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Charles W. Greer


Collaborating member

Department of Natural Resource Sciences, Université McGill

Université McGill
Quebec, Canada
H9X 3V9





Research Themes

  • Bio-remediation technologies for the treatment of contaminated soil and water
  • Environmental metagenomics
  • Microbial diversity and monitoring of changes in structure and function in natural and contaminated environments
  • Microbial ecology and activity of bacteria in the degradation of organic pollutants

Scientific communications

Edge, T.A., Baird, D.J., Bilodeau, G., Gagné, N., Greer, C.W., Konkin, D., Newton, G., Séguin, A., Beaudette, L., Bilkhu, S., Bush, A., Chen, W., Comte, J., Condie, J., Crevecoeur, S., El-Kayssi, N., Emilson, E.J.S., Fancy, D.-L., Kandalaft, I., Khan, I.U.H., King, I., Kreutzweiser, D., Lapen, D., Lawrence, J., Lowe, C., Lung, O., Martineau, C., Meier, M., Odgen, N., Paré, D., Phillips, L., Porter, T.M., Sachs, J., Staley, Z., Steeves, R., Venier, L., Veres, T., Watson, C., Watson, S., Macklin, J., 2020. The Ecobiomics project: Advancing metagenomics assessment of soil health and freshwater quality in Canada. Science of the Total Environment, 710, 135906. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.135906.

Johannesson, S.C., Greer, C.W., Hannah, C.G., King, T.L., Lee, K., Pawlowicz, R., Wright, C.A., 2020. Fate of diluted bitumen spilled in the coastal waters of British Columbia, Canada. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 150, 110691. DOI: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2019.110691.

Altshuler, I., Ronholm, J., Layton, A., Onstott, T.C., Greer, C.W., Whyte, L., 2019. Denitrifiers, nitrogen-fixing bacteria and N2O soil gas flux in high Arctic ice-wedge polygon cryosols. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 95(5), fiz049. DOI: 10.1093/femsec/fiz049.

Chan-Yam, K., Goordial, J., Greer, C.W., Davila, A., McKay, C.P., Whyte, L., 2019. Microbial activity and habitability of an Antarctic dry Vvalley water track. Astrobiology, 19(6): 757-770. DOI: 10.1089/ast.2018.1884.

Jugnia, L.-B., Manno, D., Dodard, S., Greer, C.W., Hendry, M., 2019. Manipulating redox conditions to enhance in situ bioremediation of RDX in groundwater at a contaminated site. Science of the Total Environment, 676: 368-377. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.04.045.

Pagé, A.P., Tremblay, J., Masson, L., Greer, C.W., 2019. Nitrogen- and phosphorus-starved Triticum aestivum show distinct belowground microbiome profiles. PLoS one, 14(2), e0210538. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0210538.

Pérez-Carrascal, O.M., Terrat, Y., Giani, A., Fortin, N., Greer, C.W., Tromas, N., Shapiro, B.J., 2019. Coherence of Microcystis species revealed through population genomics. ISME Journal, 13: 2887–2900. DOI: 10.1038/s41396-019-0481-1.

Schreiber, L., Fortin, N., Tremblay, J., Wasserscheid, J., Elias, M., Mason, J., Sanschagrin, S., Cobanli, S., King, T.L., Lee, K., Greer, C.W., 2019. Potential for microbially mediated natural attenuation of diluted bitumen on the coast of British Columbia (Canada). Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 85(10), e00086-19. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.00086-19.

Tremblay, J., Fortin, N., Elias, M., Wasserscheid, J., King, T.L., Lee, K., Greer, C.W., 2019. Metagenomic and metatranscriptomic responses of natural oil degrading bacteria in the presence of dispersants. Environmental Microbiology, 21(7): 2307-2319. DOI: 10.1111/1462-2920.14609.

Tremblay, J., Greer, C.W., 2019. Metagenomic data mining in oil spill studies. Pages 211-223 in Moo-Young, M. (Editor). Comprehensive Biotechnology, Volume 6: Environmental and Related Biotechnologies. Elsevier.

Vergeynst, L., Greer, C.W., Mosbech, A., Gustavson, K., Meire, L., Poulson, K.G., Christensen, J.H., 2019. Biodegradation, photo-oxidation, and dissolution of petroleum compounds in an arctic fjord during summer. Environmental Science & Technology, 53(21): 12197-12206. DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.9b03336.

