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Patricia M. Dove

University Distinguished Professor
  • C.P. Miles Professor of Science
Patricia Dove 4
5109 Derring Hall

The Dove group investigates mineral-solution interactions in systems that contain polysaccharides, proteins, and other macromolecules. Much of their work is focused on the nucleation and growth of mineral phases (oxides and sparingly soluble materials) in biomineralization settings to form the functional structures that we know as skeletons and other organic-mineral composites. Their research has numerous applications to the design and synthesis of crystal-organic composite materials for drug delivery, tissue engineering, pharmaceutical and energy-related industries. 

Dove also has Virginia Tech appointments in the Department of Chemistry (Affiliate) and the Department of Materials Science and Engineering (Joint).



Chair of Class I (Mathematical and Physical Sciences), National Academy of Sciences

Past-president and Board of Directors, Virginia Academy of Science, Engineering, and Medicine

Virginia Bar Association, Member of Committee on Special Issues of National and State Importance

Council for Chemical Sciences, Geosciences, Biosciences (CSGB), US Department of Energy



Ph.D., Geochemistry, Princeton University, 1991

M.S., Geochemistry, Virginia Tech, 1984

B.S., Agronomy, Virginia Tech, 1980


Research Interests

Environmental geochemistry


Biomaterials, Biosustainable Materials

Carbonate and silica phases

Thermodynamics and kinetics of mineral-water interactions

Mergelsberg, S., P.M. Dove (2019) Composition Systematics in the Exoskeleton of the American Lobster, Homarus americanus and Implications for Malacostraca.  In Frontiers in Earth Science:  Characterization and interpretation of chemical heterogeneities in biominerals. 7:69, doi:10.3389/feart.2019.00069  Eds. D. Vielzeuf, C. Rollion-Bard, A. Sadekov, A. Perez-Huerta. 

Hoeher, A., S.T. Mergelsberg, O. Borkiewicz, P. M. Dove and F. Marc Michel (2019) In situ structural investigations of amorphous and crystalline materials using mixed-flow reactors. Acta Crystallographica Section A.

Dove, P.M., N. Han, A. F. Wallace (2019) Systematic Effect of Amino Acids and NaCl on Kinetic and Thermodynamic Barriers to Homogeneous Silica. Journal of Materials Research, Focus Issue: Understanding Water-Oxide Interfaces to Harness New Processes and Technologie.  34,

Blue, C., A.J. Giuffre, S.T. Mergelsberg, J.J. De Yoreo, and P.M. Dove (2017) Chemical and physical controls on the transformation of amorphous calcium carbonate (ACC) into crystalline CaCO3 polymorphs. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta.

Whittaker, M., P.M. Dove, D. Joester (2016) Nucleation on surfaces and in confinement.  MRS Bulletin. 41, Issue 05, May 2016, pp 388-392 doi: 10.1557/mrs.2016.90

De Yoreo J.J., Gilbert, P.U.P.A., Sommerdijk N.A.J.M., Penn R.L., Whitelam S., Joester D., Zhang H.Z., Rimer J.D., Navrotsky A., Banfield J.F., Wallace A.F., Michel F.M., Meldrum F.C., Cölfen H., and Dove P.M. (2015) Crystallization by particle attachment in synthetic, biogenic, and geologic environments. Science, 349, print extended abstract at pg. 498, online at aaa6760 DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa6760.  (Corresponding author: Dove)

Giuffre A.J., Gagnon A., De Yoreo J.J., and Dove P.M. (2015) Isotopic tracer evidence for the amorphous calcium carbonate to calcite transformation by dissolution–reprecipitation. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 165, 407–417.

Blue C. and Dove P.M. (2015) Chemical controls on the magnesium content of amorphous calcium carbonate. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 148, 23–33.

Hamm L.M., Giuffre A.J., Han N., Tao J., Wang D., De Yoreo J.J., and Dove P.M. (2014) Reconciling disparate views of template-directed nucleation through measurement of calcite nucleation kinetics and binding energies. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111, 1304-1309.

Giuffre A.J., Hamm L.M., Han N., De Yoreo J.J., and Dove P.M. (2013) Polysaccharide chemistry regulates kinetics of calcite nucleation through competition of interfacial energies. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 110, 9261-9266.

Han, N., C.R. Blue, J.J. De Yoreo, P.M. Dove (2013) The effect of carboxylates on the Mg content of calcites that transform from ACC. Water-Rock International.

