Professor Melanie Leng

Mel Leng

Honorary Research Professor

Direct contact:

Research Group: Crustal Processes

Research Interests

Research focus includes:

  1. Current and past freshwater contributions into the Antarctic Ocean and effects on ocean circulation (the first results from this research were recently published by Nature Geoscience and EPSL).
  2. Climate influences on Northern Europe and effects on migration and endemism.
  3. Climate-driven human evolution, innovation, and dispersal through Africa.
  4. Major climatic boundary thresholds through geological time.
  5. Understanding biogeochemical cycling using isotope techniques.
  6. Development of stable isotope techniques in relation to current environmental issues.
  7. Developing research within the International Continental scientific Drilling Program (since UK became a member in April 2012): Lake Ohrid (UK-PI), Lake Challa (Co-I), Hominin evolution (Co-I), Mochras and Tanzania (Co-I). The broad themes that these projects address are climate influences on the Earth and its inhabitants through geological time.

Key Publications

  • Pike, J., Swann, G.A.E., Leng, M.J., Snelling, A. 2013. Glacial discharge along the west Antarctic Penninsula during the Holocene. Nature Geoscience, 6, 199-202.
  • Chapligin, B., Leng, M.J., Webb, E., Alexandre, A., Dodd, J.P., Ijiri, A., Lücke, A., Shemesh, A., Abelmann, A., Herzschuh, U., Longstaffe, F.J., Meyer, H., Moschen, R., Okazaki, Y., Rees, N., Sharp, Z.D., Sloane, H.J., Sonzogni, C., Swann, G.E.A., Sylvestre, F., Tyler, J.T., Yam, R. Inter-laboratory comparison of oxygen isotopes from biogenic silica. 2011. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 75, 7242-7256.
  • Leng, M.J., Jones, M.D., Frogley, M.F., Eastwood, W.J., Kendrick, C.P., Roberts, C.N. 2010. Detrital carbonate influences on bulk oxygen and carbon isotope composition of lacustrine sediments from the Mediterranean. Global and Planetary Change, 71, 175-182.
  • Leng, M.J. and Sloane, H.J. 2008. Combined oxygen and silicon isotope analysis of biogenic silica. Journal of Quaternary Science, 23, 313-319.
  • Reynolds, B.C., Aggarwal, J., Andre, L., Baxter, D., Beucher, C., Brzezinski, M.A., Engström, E., Georg, R.B., Land, M., Leng, M.J., Opfergelt, S., Rodushkin, I., Sloane, H.J., van den Boorn, S.H.J.M., Vroon, P.Z., Cardinal, D. 2007. An inter-laboratory calibration of Si isotope reference materials. Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 22, 561-568.
  • Leng, M.J. and Barker, P.A. 2006. A review of the oxygen isotope composition of lacustrine diatom silica for palaeoclimate reconstruction. Earth Science Reviews, 75, 5-27.
  • Leng, M.J. and Marshall, J.D. 2004. Palaeoclimate interpretation of stable isotope data from lake sediments. Quaternary Science Reviews, 23, 811-831.
  • Barker, P.A., Street-Perrott, F.A., Leng, M.J., Greenwood, P.B., Swain, D.L., Perrott, R.A., Telford, J., Ficken, K.J. 2001. A 14 ka oxygen isotope record from diatom silica in two alpine tarns on Mt Kenya. Science, 292, 2307-2310.


  • Stable isotope geochemistry


Share this page: