Marine Biological Laboratory
Dr. Vallino’s research began in chemical engineering in the field that is now known as Systems Biology; in particular he was one of the founding investigators in developing and applying flux balance analysis for metabolic engineering objectives. Over the last two decades he has extended Systems Biology approaches for understanding biogeochemistry orchestrated by microbial communities using a distributed metabolic network as a framework to interpret and model functional gene expression of a community. He currently employs control theory, computational science and non-equilibrium thermodynamics to predict functional gene expression governing mass and energy flow in microbial communities. New theories and computational algorithms are tested using a combination of microcosm experiments and field-based observations. Dr. Vallino received his Ph.D. at MIT, and then expanded his research focus to natural microbial communities as a Mellon Postdoctoral Scholar at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and a Lakian Postdoctoral Scholar at the Marine Biological Laboratory. He is currently a Senior Scientist at MBL.