14/2016 to 10/15/2017. Status: Awarded.
  • (PI), Czaja, Andrew, Water Quality and Its Impact on Pre-Industrial Civilization: Diatom, Microbiome and Microbotanical Analyses of Reservoir Sediments from the Ancient Maya City of Tikal, UC's University Research Council. (URC Interdisciplinary AY2016-17), $49,838.00. 03/28/2017 to 06/30/2018. Status: Active.

Publications

Peer-reviewed Publications

  • Schopf, J. W., Kudryavtsev, A. B., Agresti, D. G., Wdowiak, T. J., & Czaja, A. D. (2002). Images of the Earth's earliest fossils? Reply. Nature, 420 (3), 477.
  • Schopf, J. W., Kudryavtsev, A. B., Agresti, D. G., Wdowiak, T. J., & Czaja, A. D. (2002). Laser-Raman imagery of Earth's earliest fossils. Nature, 416 (3), 73–76.
  • Cardon, Z. G., Czaja, A. D., Funk, J. L., & Vitt, P. L. (2002). Periodic carbon flushing to roots of Quercus rubra saplings affects soil respiration and rhizosphere microbial biomass. Oecologia, 133, 215–233.
  • Jones, C. S., Cardon, Z. G., & Czaja, A. D. (2003). A phylogenetic view of low-level CAM in Pelargonium (Geraniaceae). American Journal of Botany, 90 (1), 135–142.
  • Schopf, J. W., Kudryavtsev, A. B., Agresti, D. G., Czaja, A. D., & Wdowiak, T. J. (2005). Raman imagery: a new approach to assess the geochemical maturity and biogenicity of permineralized Precambrian fossils. Astrobiology, 5 (3), 333–371.
  • Czaja, A. D., Kudryavtsev, A. B., & Schopf, J. W. (2006). New method for the microscopic, nondestructive acquisition of ultraviolet resonance Raman spectra from plant cell walls. Applied Spectroscopy, 60 (4), 352–355.
  • Schopf, J. W., Kudryavtsev, A. B., Czaja, A. D., & Tripathi, A. B. (2007). Evidence of Archean life: stromatolites and microfossils. Precambrian Research, 158 (3–4), 141–155.
  • Czaja, A. D., Kudryavtsev, A. B., Cody, G. D., & Schopf, J. W. (2009). Characterization of permineralized kerogen from an Eocene fossil fern. Organic Geochemistry, 40 (3), 353–364.
  • Czaja, A. D., Johnson, C. M., Beard, B. L., Eigenbrode, J. L., Freeman, K. H., & Yamaguchi, K. E. (2010). Iron and carbon isotope evidence for ecosystem and environmental diversity in the ~2.7 to 2.5 Ga Hamersley Province, Western Australia. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 292 (1–2), 170–180.
  • Czaja, A. D., Johnson, C. M., Yamaguchi, K. E., & Beard, B. L. (2012). Comment on "Abiotic Pyrite Formation Produces a Large Fe Isotope Fractionation". Science, 335 (6068), 538.
  • Czaja, A. D., Johnson, C. M., Roden, E. E., Beard, B. L., Voegelin, A. R., Nägler, T. F., Beukes, N. J., & Wille, M. (2012). Evidence for free oxygen in the Neoarchean ocean based on coupled iron–molybdenum isotope fractionation. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta, 86 (1–2), 118–137.
  • Li, W., Czaja, A.D., Van Kranendonk, M.J., Beard, B.L., Roden, E.E, and Johnson, C.M. (2013). An anoxic, Fe(II)-rich, U-poor ocean 3.46 billion years ago. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta, 120, 65-79.
  • Shen-Miller, J., Aung, L.H., Turek, J., Schopf, J.W., Tholandi, M., Yang, M., and Czaja, A.D. (2013). Centuries-old viable fruits of Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn var. China Antique. Tropical Plant Biology, 6 (2-3), 53-68.
  • Czaja, A.D., Johnson, C.M., Beard, B.L., Roden, E.E., Li, W., and Moorbath, S. (2013). Biological Fe oxidation controlled deposition of banded iron formation in the ca. 3,770 Ma Isua Supracrustal Belt (West Greenland) . Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 363, 192-203.
  • Czaja, A.D. , Beukes, N.J. , and Osterhout, J.T. (2016). Sulfur-oxidizing bacteria prior to the Great Oxidation Event from the 2.52 Ga Gamohaan Formation of South Africa. Geology, 44 (12), 983-986. [Link]
  • d'Abzac, F.-X., Czaja, A.D., Beard, B.L., Schauer, J.J. , and Johnson, C.M. (2014). Iron distribution in size-resolved aerosols generated by UV-femtosecond laser ablation: Influence of cell geometry and implications for in situ isotopic determination by LA-MC-ICP-MS. Geostandards and Geoanalytical Research, 38 (3), 293-309.
  • Wilmeth, D.T., Dornbos, S.Q., Isbell, J.L., and Czaja, A.D. (2014). Putative domal microbial structures in fluvial siliciclastic facies of the Mesoproterozoic (1.09 Ga) Copper Harbor Conglomerate, Upper Peninsula of Michigan, USA. Geobiology, 12, 99-108.
  • d'Abzac, F.-X., Beard, B.L., Czaja, A.D., Konishi, H., Schauer, J., and Johnson, C.M. (2013). Iron isotope composition of particles produced by UV-femtosecond laser ablation of natural oxides, sulfides, and carbonates.. Analytical Chemistry, 85, 11885-11892.

Invited Publications

  • Czaja, A. D. (2010). Microbes and the rise of oxygen,. Nature Geoscience,, 3 ((3):), 522–523.
  • Czaja, A. D. (2010). Review of "Astrobiology of Earth: The Emergence, Evolution, and Future of Life on a Planet in Turmoil", by Joseph Gale,. Quarterly Review of Biology,, 85 ((1):), 88.

Published Abstracts

  • Czaja, A. D., Cody, G. D., & Schopf, J. W. (2004). Turning ferns into fossils: biogeochemical alchemy[Abstract]. PaleoBios, 24 (S1), 1–2.
  • Czaja, A. D., Cody, G. D., & Schopf, J. W. (2004). Turning ferns into fossils: biogeochemical alchemy[Abstract]. International Journal of Astrobiology, 3 (Suppl. S1), 27.
  • Czaja, A. D. (2006). Spectroscopic analysis of the thermal alteration of permineralized organic matter[Abstract]. Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere, 36 (3), 311.
  • Czaja, A. D., Kudryavtsev, A. B., Cody, G. D., & Schopf, J. W. (2008). Similar fossil ferns having dissimilar organic geochemical preservation[Abstract]. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta, 72 (12, S1), A193.
  • Czaja, A. D., Johnson, C. M., Beard, B. L., & Van Kranendonk, M. J. (2010). Iron isotopes reveal an abiological origin for a 2.75 Ga BIF from the Yilgarn Craton, Western Australia[Abstract]. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta, 74 (12, S1), A201.

Book Chapters

  • Schopf, J. W., Kudryaytsev, A. B., Tripathi, A. B., & Czaja, A. D. (2011). Three-Dimensional Morphological (CLSM) and Chemical (Raman) Imagery of Cellularly Mineralized Fossils. In Allison, P. A.; Bottjer, D. J. (Eds.), Taphonomy: Process and Bias Through Time, 2nd Ed. (pp.457-486). New York: Springer.

Presentations & Lectures

Invited Presentations

  • Czaja, A. D.; Johnson, C. M.; Roden, E. E.; Beard, B. L.; Voegelin, A. R.; Nägler, T. F.; Beukes, N. J.; Wille, M. (10/27/2011). Evidence for significant free oxygen in the ocean prior to the Paleoproterozoic Great Oxidation Event Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences Colloquium, University of Illinois, Chicago.
  • Czaja, A. D.; Johnson, C. M.; Roden, E. E.; Beard, B. L.; Voegelin, A. R.; Nägler, T. F.; Beukes, N. J.; Wille, M. (09/09/2011). Evidence for significant free oxygen in the ocean prior to the ~2.4 Ga Great Oxidation Event Deparment of Geoscience Weeks Lecture, University of Wisconsin–Madison.
  • Czaja, A. D.; Johnson, C. M.; Roden, E. E.; Beard, B. L.; Voegelin, A. R.; Nägler, T. F.; Beukes, N. J.; Wille, M. (01/31/2011). Evidence for free oxygen in the Neoarchean ocean Gordon Research Conference on Geobiology, Ventura, CA.
  • Czaja, A. D.; Johnson, C. M.; Beard, B. L.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Freeman, K. H.; Yamaguchi, K. E. (11/12/2009). Iron and carbon isotope evidence for ecosystem and environmental diversity in the ~2.7 to 2.5 Ga Hamersley Province, Western Australia Department of Geosciences Colloquium, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee.
  • Czaja, A. D.; Kudryavtsev, A. B.; Cody, G. D.; Schopf, J. W. (05/11/2006). Understanding the paleobiological afterlife: a modern approach to an ancient problem Division of Geological and Planetary Science GeoClub Seminar, California Insitute of Technology.
  • Czaja, A. D.; Kudryavtsev, A. B.; Cody, G. D.; Schopf, J. W. (02/21/2006). Understanding the paleobiological afterlife: a spectroscopic comparison of modern and permineralized plant axes Carnegie Institution of Washington, Washinton, D.C..
  • Czaja, A. D.; Cody, G. D.; Schopf, J. W. (06/14/2004). Illuminating the black box that is fossil kerogen NASA Astrobiology Institute Forum for Astrobiological Research seminar series, Los Angeles, CA.

Honors & Awards

  • Eugene Waggoner Scholarship for Sustained Academic Achievement,, UCLA, Department of Earth and Space Sciences, 2005.
  • Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher of the Year,, University of Connecticut, Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, 1999.
  • Phi Beta Kappa, Inducted into Epsilon of Connecticut Chapter, 1997.
  • Lewis and Clark Field Scholar in Astrobiology,, American Philosophical Society, 2010.
  • Dissertation Year Fellowship,, University of California, Los Angeles, 2005.
  • Student Research Grant,, Geological Society of America, 2004.
  • Grant-in-Aid of Research,, Sigma Xi, 2002.
  • Graduate Research Fellowship,, National Science Foundation, 2000 to 2003.
  • National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship (declined), 2000.
  • Center for the Study of Evolution and the Origin of Life Fellowship,, Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, UCLA, 2000 to 2002.