Pia Moisander, PhD she/her/hers



Research Website



Violette Research 209


2002University of North Carolina Chapel HillPhD in Marine Science
1996University of Helsinki, FinlandMS in Limnology


  • Marine Microbiology
  • General Microbiology Laboratory
  • Biology of Cells Laboratory




Research activities

  • Office of Naval Research, Marine Undersea Technology Research Program. Advances in marine technology: New solutions to biofouling. 2020-2023.
  • University-Industry Collaborative Seed Funding Program. Assessment of biological fate of microplastics discharged from wastewater treatment plants in Massachusetts
  • Boston Engineering Corporation (Naval Sea Systems). Influence of UV light on marine biofilms. 2016-2019
  • EAGER: Collaborative Research: Detection limit in oceanic nitrogen fixation measurements - Constraints of rates from the mesopelagic ocean. NSF-Chemical Oceanography. 2017-2018.
  • Microbial associations in zooplankton: significance for the marine nitrogen cycle. NSF-Biological Oceanography. Sep 15, 2011 - August 31, 2016


Research awards

  • $ 5,000 awarded by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution for Developing Flow Cytometry as a Monitoring Tool for Detection of Micro-and Nanoplastics in Seawater
  • $ 399,666 awarded by Office of Naval Research for UMassD MUST I: Advances in Underwater Marine Technology: New Solutions to Biofouling
  • $ 197,813 awarded by Office of Naval Research for UMassD MUST I: Anti-biofouling Property and Lifetime of Super-Hydrophobic Surfaces in Marine Environment


Research interests

  • Marine microbial ecology
  • Marine nitrogen cycle
  • Marine biofouling
  • Cyanobacterial blooms

Select publications

Pia H. Moisander, PhD is a Professor at the Department of Biology and holds an Affiliate position at the Department of Estuarine and Ocean Sciences, School of Marine Science and Technology. 

Her research interests include marine microbial ecology, with emphasis on the microbial influence in marine biogeochemical cycles; specifically, the nitrogen cycle. The research combines molecular, genomic, microbiological, and biogeochemical approaches. Recent research focus on marine zooplankton microbiomes, nitrogen fixation, and biofilms.

Dr. Moisander has authored >60 peer-reviewed publications and has received grant support from sources including NSF Biological Oceanography, NSF Chemical Oceanography, NSF Division of Environmental Biology, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, USGS, US Department of Energy, and via contracts with several private and non-profit organizations.
Past awards include an ASLA-Fulbright fellowship and a National Research Council Research Associateship at the NASA Ames Research Center.

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