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ORNL's Communications team works with news media seeking information about the laboratory. Media may use the resources listed below or send questions to news@ornl.gov.

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Alex Johs at ORNL's Spallation Neutron Source

Sometimes solutions to the biggest problems can be found in the smallest details. The work of biochemist Alex Johs at Oak Ridge National Laboratory bears this out, as he focuses on understanding protein structures and molecular interactions to resolve complex global problems like the spread of mercury pollution in waterways and the food supply.

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Biologists from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center have confirmed that microorganisms called methanogens can transform mercury into the neurotoxin methylmercury with varying efficiency across species.

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A team led by the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory has identified a novel microbial process that can break down toxic methylmercury in the environment, a fundamental scientific discovery that could potentially reduce mercury toxicity levels and sup...

By wet-sieving stream sediment, (from left) Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Kenneth Lowe, Melanie Mayes and John Dickson sort sediment into different particle size in this stream near Rocky Top.

An Oak Ridge National Laboratory study is providing an unprecedented watershed-scale understanding of mercury in soils and sediments. Researchers focused on evaluating mercury and soil properties along the banks of a mercury-contaminated stream in Oak Ridge, Tenn., sampling 145 loca...

Andrew King loads a gel with amplified gene fragments to detect the presence of mercury methylation genes in samples from East Fork Poplar Creek in Oak Ridge.

Environmental scientists can more efficiently detect genes required to convert mercury in the environment into more toxic methylmercury with molecular probes developed by researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory. “We now have a quic...