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Marine Sciences Division

Li-Jung Kuo

Marine Sciences Laboratory
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
1529 West Sequim Bay Road
Sequim, Washington 98382


Dr. Li-Jung Kuo is a research scientist at the Marine Sciences Laboratory of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Li-Jung’s research interests are generally in three broad areas: 1) characterization of impacts of natural and human-induced environmental perturbation on ecosystems; 2) distribution and transport of organic pollutants in the marine environment; and 3) exploration of marine resources for fuel sources. Major research efforts are on the fate of organic carbon in the environment; organic contaminants (PAHs, PCBs, PBDEs) mass balance in watersheds; human exposure to natural and man-made brominated organic pollutants (e.g. brominated flame retardants); and extraction of valuable elements from seawater.

Research Interests

  • Anthropogenic and environmental perturbations on carbon dynamics
  • Fate and transport of pyrogenic carbon in the environment
  • Biochar for carbon sequestration and contaminant immobilization
  • Environmental distribution and mitigation of persistent organic pollutants
  • Oil spill mitigation
  • Human exposure to halogenated flame retardants
  • Harvest of valuable elements from seawater

Education and Credentials

  • Ph.D., 2009 Geochemistry, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX.
  • M.S., 1999 Marine Chemistry, National Sun Yat-sen University, Taiwan.
  • B.S., 1996 Marine Environment and Engineering, National Sun Yat-sen University, Taiwan.

Affiliations and Professional Service

  • American Geophysical Union (AGU)

Awards and Recognitions

  • 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016 PNNL Outstanding Performance Award
  • 2008 TAMU College of Geoscience Halbouty Fellowship
  • 2005, 2006, 2008 TAMU College of Geoscience Berg/Parker Scholarship
  • 2004, 2007 TAMU College of Geoscience Conoco-Phillips Fellowship
  • 2005 TAMU College of Geoscience ChevronTexaco Fellowship

PNNL Publications


  • Kuo LJ, GA Gill, C Tsouris, L Rao, HB Pan, CM Wai, CJ Janke, JE Strivens, JR Wood, NJ Schlafer, and E D'Alessandro. 2018. "Temperature Dependence of Uranium and Vanadium Adsorption on Amidoxime-Based Adsorbents in Natural Seawater." ChemistrySelect 3(2):843-848.  doi:10.1002/slct.201701895


  • Kuo LJ, HB Pan, CM Wai, M Flicker Byers, E Schneider, JE Strivens, CJ Janke, S Das, RT Mayes, JR Wood, NJ Schlafer, and GA Gill. 2017. "Investigations into the reusability of amidoxime-based polymeric adsorbents for seawater uranium extraction." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 56(40):11603-11611.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.7b02893
  • Ladshaw A, LJ Kuo, JE Strivens, JR Wood, NJ Schlafer, S Yiacoumi, C Tsouris, and GA Gill. 2017. "Influence of Current Velocity on Uranium Adsorption from Seawater Using an Amidoxime-based Polymer Fiber Adsorbent." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 56(8):2205-2211.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.6b04539
  • Li CY, S Lee, SE Cade, LJ Kuo, IR Schultz, DK Bhatt, B Prasad, T Bammler, and Y Cui. 2017. "Novel Interactions between Gut Microbiome and Host Drug-processing Genes Modify the Hepatic Metabolism of the Environmental Chemicals PBDEs." Drug Metabolism and Disposition 45(11):1197-1214.  doi:10.1124/dmd.117.077024
  • Neti VS, S Das, S Brown, CJ Janke, LJ Kuo, GA Gill, S Dai, and RT Mayes. 2017. "Efficient Functionalization of Polyethylene Fibers for the Uranium Extraction from Seawater through Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 56(38):10826-10832.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.7b00482
  • Pan HB, CM Wai, LJ Kuo, GA Gill, G Tian, L Rao, S Das, RT Mayes, and CJ Janke. 2017. "Bicarbonate Elution of Uranium from Amidoxime-based Polymer Adsorbents for Sequestering Uranium from Seawater." ChemistrySelect 2(13):3769-3774.  doi:10.1002/slct.201700177