Lay, C.-Y., Bell, T., Hamel, C., Harker, K.N., Mohr, R., Greer, C.W., Yergeau, E., St-Arnaud, M., 2018. Canola root–associated microbiomes in the Canadian Prairies. Frontiers in Microbiology, 9, 1188. DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2018.01188.

Raymond-Bouchard, I., Tremblay, J., Altshuler, I., Greer, C.W., Whyte, L., Shapiro, N., 2018. Comparative transcriptomics of cold growth and adaptive features of a eury- and steno-psychrophile. Frontiers in Microbiology, 9, 1565. DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2018.01565.

Stefani, F., Isabel, N., Morency, M.-J., Lamothe, M., Nadeau, S., Lachance, D., Li, E.H.Y., Greer, C.W., Yergeau, E., Pinno, B.D., Séguin, A., 2018. The impact of reconstructed soils following oil sands exploitation on aspen and its associated belowground microbiome. Scientific Reports, 8, 2761. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-20783-6.

Tromas, N., Taranu, Z.E., Martin, B.D., Willis, A., Fortin, N., Greer, C.W., Shapiro, B.J., 2018. Niche separation increases with genetic distance among bloom-forming cyanobacteria. Frontiers in Microbiology, 9, 438. DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2018.00438.

Yergeau, E., Tremblay, J., Joly, S., Labrecque, M., Maynard, C., Pitre, F.E., St-Arnaud, M., Greer, C.W., 2018. Soil contamination alters the willow root and rhizosphere metatranscriptiome and the root - rhizosphere interactome. ISME Journal(12): 869-884. DOI: 10.1038/s41396-017-0018-4 .

Goordial, J., Davila, A., Greer, C.W., Cannam, R., DiRuggiero, J., McKay, C.P., Whyte, L., 2017. Comparative activity and functional ecology of permafrost soils and lithic niches in a hyper-arid polar desert. Environmental Microbiology, 19(2): 443-458. DOI: 10.1111/1462-2920.13353.

Greer, C.W., Juck, D.F., 2017. Bioremediation of petroleum hydrocarbon spills in cold terrestrial environments. Pages 645-660 in Margesin, R. (Editor). Psychrophiles: From Biodiversity to Biotechnology. Springer International Publishing. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-57057-0.

Jugnia, L.B., Beaumier, D., Holdner, J., Delisle, S., Greer, C.W., Hendry, M., 2017. Enhancing the potential for in situ bopremediation of RDX contaminated soil from a former military demolition range . Soil and Sediment Contamination: An International Journal, 26(11): 1-14. DOI: 10.1080/15320383.2017.1410097 .

Tremblay, J., Yergeau, E., Fortin, N., Cobanli, S.E., Elias, M., King, T.L., Lee, K., Greer, C.W., 2017. Chemical dispersants enhance the activity of oil and gas condensate - degrading marine bacteria. ISME Journal, 11(12): 2793-2808. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2017.129 .

Tromas, N., Fortin, N., Bedrani, L., Terrat, Y., Cardoso, P., Bird, D., Greer, C.W., Shapiro, B.J., 2017. Characterising and predicting cyanobacterial blooms in an 8-year amplicon sequencing time course. ISME Journal, 11(8): 1746-1763. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2017.58.

Yergeau, E., Michel, C., Julien, T., Niemi, A., King, T.L., Wyglinski, J., Lee, K., Greer, C.W., 2017. Metagenomic survey of the taxonomic and functional microbial communities of seawater and sea ice from the Canadian Arctic. Scientific Reports, 7: 42242. DOI: 10.1038/srep42242.

Beaudoin-Nadeau, M., Gagné, A., Bissonnette, C., Bélanger, P.-A., Fortin, A., Roy, S., Greer, C.W., Khasa, D., 2016. Performance of ectomycorrhizal alders exposed to specific Canadian oil sands tailing stressors under in vivo bipartite symbiotic conditions. Canadian Journal of Microbiology, 62(7): 543-549. DOI: 10.1139/cjm-2015-0703.

Callender, K.L., Roy, S., Khasa, D., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2016. Actinorhizal alder phytostabilization alters microbial community dynamics in gold mine waste rock from Northern Quebec: a greenhouse study. PLoS one, 11(2): e0150181. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0150181.

Garneau, M.-È., Michel, C., Meisterhans, G., Fortin, N., King, T.L., Greer, C.W., Lee, K., 2016. Hydrocarbon biodegradation by Arctic sea-ice and sub-ice microbial communities during microcosm experiments, Northwest Passage (Nunavut, Canada). FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 92(10). DOI: 10.1093/femsec/fiw130.

