2005 ScD, Medical Physics, Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences & Technology, MIT
2001 SM, Aeronautics and Astronautics, MIT
1999 SB, Aeronautics and Astronautics (Minor in Economics), MIT
1999 SB, Electrical Science and Engineering, MIT

Academic Appointments

2008-Present: Research Scientist, MIT Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences (EAPS); Research Fellow, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Molecular Biology
2005-2008: Postdoctoral Associate, MIT EAPS and MGH Molecular Biology
1999-2005: Research Assistant, MIT Center for Space Research, Man-Vehicle Laboratory

Awards & Honors

  • US Japan Leadership Program ( Delegate (2016-2017) & Fellow (2017-Present)
  • Awarded $4.2M by NASA as proposal author and/or Science PI (2008-Present)
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (1999-2002)
  • MIT Presidential Graduate Fellowship (1999)
  • MIT Aero/Astro Award for Excellence in Flight Vehicle Engineering (1999)
  • Eagle Scout (1991)

Training & Certification

  • Zero-G Corporation Parabolic Flight Experiment (2009, 2017)
  • Harvard Catalyst Medical Device Development Course (2015)
  • MIT (Kauffman) Teaching Certificate Program (2014)
  • Visiting Scientist (informal), Brookhaven National Lab, Radworker I Cert. (2009-2013)
  • NASA Planetary Protection Course (2006)
  • NASA Aerospace Medicine Clerkship (audited) (2003)
  • Central Clinical Hospital, Moscow, Russia, Rotation in Cardiac Surgery (2003)
  • Russian Academy of Sciences, Space Biology & Medicine Course (2003)
  • Clinical Rotation in Internal Medicine, Mt. Auburn Hospital, Cambridge MA (2003)
  • NASA Planetary Science Summer School (2002)
  • P2-rated Paraglider Pilot (2002)
  • NAUI SCUBA Certified (2000)
  • MIT Field Camp: Geologic Mapping of the Bird Spring Mountains (1999-2000)
  • NASA Rapid Decompression Training & Parabolic Flight Experiment (1999)
  • Private Pilot (Single Engine Land) (1995)
  • High altitude mountaineering (1995-Present)


Full ListGoogle Scholar | ResearchGate

6 selected publications (from 37 Peer Reviewed & 68 talks/abstracts/posters/other) 

Mojarro A, Hachey J, Ruvkun G, Zuber MT, Carr CE. CarrierSeq: a sequence analysis workflow for low-input nanopore sequencing. bioRxiv

Pontefract A, Zhu TF, Walker VK, Rowedder H, Lui C, Zuber MT, Ruvkun G, Carr CE. Microbial Diversity in a Hypersaline Sulfate Lake: An Analog of Ancient Mars. Frontiers in Microbiology, 26 Sept 2017 doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2017.01819 PMID 29018418 OpenAccess

Mojarro A, Ruvkun G, Zuber MT, Carr CE. Nucleic acid extraction from synthetic Mars analog soils for in situ life detection. Astrobiology2017 Jul 13. doi: 10.1089/ast.2016.1535 PMID 28704064 OpenAccess

Carr CE, Mojarro A, Hachey J, Saboda K, Tani J, Bhattaru SA, Smith A, Pontefract A, Zuber MT, Finney M, Doebler R, Brown M, Talbot R, Nguyen V, Bailey R, Ferguson T, Church G, Ruvkun G. Towards In Situ Sequencing for Life Detection. Aerospace Conference, 2017 IEEE. March 4-11, Big Sky, MT, USA, pp. 1-18. Session 2.07 In Situ Instruments for Landed Surface Exploration, Orbiters and Flybys. Paper # 2353 doi:10.1109/AERO.2017.7943896Author Manuscript.

Carr CE, Newman DJ. Exoskeleton Energetics: Implications for Planetary Extravehicular Activity. Aerospace Conference, 2017 IEEE. March 4-11, Big Sky, Montana. Session 8.06 Space Human Physiology and Countermeasures. Paper # 2354. doi: 10.1109/AERO.2017.7943712Author Manuscript.

L Wu, M Li, N Oshiro-Rapley, B Zhou, CM Webster, F Mou, MC Kacergis, ME Talkowski, CE Carr, B Zheng, AA Soukas. An Ancient, Unified Mechanism for Metformin Growth Inhibition in C. elegans and Cancer. Cell 167(7):1705-18, 15 Dec 2016; doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2016.11.055PMC5390486 (2017/12/15).