Wang, D., T. Echigo, A.J. Giuffre, L.M. Hamm, J.D. Rimstidt, J.J. De Yoreo, J. Grotzinger, P.M. Dove (2012) Revisiting geochemical controls on patterns of carbonate deposition through the lens of multiple pathways to mineralization. Faraday Discussion: Biological Crystallization, 159, 371-386.

Wang, D., L. M. Hamm, R. J. Bodnar, P.M. Dove (2012) Raman spectroscopic characterization of the magnesium content in amorphous calcium carbonate. Journal of Raman Spectroscopy.  DOI 10.1002/jrs.3057.

Hu, Q., Nielsen, M.H., Freeman, C.L., Hamm, L.M., Tao, J., Lee, J.R.I, Han, T.Y.J., Becker, U., Harding, J.H., Dove, P.M., De Yoreo, J.J. (2012) The thermodynamics of calcite nucleation at organic interfaces: Classical vs. non-classical pathways. Faraday Discussion: Biological Crystallization, 159, 509-523.

Becker, T.S., Dove, J.E. and Dove, P.M. (2013).  "Experimental Creep Behavior and Modeling of Silicified Sand."  Ground Improvement, Telford, 166(2), 115-124.

Stephenson, A.E., J. Hunter, J.J. De Yoreo, P.M. Dove (2011) Effect of ionic strength of the Mg content of calcite: Toward a physical basis for minor element uptake during step growth. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta.

Dove, J.E., C. Schillaber, C.S. Becker, A.F. Wallace, P.M. Dove (2011) A Biologically Inspired Process for Improving Mechanical Properties of Sand. Jour. Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering137, 949-957.

Hamm, L.M., A.F. Wallace, P.M. Dove (2010) Molecular dynamics of ion hydration in the presence of small carboxylated molecules and implications for calcification. Jour. Physical Chemistry B, 114, 10488-10495.

P.M. Dove (2010) The rise of skeletal biominerals.  Elements:  Mineral Evolution. Mineralogical Society of America, 6, 37-42.

Wallace, A.F., G.V. Gibbs, Dove, P.M. (2010) Influence of ion-associated water on the hydrolysis of Si—O bonded interactions.  Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 114, 2534-2542.

De Yoreo, J.J., L. Zepeda-Ruiz, L.E. Wasylenki, S-P. Qiu, G. Gilmer, A. Chernov, P.M. Dove (2009) Revisiting BCF theory through molecular scale insights:  Consequences of kink-limited kinetics for growth and inhibition of sparingly soluble crystals. Crystal Growth and Design. 9, 5135-5144.

Wang, D., J.J. De Yoreo, P.M. Dove (2009) Systematic control of biomolecules on magnesium contents in amorphous calcium carbonate:  Insights for calcification.  Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences. 106: 21511-21516.

Wallace, A.F. J.J. De Yoreo and Dove, P.M. (2009) Kinetics of silica nucleation on carboxyl and amine-terminated surfaces: Insights for biomineralization, Journal of American Chemical Society, 131, 5244-5250.

Gibbs, G.V., A.F. Wallace, D.F. Cox, P.M. Dove, R.T. Downs, N.L. Ross, K.M. Rosso (2009) The role of directed van der Waals bonded interactions in the determination of the structures of molecular arsenate solids. Journal of Physical Chemistry A., 113, 736-749.

Stephenson, A.E., X. Wu, X. Wu, J.D. Hoyer, J.J. De Yoreo and Dove, P.M. (2008) Peptides enhance Mg contents in calcite:  Insights to origins of vital effects, Science, 322, 274-277.

Dove, P.M., N. Han, A.F. Wallace, J.J. De Yoreo (2008) Kinetics of amorphous silica dissolution and the paradox of the silica polymorphs. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, v.105, p. 9903-9908.

De Yoreo, J.J., P.M. Dove, A. Wierzbicki, and J.D. Hoyer (2008) Modification of calcium carbonate and calcium oxalate growth morphology and kinetics by carboxyl-rich biomolecules. Jour. Japanese Assoc. Crystal Growth, 35, 24-30.

De Yoreo, J.J., A. Wierzbicki, P.M. Dove (2007) New insights into mechanisms of biomolecular control on growth of inorganic crystals. Crystal Engineering Comm., 9, 1144-1152. (invited article for special issue on biomineralization).  (

Lee, J.R.I., T. Yong-Jin Han, T.M. Willey, D. Wang, R.W. Meulenberg, J. Nilsson, P.M. Dove, L.J. Terminello, T. van Buren, J.J. De Yoreo (2007) Structural development of mercaptophenol self-assembled monolayers and the overlying mineral phase during templated CaCO3 crystallization from a transient amorphous film. Jour. American Chemical Society.