Goordial, J., Davila, A., Lacelle, D., Pollard, W., Marinova, M.M., Greer, C.W., DiRuggiero, J., McKay, C.P., Whyte, L., 2016. Nearing the cold-arid limits of microbial life in permafrost of an upper dry valley, Antarctica. ISME Journal, 10: 1613-1624. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2015.239.

Goordial, J., Raymond-Bouchard, I., Riley, R., Ronholm, J., Shapiro, N., Woyke, T., LaButti, K.M., Tice, H., Amirebrahimi, M., Grigoriev, I.V., Greer, C.W., Bakermans, C., Whyte, L., 2016. Improved high-quality draft genome sequence of the eurypsychrophile Rhodotorula sp. JG1b, isolated from permafrost in the hyperarid upper-elevation McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica. Genome Announcements, 4(2): e00069-16. DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.00069-16.

Goordial, J., Raymond-Bouchard, I., Zolotarov, Y., de Bethencourt, L., Ronholm, J., Shapiro, N., Woyke, T., Stromvik, M., Greer, C.W., Bakermans, C., Whyte, L., 2016. Cold adaptive traits revealed by comparative genomic analysis of the eurypsychrophile Rhodococcus sp. JG3 isolated from high elevation McMurdo Dry Valley permafrost, Antarctica. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 92(2): fiv154. DOI: 10.1093/femsec/fiv154.

Lévesque, B., Gervais, M.-C., Chevalier, P., Gauvin, D., Anassour-Laouan-Sidi, E., Gingras, S., Fortin, N., Brisson, G., Greer, C.W., Bird, D., 2016. Exposure to cyanobacteria: acute health effects associated with endotoxins. Public Health, 134: 98-101. DOI: 10.1016/j.puhe.2015.11.027.

Tardif, S., Yergeau, E., Tremblay, J., Legendre, P., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2016. The willow microbiome is influenced by soil petroleum-hydrocarbon concentration with plant compartment-specific effects. Frontiers in Microbiology, 7(14): 1363. DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.01363.

Auffret, M., Yergeau, E., Labbé, D., Fayolle-Guichard, F., Greer, C.W., 2015. Importance of Rhodococcus strains in a bacterial consortium degrading a mixture of hydrocarbons, gasoline, and diesel oil additives revealed by metatranscriptomic analysis. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 99(5): 2419-2430. DOI: 10.1007/s00253-014-6159-8.

Bell, T., Greer, C.W., Yergeau, E., 2015. Metagenomics Potential for Bioremediation. Pages 429-439 in Nelson, K.E. (Editor). Encyclopedia of Metagenomics. Genes, Genomes and Metagenomes: Basics, Methods, Databases and Tools. Springer US. DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4899-7478-5_123.

Fortin, N., Munoz-Ramos, V., Bird, D., Lévesque, B., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2015. Toxic cyanobacterial bloom triggers in Missisquoi Bay, Lake Champlain, as determined by next-generation sequencing and quantitative PCR. Life, 5: 1346-1380. DOI: 10.3390/life5021346.

Lamarche-Gagnon, G., Comery, R., Greer, C.W., Whyte, L., 2015. Evidence of in situ microbial activity and sulphidogenesis in perennially sub-0 °C and hypersaline sediments of a high arctic permafrost spring. Extremophiles, 19(1): 1-15. DOI: 10.1007/s00792-014-0703-4.

Maghsoudi, E., Fortin, N., Greer, C.W., Duy, S.V., Fayad, P., Sauvé, S., Prévost, M., Dorner, S., 2015. Biodegradation of multiple microcystins and cylindrospermopsin in clarifier sludge and a drinking water source: Effects of particulate attached bacteria and phycocyanin. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 120: 409-417. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoenv.2015.06.001.

Pagé, A.P., Yergeau, E., Greer, C.W., 2015. Salix purpurea stimulates the expression of specific bacterial xenobiotic degradation genes in a soil contaminated with hydrocarbons. PLoS one, 10(7): e0132062. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0132062.

Yergeau, E., Bell, T., Champagne, J., Maynard, C., Tardif, S., Tremblay, J., Greer, C.W., 2015. Transplanting soil microbiomes leads to lasting effects on willow growth, but not on the rhizosphere microbiome. Frontiers in Microbiology, 6(1436). DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2015.01436.

