My group and I are interested in biomineralization, that is, in understanding the formation mechanisms, structure, chemistry, and materials properties of natural biominerals. These include coral skeletons, sea urchin spines, mollusk shell nacre, tooth enamel, and cochleae. Understanding biomineral-environment interactions in the past, present, and future. Understanding how biomineralization evolved. Saving coral reefs from climate change.

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Published by Elsevier-Academic Press, London, March 2021. Third edition, ISBN: 9780128243473

Current publication name: P.U.P.A. Gilbert   CV
Former publication name: Gelsomina De Stasio

at UW-Madison:

Professor of Physics (100%)
Professor of Chemistry (0%)
Professor of Materials Science (0%)
Professor of Geoscience (0%)
Email: pupa-at-physics-dot-wisc-dot-edu
Phone: (608) 262-5829
Fax: (608) 262-3077

at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory:

Visiting Faculty Scientist, August 2019-present


Where I come from


Ten most relevant publications:

  1. E Beniash, CA Stifler, C-Y Sun, GS Jung, Z Qin, MJ Buehler, PUPA Gilbert.
    The hidden structure of human enamel. DOI:
    Nature Communications 10, 4383/1-13 (2019). PDF
  2. PUPA Gilbert, SM Porter, BM Gibson, C-Y Sun, S Xiao, N Shenkar, AH Knoll
    Crystallization by particle attachment in early biomineralizing animals
    Procs Natl Acad Sci 116, 17659-17665. PDF
  3. T Mass, AJ Giuffre, C-Y Sun, CA Stifler, MJ Frazier, M Neder, N Tamura, CV Stan, MA Marcus, PUPA Gilbert.
    Amorphous Calcium Carbonate Particles Form Coral Skeletons.
    Procs. Natl. Acad. Sci. 114, E7670-E7678 (2017). COVER PDF
    Highlighted in Science 357, 1012 (2017). PDF
  4. RT DeVol, C-Y Sun, MA Marcus, SN Coppersmith, SCB Myneni, and PUPA Gilbert.
    Nanoscale transforming mineral phases in fresh nacre.
    J Am Chem Soc, 137, 13325-13333 (2015).
    Highlighted in Science 350, 648 (2015)
  5. JJ De Yoreo, PUPA Gilbert, NAJM Sommerdijk, RL Penn, S Whitelam, D Joester, H Zhang, JD Rimer, A Navrotsky, JF Banfield, AF Wallace, FM Michel, FC Meldrum, H Cölfen, PM Dove.
    Crystallization by Particle Attachment in Synthetic, Biogenic, and Geologic Environments.
    Science 149, aaa6760 (2015).
  6. YUT Gong, CE Killian, IC Olson, NP Appathurai, AL Amasino, MC Martin, LJ Holt, FH Wilt, PUPA Gilbert.
    Phase Transitions in Biogenic Amorphous Calcium Carbonate.
    Procs. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 109, 6088-6093 (2012).
  7. E Beniash, RA Metzler, RSK Lam, and PUPA Gilbert.
    Transient amorphous calcium phosphate in forming enamel.
    J. Struct. Biol. 166, 133-143 (2009).
  8. PUPA Gilbert, RA Metzler, D Zhou, A Scholl, A Doran, A Young, M Kunz, N Tamura, SN Coppersmith.
    Gradual Ordering in Red Abalone Nacre.
    J. Am. Chem. Soc. 130, 17519-17527 (2008).
  9. Y Politi, RA Metzler, M Abrecht, B Gilbert, F Wilt, I Sagi, L Addadi, S Weiner, and PUPA Gilbert.
    Mechanism of transformation of amorphous calcium carbonate into calcite in the sea urchin larval spicule.
    Procs. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 105, 17362-17366 (2008).
  10. RA Metzler, M Abrecht, RM Olabisi, D Ariosa, CJ Johnson, BH Frazer, SN Coppersmith, PUPA Gilbert.
    Columnar Nacre Architecture and Possible Formation Mechanism.
    Phys. Rev. Lett. 98, 268102-1/4 (2007).
    Also featured in Science 317, 175 (2007).