  • Wood JR, GA Gill, LJ Kuo, JE Strivens, and KY Choe. 2016. "Comparison of Analytical Methods for the Determination of Uranium in Seawater Using Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4344-4350.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03680
  • Abney CW, S Das, RT Mayes, LJ Kuo, JR Wood, GA Gill, M Piechowicz, Z Lin, W Lin, and S Dai. 2016. "A report on emergent uranyl binding phenomena by an amidoxime phosphonic acid co-polymer." Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics. PCCP 18(34):23462-23468.  doi:10.1039/c6cp04772f
  • Brown S, Y Yue, LJ Kuo, N Mehio, M Li, GA Gill, C Tsouris, RT Mayes, T Saito, and S Dai. 2016. "Uranium Adsorbent Fibers Prepared by Atom-Transfer Radical Polymerization (ATRP) from Poly(vinyl chloride)-co-chlorinated Poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC-co-CPVC) Fiber." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4139-4148.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03355
  • Das S, C Tsouris, C Zhang, J Kim, S Brown, Y Oyola, C Janke, RT Mayes, LJ Kuo, JR Wood, GA Gill, and S Dai. 2016. "Enhancing Uranium Uptake by Amidoxime Adsorbent in Seawater: An investigation for optimum alkaline conditioning parameters." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4294-4302.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b02735
  • Das S, SS Brown, RT Mayes, CJ Janke, C Tsouris, LJ Kuo, GA Gill, and S Dai. 2016. "Novel Poly(imide dioxime) Sorbents: Development and testing for enhanced extraction of uranium from natural seawater." Chemical Engineering Journal 298:125-135.  doi:10.1016/j.cej.2016.04.013
  • Das S, WP Liao, M Flicker Byers, C Tsouris, CJ Janke, RT Mayes, E Schneider, LJ Kuo, JR Wood, GA Gill, and S Dai. 2016. "Alternative Alkaline Conditioning of Amidoxime Based Adsorbent for Uranium Extraction from Seawater." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4303-4312.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03210
  • Das S, Y Oyola, RT Mayes, CJ Janke, LJ Kuo, GA Gill, JR Wood, and S Dai. 2016. "Extracting Uranium from Seawater: Promising AF Series Adsorbents." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4110-4117.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03136
  • Das S, Y Oyola, RT Mayes, CJ Janke, LJ Kuo, GA Gill, JR Wood, and S Dai. 2016. "Extracting Uranium from Seawater: Promising AI Series Adsorbents." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4103-4109.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03135
  • Gill GA, LJ Kuo, CJ Janke, J Park, RT Jeters, GT Bonheyo, HB Pan, C Wai, T Khangaonkar, L Bianucci, JR Wood, MG Warner, SM Peterson, DG Abrecht, R Mayes, C Tsouris, Y Oyola, JE Strivens, NJ Schlafer, RS Addleman, W Chouyyok, S Das, J Kim, KO Buesseler, C Breier, and E D'Alessandro. 2016. "The Uranium from Seawater Program at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: Overview of Marine Testing, Adsorbent Characterization, Adsorbent Durability, Adsorbent Toxicity, and Deployment Studies." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4264-4277.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03649
  • Gill GA, LJ Kuo, JE Strivens, JR Wood, NJ Schlafer, and E D'Alessandro. 2016. Uranium from Seawater Marine Testing Program at the University of Miami's Broad Key Island Research StationPNNL-25734, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Gill GA, LJ Kuo, JE Strivens, JR Wood, NJ Schlafer, C Tsouris, CJ Janke, S Das, R Mayes, T Saito, SS Brown, C Tsouris, CM Wai, and HB Pan. 2016. Summary of Adsorption Capacity and Adsorption Kinetics of Uranium and Other Elements on Amidoxime-based Adsorbents from Time Series Marine Testing at the Pacific Northwest National LaboratoryPNNL-25899, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Harvey OR, AN Myers-Pigg, LJ Kuo, B Singh, KA Kuehn, and P Louchouarn. 2016. "Discrimination in degradability of Soil Pyrogenic Organic Matter follows a Return-On-Energy-Investment Principle." Environmental Science & Technology 50(16):8578-8585.  doi:10.1021/acs.est.6b01010
  • Kuo LJ, CJ Janke, JR Wood, JE Strivens, S Das, Y Oyola, RT Mayes, and GA Gill. 2016. "Characterization and Testing of Amidoxime-Based Adsorbent Materials to Extract Uranium from Natural Seawater." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4285-4293.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03267
  • Kuo LJ, GA Gill, JE Strivens, JR Wood, NJ Schlafer, CM Wai, and HB Pan. 2016. Investigations Into the Reusability of Amidoxime-Based Polymeric Uranium AdsorbentsPNNL-25874, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Pan HB, LJ Kuo, CM Wai, N Miyamoto, R Joshi, JR Wood, JE Strivens, CJ Janke, Y Oyola, S Das, R Mayes, and GA Gill. 2016. "Elution of Uranium and Transition Metals from Amidoxime- Based Polymer Adsorbents for Sequestering Uranium from Seawater." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4313-4320.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03307
  • Park J, RT Jeters, LJ Kuo, JE Strivens, GA Gill, NJ Schlafer, and GT Bonheyo. 2016. "Potential impact of seawater uranium extraction on marine life." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4278-4284.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03430
  • Park J, GA Gill, JE Strivens, LJ Kuo, RT Jeters, A Avila, JR Wood, NJ Schlafer, CJ Janke, EA Miller, M Thomas, RS Addleman, and GT Bonheyo. 2016. "Effect of biofouling on the performance of amidoxime-based polymeric uranium adsorbents." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 55(15):4328-4338.  doi:10.1021/acs.iecr.5b03457