Invited Talks & Panels


  • Christian Science Monitor: Search for Life Film & Panel (panelist, November 2017)

  • ELSI/EON International Workshop on Life Detection (invited speaker, October, 2017)

  • Earth Life Science Institute (ELSI; invited speaker)
  • US Japan Leadership Program (USJLP; panel chair; invited speaker)
  • Osaka University (invited speaker; July 2017)
  • NASA Open EVA Human Research Forum (invited speaker)
  • Future In-Space Operations (FISO) (invited speaker)
  • Astrobiology Science Conference: Tiny Technologies (Panel Co-Chair)


  • Harvard Origins Initiative, Chalk Talk Seminar (invited speaker)
  • Center of Systems Medicine, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences (invited speaker)
  • Cold Spring Harbor Asia: Microbiology and the Environment (invited speaker)
  • SPINDLE workshop on Cryobot Sub-surface Exploration of Icy Moons (invited speaker)
  • Pennsylvania Dept. of Health: The future of sequencing (invited speaker)
  • Microbes at the Interface of Land-Atmosphere Feedbacks (MILAF) (invited speaker)


  • SEDS SpaceVision, (invited talk, Origin of Life panel member)
  • DARPA Biology is Technology (BiT) New York (invited participant)
  • DARPA Biocomplexity Workshop (lightning talk)


  • MIT Museum Lecture Series: How to make life and influence planets
  • NSF Workshop: Microbes at the Interface of Land-Atmosphere Feedbacks (MILAF)
  • LSU Dept. of Biology: The Search for Extra-Terrestrial Genomes (invited lecture)
  • American University: Is it time to search for life on Mars? (panel)
  • 13th International Workshop on Radiation Damage to DNA (Invited speaker)
  • Pennsylvania Dept. of Health: What does life on Mars have to do with public health?

Before 2014

  • Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Biomedical Engineering Seminar (2012)
  • MIT Lincoln Lab, Office of the Director Seminar Series (2011)
  • MIT150 Symposium on Earth, Air, Ocean and Space: The Future of Exploration; Panel Chair, Organizer (2011)

  • NASA Workshop on Synthetic Biology, Ames Research Center (2010)

Teaching & Mentoring


Introduction to Astrobiology Short Course: MIT Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Convener & Lecturer in collaboration with Alexandra Pontefract and Roger Summons (2017)

Statistical Methods in Experiment Design: Taught MIT Graduate course 16.470, guiding 15 students in developing and executing statistically based experiments culminating in oral and written reports (Spring, 2016).

Space Biology and Biomedical Engineering: Guest lecturer and course material development for multiple MIT courses. Delivered lectures on space radiation and biology, space biomedical engineering. Wrote problem sets for 2 chapters of textbook on aerospace design, Introduction to Aerospace Engineering. Contributor to formation of, and informal advisor to, Bioastronautics Program within the Harvard-MIT Program in Health Sciences & Technology (HST).

Curriculum Review: Member, Committee on Medical Education, Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology (HST); reviewed and authorized new curriculum (2003-2005).


Lab Research:  Mentored/managed 49 students or staff members (2004-Present) including 5 high school students, 30 undergraduate students, 4 grad students, 5 postdocs, 5 other staff. Of those, 29 were women and/or underrepresented minorities (59%).

NASA International Space Apps Challenge: Two-day global hackathon. Mentored multiple teams and supported local Boston/Cambridge competition managed by Binnovative, Inc., with a special focus on enabling U.S.-Japan collaborative teams (2015-2017). In 2015, 64 participants spent 27 hackathon hours each creating 14 projects in hardware, software, data, and design. NASA selected one of the several joint US-Japan collaborative teams (ASTROM3D) as a top-5 global finalist for best use of hardware.

Air Spora Trapping & Recovery Operation (ASTRO): Mentored student team (2013-2014), undergraduates who developed and flew a payload on the High Altitude Student Payload (HASP), a NASA stratospheric balloon mission run by LSU.

Outreach via lectures, lab activities, special events, and social media: As an example, over the past year my lab engaged hundreds of students and members of the public through 5 school visits, including two by the Boston Public Schools with hands-on lab activities (ATP detection, DNA extraction, chiral chemistry via smell) centered around a “From Molecular Biology to Mars” theme, a booth at the Cambridge Science Festival (2016, 2017), and an MIT Museum series on “How to Make Life and Influence Planets,” among other outreach events.

Professional Service

Proposal Reviewer for Federal Granting Agencies (9 panels to date, 2009-Present).

Advisory Board Member, Binnovative Inc. ( A non-profit organization that empowers joint US-Japan innovation through collaboration (2015-Present).

Clay International Secondary School, Ngomano, Kenya: Volunteered to help start high school in rural Kenya. Now 8 teachers and >100 students, who score in top 5% nationally (2005-2008).

Global Service Learning: Worked with MIT Edgerton Center and MIT Public Service Center to provide opportunities for MIT students to pursue service, design competitions, and courses that serve communities in need (, (2004-2006).