Geosciences Department
David Gillikin, associate professor of Geology

David Gillikin

Job Title
Professor of Geology
Director of Environmental Science, Policy and Engineering Program
F.W. Olin Center 311
Geology, ESPE

Areas of expertise

Isotope Geochemistry, Sclerochronology, Biogeochemistry

Research interests

My research has most recently involved the validation of bivalve shell geochemistry as a proxy of climate and environmental change. My interests are broad and have included biogeochemistry and ecophysiology. I have a specific interest in bridging the disciplines, including chemistry biology and geology, to address multi-faceted environmental problems. My current projects include estuarine and freshwater biogeochemistry, freshwater mussel shell geochemistry, isotope chemostratigraphy and chemical dendrochronology.

Field Areas: Belgium, France, North Carolina, Upstate New York, Ohio, Tennessee, Kenya, Central African Republic

Teaching interests

GEO 106: Restless Oceans
GEO 120: The Earth and Life Through Time
GEO 207: Stable Isotopes Geochemistry
GEO 305: Biogeochemistry
GEO 308: Advanced Oceanography


Geeza, T., D. P. Gillikin, B. McDevitt, K. Van Sice, N.R. Warner (2018). Accumulation of Marcellus Formation oil and gas wastewater metals in freshwater mussel shells. Environmental Science & Technology 52 (18), 10883-10892. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.8b02727

Kelemen, Z., D.P. Gillikin, S. Bouillon (2018). Relationship between river water chemistry and shell chemistry of two tropical African freshwater bivalve species. Chemical Geology 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2018.04.0

Nehme C., S. Verheyden, S.F.M. Breitenbach, D. P. Gillikin, A. Verheyden, H. Cheng, L. Edwards, J. Hellstrom, S. Noble, A. Farrant, D. Sahy, T. Goovaerts, G. Salen, and P. Claeys (2018). Climatic variability during penultimate interglacial and glacial periods recorded in a speleothem from Kanaan cave, Lebanon (Central Levant). Quaternary Research 90: 10–25. doi:10.1017/qua.2018.18.

Poulain, C., A. Lorrain, R. Mas, D. P. Gillikin, F. Dehairs, R. Robert, and Y.-M. Paulet (2010). Experimental shift of diet and DIC stable carbon isotopes: influence on shell δ13C values in the Manila clam Ruditapes philippinarum. Chemical Geology 272: 75-82.
Gillikin, D. P., K. A. Hutchinson and Y. Kumai (2009). Ontogenic increase in metabolic carbon in freshwater mussel shells (Pyganodon cataracta). JGR-Biogeosciences 114, G01007.
McConnaughey, T. A. and D. P. Gillikin (2008). Carbon isotopes in mollusk shell carbonates. Geo-Marine Letters 28: 287-299.
Gillikin, D. P., A. Lorrain, Y.-M. Paulet, L. André, and F. Dehairs (2008). Synchronous barium peaks in high-resolution profiles of calcite and aragonite marine bivalve shells. Geo-Marine Letters 28: 351-358.
Gillikin, D. P., A. Lorrain, §L. Meng and F. Dehairs (2007). A large metabolic carbon contribution to the δ13C record in marine aragonitic bivalve shells. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 71: 2936-2946.
Gillikin, D. P., F. Dehairs, A. Lorrain, D. Steenmans, W. Baeyens, and L. André (2006). Barium uptake into the shells of the common mussel (Mytilus edulis) and the potential for estuarine paleo-chemistry reconstruction. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 70: 395-407.

Additional media

Academic credentials

B.S., State University of New York at New Paltz; M.S., Vrije Universiteit Brussel; Ph.D., Vrije Universiteit Brussel