Yergeau, E., Maynard, C., Sanschagrin, S., Champagne, J., Juck, D., Lee, K., Greer, C.W., 2015. Microbial community composition, functions and activities in the Gulf of Mexico, one year after the Deepwater Horizon accident. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 81(17): 5855-5866. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.01470-15.

Yeung, C.W., Lee, K., Cobanli, S., King, T., Bugden, J., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2015. Characterization of the microbial community structure and the physicochemical properties of produced water and seawater from the Hibernia oil production platform. Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 22(22): 17697-17715. DOI: 10.1007/s11356-015-4947-z.

Zappelini, C., Battle, K., Foulon, J., Lacercat-Didier, L., Maillard, F., Valot, B., Blaudez, D., Cazaux, D., Gilbert, D., Yergeau, E., Greer, C.W., Chalot, M., 2015. Diversity and complexity of microbial communities from a chlor-alkali tailings dump. Soil Biology & Biochemistry, 90: 101-110. DOI: 10.1016/j.soilbio.2015.08.008.

Allan, J., Ronholm, J., Mykytczuk, N.C.S., Whyte, L., Onstott, T.C., Greer, C.W., 2014. Methanogen community composition and rates of methane consumption in Canadian High Arctic permafrost soils. Environmental Microbiology Reports, 6(2): 136-144. DOI: 10.1111/1758-2229.12139.

Bissonnette, C., Fahlman, B., Peru, K.M., Khasa, D.P., Greer, C.W., Headley, J.V., Roy, S., 2014. Symbiosis with Frankia sp. benefits the establishment of Alnus viridis ssp. crispa and Alnus incana ssp. rugosa in tailings sand from the Canadian oil sands industry. Ecological Engineering, 68: 167–175. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoleng.2014.03.061.

Frank-Fahle, B., Yergeau, E., Greer, C.W., Lantuit, H., Wagner, D., 2014. Microbial functional potential and community composition in permafrost-affected soils of the NW canadian Arctic. PLoS one, 9(1): e84761. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0084761.

Khasa, D., Baudoin-Nadeau, M., Roy, S., Greer, C.W., 2014. Phytobial remediation of Sigma-Lamaque Gold Mine waste lands in Val-d’Or, Québec. Canadian Reclamation, 14: 36-39.

Lévesque, B., Gervais, M.-C., Chevalier, P., Gauvin, D., Anassour-Laouan-Sidi, E., Gingras, S., Fortin, N., Brisson, G., Greer, C.W., Bird, D., 2014. Prospective study of acute health effects in relation to exposure to cyanobacteria. Science of the Total Environment, 466-467: 397-403. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.07.045.

Martineau, C., Pan, Y., Bodrossy, L., Yergeau, E., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2014. Atmospheric methane oxidizers are present and active in Canadian high Arctic soils. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 89(2): 257-269. DOI: 10.1111/1574-6941.12287.

Yergeau, E., Sanschagrin, S., Maynard, C., St-Arnaud, M., Greer, C.W., 2014. Microbial expression profiles in the rhizosphere of willows depend on soil contamination. ISME Journal, 8: 344-358. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2013.163.

Auffret, M., Yergeau, E., Pilote, A., Proulx, É., Proulx, D., Greer, C.W., Vandenberg, G., Villemur, R., 2013. Impact of water quality on the bacterial populations and off-flavours in recirculating aquaculture systems. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 84(2): 235–247. DOI: 10.1111/1574-6941.12053.

Bell, T., Callender, K.L., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2013. Microbial competition in polar soils: A review of an understudied but potentially important control on productivity. Biology, 2(2): 533-554. DOI: 10.3390/biology2020533.

Bell, T., Yergeau, E., Juck, D.F., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2013. Alteration of microbial community structure affects diesel biodegradation in an Arctic soil. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 85(1): 51-61. DOI: 10.1111/1574-6941.12102.

Bell, T., Yergeau, E., Maynard, C., Juck, D., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., 2013. Predictable bacterial composition and hydrocarbon degradation in Arctic soils following diesel and nutrient disturbance. ISME Journal, 7: 1200-1210. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2013.1.

Lay, C.-Y., Mykytczuk, N.C.S., Yergeau, E., Lamarche-Gagnon, G., Greer, C.W., Whyte, L., 2013. Defining the functional potential and active community members of a sediment microbial community in a high-arctic hypersaline subzero spring. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 79(12): 3637-3648. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.00153-1.

