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HomePeople Josef Werne
Josef Werne

Associate Professor

Large Lakes Observatory
University of Minnesota Duluth
2205 E. 5th St.,
Research Laboratory Building 205
Duluth, MN 55812

Tel. (218) 726-7435

Fax: (218) 726-6979

email: jwerne at


  • Organic and Stable Isotope Biogeochemistry.
  • Sedimentary cycling of organic and inorganic sulfur and the sulfurization of organic matter.
  • Biogeochemical isotope fractionation processes of C, H, O, N, and S.
  • Molecular isotopic indicators of paleoclimate in sedimentary archives.
  • Microbial geochemistry.


Northwestern University, Ph.D.
Denison University, B.S.


  • CHEM 2212 Environmental Chemistry
  • LIM 5004 Field Limnology
  • LIM 5102 Chemical Limnology
  • CHEM 5150 Organic and Stable Isotope Biogeochemistry


* denotes student/postdoc author

Woltering*, M., J.P. Werne, J.L. Kish*, R. Hicks, J.S. Sinninghe Damsté, S. Schouten (in press 2012) Vertical and temporal variability of Crenarchaeota in Lake Superior and the implications for the application of the TEX86 temperature proxy. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta

Zigah*, P.K., E.C. Minor, J.P. Werne (in press 2012) The spatio-temporal distribution of radiocarbon in organic and inorganic carbon in the Lake Superior water column. Global Biogeochemical Cycles

Konecky, B., J.M. Russell, T.C. Johnson, E.T. Brown, M.A. Berke*, J.P. Werne, Y. Huang (2011) Atmospheric circulation patterns during late Pleistocene climate changes at Lake Malawi, Africa. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. v. 312, pp 318-326.

Weijers, J., B. Bernhardt*, F. Peterse, J.P. Werne, J.A.J. Dungait, S. Schouten, J.S. Sinninghe Damsté (2011) Absence of seasonal patterns in MBT-CBT indices in mid-latitude soils. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. v. 75, pp. 3179-3190.

Zigah*, P.K., E.C. Minor, J.P. Werne, S.L. McCallister (2011) Radiocarbon and stable-carbon isotopic insights into provenance and cycling of carbon in Lake Superior. Limnology & Oceanography. v. 56, pp. 867-886.

Fawcett, P., J.P. Werne, R. Anderson, J. Heikoop, E. Brown, M. Berke*, S. Smith, F. Goff, L. Hurley, M. Cisneros-Dozal, S. Schouten, J. Sinninghe Damsté, Y. Huang, J. Toney, J. Fessenden, G. WoldeGabriel, V. Atudorei, J. Geissman, C. Allen (2011) Extended Megadroughts in the Southwestern United States during Pleistocene Interglacials. Nature. v. 470, pp. 518-521.

Powers*, L., J.P. Werne, I. Castañeda*, T.C. Johnson, E.C. Hopmans, J.S. Sinninghe Damsté, S. Schouten (2011) Organic Geochemical Records of Environmental Variability in Lake Malawi During the Last 700 Years, Part I: The TEX86 Temperature Record. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. v. 303, pp. 133-139.

Castañeda*, I., Werne, J.P., Johnson, T., Oberem*, L. (2011) Organic Geochemical Records from Lake Malawi (East Africa) of the last 700 years, part II: Biomarker Evidence for Recent Changes in Primary Productivity. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. v. 303, pp. 140-154.

Woltering*, M., Werne, J.P., Johnson, T., S. Schouten, J.S. Sinninghe Damsté (2011) Late Pleistocene temperature history of southeast Africa: A TEX86 temperature record from Lake Malawi Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. v. 303 p. 93-102.

Li, X.N., W. Gilhooly, A. Zerkle, T. Lyons, J. Farquhar, J.P. Werne, R. Varela, M. Scranton (2010) Stable sulfur isotopes in the water column of the Cariaco Basin. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, v. 74, pp. 6764-6778.

Blaga, Cornelia I., G.-J. Reichart, S. Schouten, A.F. Lotter, J.P. Werne, J.S. Sinninghe Damsté (2010) Branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers in lake sediments: Can they be used as temperature and pH proxies? Organic Geochemistry, v. 41, pp. 1225-1234.

Powers*, L., J.P. Werne, A.J. Vanderwoude*, J.S. Sinninghe Damsté, E.C. Hopmans, S. Schouten (2010) Applicability and calibration of the TEX86 paleothermometer in lakes. Organic Geochemistry, v. 41, pp. 404-413.

Leavitt, P., S. Fritz, N. Anderson, P. Baker, T. Blenckner, L. Bunting, J. Catalan, D. Conley, W. Hobbs, E. Jeppesen, A. Korhola, S. McGowan, K. Ruhland, J. Rusak, G. Simpson, N. Solovieva, J.P. Werne (2009) Paleolimnological evidence of the effects on lakes of energy and mass transfer from climate and humans. Limnology & Oceanography, v. 54, no. 6/2, pp. 2330-2348.

Castañeda*, I., Werne, J.P., Johnson, T. (2009) Influence of climate change on algal community structure and primary productivity of Lake Malawi (East Africa) from the Last Glacial Maximum to present. Limnology & Oceanography, v. 54, no. 6/2, pp. 2431-2447.

Weijers, J.W.H., C. Blaga, J.P. Werne, and J.S. Sinninghe Damsté (2009) Microbial membrane lipids in lake sediments as a paleothermometer. PAGES News, v. 17, no. 3, pp. 102-104.

Russell*, J., Werne, J.P., (2009) Climate change and productivity variations recorded by sedimentary sulfur in Lake Edward, Uganda/D.R. Congo. Chemical Geology. v. 264, pp. 337-346.

Castañeda*, I., Werne, J.P., Johnson, T., and Filley, T. (2009) Late Quaternary vegetation history of southeast Africa: the molecular isotopic record from Lake Malawi. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. v. 275, pp. 100-112.

Donahue*, M., J.P. Werne, C. Meile, T.W. Lyons (2008) Response to Comment by I.C. Bourg on “Modeling sulfur isotope fractionation and differential diffusion during sulfate reduction in sediments of the Cariaco Basin” by M.A. Donahue, J.P. Werne, C. Meile, and T.W. Lyons. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. v. 72, pp. 5855-5856.

Werne, J.P., T.W. Lyons, D.J. Hollander, S. Schouten, E.C. Hopmans, and J.S. Sinninghe Damsté (2008) Investigating pathways of diagenetic organic matter sulfurization using compound-specific sulfur isotope analysis. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, v. 72, pp. 3489-3502.

Donahue*, M., J.P. Werne, C. Meile, T.W. Lyons (2008) Modeling the effects of fractionation and differential diffusion on the sulfur isotope signature of sulfate reduction in Cariaco Basin sediments. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. v. 72, pp. 2287-2297.

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