Faculty/Staff Directory

Kaoru Ikuma

  • Assistant Professor
  • Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering

Main Office

328 Town Engr
Ames, IA 50011-3232
Phone: 515-294-7660


  • Ph.D. Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University, 2011
  • M.S. Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 2007
  • B.S. Biochemistry, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 2005
  • B.S. Biology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 2005

Interest Areas

  • Environmental microbiology and biotechnology
  • Microbial ecology
  • Biodegradation of hazardous contaminants
  • Sustainable water and wastewater treatment
  • Water-energy nexus
  • Green chemistry for environmental applications

Selected Publications

  1. Ikuma K., Decho A. W., Lau B. L. T. (2015). "When nanoparticles meet biofilms: Interactions guiding the environmental fate and accumulation of nanoparticles," Frontiers in Microbiology, 16 June 2015. http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2015.00591
  2. Chae S.-R., Hunt D. E., Ikuma K., Yang S., Cho J., Gunsch C. K., Liu J., Wiesner M. R. (2014). "Aging of fullerene C60 nanoparticle suspensions in the presence of microbes," Water Research 2014, Vol. 6, pp. 282-289. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.watres.2014.07.038
  3. Huang R., Carney R. P., Ikuma K., Stellacci F., Lau B. L. T. (2014). "Effects of surface compositional and structural heterogeneity on nanoparticle-protein interactions: Different protein configurations," ACS Nano 2014, Vol. 8, No. 6, pp. 5402-5412. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/nn501203k
  4. Ikuma K., Madden A. S., Decho A. W., Lau B. L. T. (2014). "Deposition of nanoparticles onto polysaccharide-coated surfaces: Implications for nanoparticle-biofilm interactions," Environmental Science: Nano 2014, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp. 117-122. http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C3EN00075C
  5. Ikuma K., Decho A. W., Lau B. L. T. (2013). "The extracellular bastions of bacteria – A biofilm way of life," Nature Education Knowledge, 2013, Vol. 4, No. 2, p. 2. http://www.nature.com/scitable/knowledge/library /the-extracellular-bastions-of-bacteria-nbsp-a-100450088
  6. Ikuma K. and Gunsch C. K. (2013). "Functionality of the TOL plasmid under varying environmental conditions following conjugal transfer," Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 2013, Vol. 97, No. 1, pp. 395-408. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00253-012-3949-8
  7. Ikuma K., Holzem R. M., Gunsch C. K. (2012). "Impacts of organic carbon availability and recipient bacteria characteristics on the potential for TOL plasmid genetic bioaugmentation in soil slurries," Chemosphere, 2012, Vol. 89, No. 2, pp. 158-163. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2012.05.086
  8. Ikuma K. and Gunsch C. K. (2010). "Effect of carbon source addition on toluene biodegradation by an Escherichia coli DH5 atransconjugant harboring the TOL plasmid," Biotechnology and Bioengineering 2010, Vol. 107, No. 2, pp. 269-277. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/bit.22808