Mykytczuk, N.C.S., Foote, S.J., Omelon, C.R., Southam, G., Greer, C.W., Whyte, L., 2013. Bacterial growth at -15°C; molecular insights from the permafrost bacterium Planococcus halocryophilus Or1. ISME Journal, 7: 1211-1226. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2013.8.

Sheibani, S., Yanni, S.F., Wilhelm, R.C., Whalen, J.K., Whyte, L., Greer, C.W., Madramootoo, C.A., 2013. Soil bacteria and archaea found in long-term corn (Zea mays L.) agroecosystems in Quebec, Canada. Canadian Journal of Soil Science, 93(1): 45-57. DOI: 10.4141/cjss2012-040.

Teixeira, L.C.R.S., Yergeau, E., Balieiro, F.C., Piccolo, M.C., Peixoto, R.S., Greer, C.W., Rosado, A.S., 2013. Plant and bird presence strongly influences the microbial communities in soils of Admiralty Bay, Maritime Antarctica. PLoS one, 8(6): e66109.

Yergeau, E., Lawrence, J.R., Sanschagrin, S., Roy, J.L., Swerhone, G.D.W., Korber, D.R., Greer, C.W., 2013. Aerobic biofilms grown from Athabasca Watershed sediments are inhibited by increasing concentrations of bituminous compounds. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 79(23): 7398 –7412. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.02216-13.

Yeung, W.C., Stempvoort, D.R., Spoelstra, J., Bickerton, G., Voralek, J., Greer, C.W., 2013. Bacterial community evidence for anaerobic degradation of petroleum hydrocarbons in cold climate groundwater. Cold Regions Science and Technology, 86: 55-68. DOI: 10.1016/j.coldregions.2012.10.013.

Ferrera-Rodríguez, O., Greer, C.W., Juck, D., Consaul, L.L., Martínez-Romero, E., Whyte, L., 2012. Hydrocarbon-degrading potential of microbial communities from Arctic plants. Journal of Applied Microbiology, 114(1): 71-83.

Jugnia, L.-B., Mottiar, Y., Djuikom, E., Cabral, A.R., Greer, C.W., 2012. Effect of compost, nitrogen salts, and NPK fertilizers on methane oxidation potential at different temperatures. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 93(6): 2633-43. DOI: 10.1007/s00253-011-3560-4.

Lay, C.-Y., Mykytczuk, N.C.S., Niederberger, T.D., Martineau, C., Greer, C.W., Whyte, L., 2012. Microbial diversity and activity in hypersaline high Arctic spring channels. Extremophiles, 16(2): 177-191. DOI: 10.1007/s00792-011-0417-9.

Phillips, L.A., Greer, C.W., Farrell, R.E., Germida, J.J., 2012. Plant root exudates impact the hydrocarbon degradation potential of a weathered-hydrocarbon contaminated soil. Applied Soil Ecology, 52: 56-64. DOI: 10.1016/j.apsoil.2011.10.009.

Wilhelm, R.C., Radtke, K.J., Mykytczuk, N.C.S., Greer, C.W., Whyte, L., 2012. Life at the wedge: the activity and diversity of arctic ice wedge microbial communities. Astrobiology, 12(4): 347-360. DOI: 10.1089/ast.2011.0730.

Yergeau, E., Bokhorst, S., Kang, S., Zhou, J., Greer, C.W., Aerts, R., Kowalchuk, G.A., 2012. Shifts in soil microorganisms in response to warming are consistent across a range of Antarctic environments. ISME Journal, 6: 692–702. DOI: 10.1038/ismej.2011.124.

Yergeau, E., Lawrence, J.R., Sanschagrin, S., Waiser, M.J., Korber, D.R., Greer, C.W., 2012. Next-generation sequencing of microbial communities in the Athabasca River and its tributaries in relation to oil sands mining activities. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 78(21): 7626-7637. DOI: 10.1128/AEM.02036-12.

Yergeau, E., Sanschagrin, S., Beaumier, D., Greer, C.W., 2012. Metagenomic analysis of the bioremediation of diesel-contaminated Canadian High Arctic soils. PLoS one, 7(1): e30058. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0030058.

Yergeau, E., Sanschagrin, S., Waiser, M.J., Lawrence, J.R., Greer, C.W., 2012. Sub-inhibitory concentrations of different pharmaceutical products affect the meta-transcriptome of river biofilm communities cultivated in rotating annular reactors. Environmental Microbiology Reports, 4(3): 350-359. DOI: 10.1111/j.1758-2229.2012.00341.x.

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