  • Kuo LJ, CL Lee, P Louchouarn, CA Huh, JT Liu, JC Chen, and KJ Lee. 2014. "A centennial record of anthropogenic impacts and extreme weather events in southwestern Taiwan: Evidence from sedimentary molecular markers in coastal margin." Marine Pollution Bulletin 86(1-2):244-253.  doi:10.1016/j.marpolbul.2014.07.010
  • Gill GA, LJ Kuo, JR Wood, and C Janke. 2014. Complete Laboratory Evaluation and Issue a Report on the Impact of Temperature on Uranium AdsorptionPNNL-23634, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Kim J, C Tsouris, Y Oyola, C Janke, RT Mayes, S Dai, GA Gill, LJ Kuo, JR Wood, KY Choe, E Schneider, and H Lindner. 2014. "Uptake of Uranium from Seawater by Amidoxime-Based Polymeric Adsorbent: Field Experiments, Modeling, and Updated Economic Assessment." Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 53(14):6076-6083.  doi:10.1021/ie4039828
  • Saito T, S Brown, S Chatterjee, J Kim, C Tsouris, R Mayes, LJ Kuo, GA Gill, Y Oyola, C Janke, and S Dai. 2014. "Uranium Recovery from Seawater: Development of Fiber Adsorbents Prepared via Atom-Transfer Radical Polymerization." Journal of Materials Chemistry A 2(35):14674-14681.  doi:10.1039/C4TA03276D


  • Norwood MJ, P Louchouarn, LJ Kuo, and O Harvey. 2013. "Characterization and biodegradation of water-soluble biomarkers and organic carbon extracted from low temperature chars." Organic Geochemistry 56:111-119.  doi:10.1016/j.orggeochem.2012.12.008


  • Harvey OR, LJ Kuo, AR Zimmerman, P Louchouarn, JE Amonette, and B Herbert. 2012. "An Index-Based Approach to Assessing Recalcitrance and Soil Carbon Sequestration Potential of Engineered Black Carbons (Biochars)." Environmental Science & Technology 46(3):1415-1421.  doi:10.1021/es2040398
  • Brandenberger JM, LJ Kuo, CR Suslick, and RK Johnston. 2012. Ambient Monitoring for Sinclair and Dyes Inlets, Puget Sound, Washington: Chemical Analyses for 2012 Regional Mussel WatchPNNL-21862, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Harvey OR, B Herbert, LJ Kuo, and P Louchouarn. 2012. "Generalized Two-Dimensional Perturbation Correlation Infrared Spectroscopy reveals Mechanisms for the Development of Surface Charge and Recalcitrance in Plant-derived Biochars." Environmental Science & Technology 46(19):10641-10650.  doi:10.1021/es302971d
  • Huesemann MH, LJ Kuo, LA Urquhart, GA Gill, and G Roesijadi. 2012. "Acetone-butanol Fermentation of Marine Macroalgae." Bioresource Technology 108:305-309.  doi:10.1016/j.biortech.2011.12.148
  • Louchouarn P, LJ Kuo, JM Brandenberger, F Marcantonio, CR Garland, GA Gill, and VI Cullinan. 2012. "Pyrogenic inputs of anthropogenic Pb and Hg to sediments of the Hood Canal, Washington, in the 20th century: Source evidence from stable Pb isotopes and PAH signatures." Environmental Science & Technology 46(11):5772-5781.  doi:10.1021/es300269t


  • Kuo LJ, P Louchouarn, and B Herbert. 2011. "Influence of Combustion Conditions on Yields of Solvent-Extractable Anhydrosugars and Lignin Phenols in Chars: Implications for Characterizations of Biomass Combustion Residues." Chemosphere 85(5):797-805.  doi:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2011.06.074
  • Kuo LJ, P Louchouarn, B Herbert, JM Brandenberger, TL Wade, and EA Crecelius. 2011. "Combustion-derived substances in deep basins of Puget Sound: Historical inputs from fossil fuel and biomass combustion." Environmental Pollution 159(4):983-990.  doi:10.1016/j.envpol.2010.12.012
  • Harvey OR, B Herbert, RD Rhue, and LJ Kuo. 2011. "Metal Interactions at the Biochar-Water Interface: Energetics and Structure-Sorption Relationships Elucidated by Flow Adsorption Microcalorimetry." Environmental Science & Technology 45(13):5550-5556.  doi:10.1021/es104401h


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Marine Sciences Laboratory
1529 W. Sequim Bay Road
Sequim, WA 98382
Phone: (360) 683-4151
Fax: (360) 681-3699