Roger Everett Summons

Roger Everett Summons
Alma mater University of Wollongong
Occupation university teacher, geobiologist
Employer Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Scientific career

Thesis The alkaloids of some Australian and New Guinea plants (1971)

Roger Everett Summons is Professor of Geobiology in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.[1]

Education and early life

Roger Summons was born in Sydney, Australia, and received Bachelor of Science (1968) and PhD (1972) degrees in Chemistry from the University of Wollongong.[2][3][4]

Research and career

Before joining MIT in 2001, he held appointments at Stanford, Australian Iron and Steel, the Australian National University and at Geoscience Australia.[5] Summons is particularly known for the application of organic geochemical techniques to sediments of Precambrian age and modern microbes in order to increase our understanding of the early evolution of life on Earth.[6] Currently he is also engaged as a participating scientist with the search for organics in NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory mission.

Selected papers

Honors and awards


  1. MIT-EAPS Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  2. "Roger Summons - Alumni @ UOW". University of Wollongong.
  3. Formerly known as the Wollongong University College of UNSW, then part of the University of New South Wales before the University of Wollongong gained its autonomy in 1975.
  5. 1 2 Biographical entry: Encyclopedia of Australian Science Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  6. 1 2 AAM Fellowship biography Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  7. Love, Gordon D.; Grosjean, Emmanuelle; Stalvies, Charlotte; Fike, David A.; Grotzinger, John P.; Bradley, Alexander S.; Kelly, Amy E.; Bhatia, Maya; Meredith, William; Snape, Colin E.; Bowring, Samuel A.; Condon, Daniel J.; Summons, Roger E. (2009). "Fossil steroids record the appearance of Demospongiae during the Cryogenian period". Nature. 457 (7230): 718–721. doi:10.1038/nature07673. ISSN 0028-0836.
  8. Summons, R. E; Bradley, A. S; Jahnke, L. L; Waldbauer, J. R (2006). "Steroids, triterpenoids and molecular oxygen". Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 361 (1470): 951–968. doi:10.1098/rstb.2006.1837. ISSN 0962-8436.
  9. Summons, Roger E.; Jahnke, Linda L.; Hope, Janet M.; Logan, Graham A. (1999). "2-Methylhopanoids as biomarkers for cyanobacterial oxygenic photosynthesis". Nature. 400 (6744): 554–557. doi:10.1038/23005. ISSN 0028-0836.
  10. Brocks, J. J. (1999). "Archean Molecular Fossils and the Early Rise of Eukaryotes". Science. 285 (5430): 1033–1036. doi:10.1126/science.285.5430.1033. ISSN 0036-8075.
  11. Summons, Roger E.; Powell, Trevor G. (1986). "Chlorobiaceae in Palaeozoic seas revealed by biological markers, isotopes and geology". Nature. 319 (6056): 763–765. doi:10.1038/319763a0. ISSN 0028-0836.
  12. List of fellows, Australian Academy of Science Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  13. Alfred Treibs award Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  14. Bert Halpern lecturers Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  15. AGU Fellows Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  16. MARUM Press Release Retrieved: June 5th 2013
  17. "Professor Roger Summons FRS". London: Royal Society. Archived from the original on 2015-11-17. One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from the website where:
    “All text published under the heading 'Biography' on Fellow profile pages is available under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.” --Royal Society Terms, conditions and policies at the Wayback Machine (archived September 25, 2015)
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