Elhadj, S., J.J. De Yoreo, J. Hoyer, P. M. Dove (2006) Role of Molecular Charge and Hydrophilicity in Regulating the Kinetics of Crystal Growth. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 103, 19237-19242.

Elhadj, S., A. Salter, A. Wierzbicki, N. Han, J.J. De Yoreo, P. M. Dove (2006) Peptide controls on calcite mineralization: Polyaspartate chain length affects growth kinetics and acts as a stereochemical switch on morphology.  Crystal Growth and Design6, 197-201

Dove, P.M., N. Han and J.J. De Yoreo (2005) Classical nucleation theory predicts the dissolution and growth kinetics of quartz and silicate minerals. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 102, 15357-15362.

Dove, P.M. and C.M. Craven (2005) Silica surface charge in alkali chloride solutions reveals roots of ionic specificity. Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta. 69, 4963-4970.

Wasylenki, L.E., P.M. Dove and J.J. DeYoreo (2005) Effects of temperature and transport conditions on calcite growth in the presence of Mg2+:  Implications for paleothermometry. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 69, 4227-4236.

Wasylenki, L.E., P.M. Dove, D.S. Wilson, and J.J. DeYoreo (2005) Nanoscale effects of Sr on calcite growth:  An insitu AFM study in the absence of vital effects.  Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta. 69, 3017-3027.

De Yoreo, J.J. and P.M. Dove (2004) Shaping crystals with biomolecules. Science, 306, 1301-1302.  (invited Perspectives article about effects of magnesium and organics)

Davis, K.J., P.M. Dove, L.E. Wasylenki, J.J. De Yoreo (2004) Morphological consequences of differential Mg2+ incorporation at structurally distinct steps on calcite.  American Mineralogist, 89, 714-720.

Karlsson, M. C.M. Craven, P.M. Dove and W.H Casey (2001) Surface charge concentrations on silica in different 1.0 M metal chloride background electrolytes and implications for dissolution rates. Aquatic Geochemistry, 7, p. 13-32.

Orme, C.A., A. Noy, A. Wierzbicki, M.T. McBride, M. Grantham, H.H. Teng, P.M. Dove and J.J. DeYoreo (2001) Selective binding of amino acids to the atomic steps of calcite creates chiral structures. Nature, June 14, 411, p. 775-779.

Davis, K.J., P.M. Dove, and J.J. DeYoreo (2000) The role of magnesium as an impurity in calcite growth. Science, 290, p. 1134-1137.

Icenhower, J.P. and P.M. Dove (2000) The dissolution kinetics of amorphous silica into sodium chloride solutions:  Effects of temperature and ionic strength. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 64, 24, p. 4193-4203.

Teng, H.H., P.M. Dove, and J.J. DeYoreo (2000) Kinetics of calcite growth: Surface processes and relationships to macroscopic rate laws. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 64, p. 2255-2266.

Wawersik, W.R., J.W. Rudnicki, P. Dove, J. Harris, J.M. Logan, L. Pyrak-Nolte, F.M. Orr, Jr., P.J. Ortoleva, F. Richter, N. R. Warpinski, J.L. Wilson, T.F. Wong (2001) Terrestrial sequestration of CO2:  An assessment of research needs.  Advances in Geophysics. 43, p. 97-177.

Dove, P.M. (1999) The dissolution kinetics of quartz in dilute salt mixtures. Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta. 63, 3715-3727.

Teng, H.H., P.M. Dove, and J.J. DeYoreo (1999) Reversed calcium carbonate morphologies induced by microscopic growth kinetics: Insight into biomineralization. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 63, p. 2507-2512.

Teng, H., P.M. Dove, C.A. Orme and J.J. DeYoreo (1998) Thermodynamics of calcite growth:  Baseline for understanding biomineral formation. Science, 274, p. 724-727.

Dove, P.M. and Nix, C. (1997) Role of solvent-surface interactions in the electrolyte catalyzed kinetics of quartz dissolution. Geochimica Cosmochim. Acta  61, p. 3329-3340.

Teng, H. and P.M. Dove (1997) Crystal chemical controls of aspartate in the surface-directed dissolution of calcite:  Implications for biomineralization. American Mineralogist  82, p. 878-887.  (received MSA Best Paper Award)

Grantham, M.C. and Dove, P.M. and T.J. DiChristina (1997) Biogeochemistry of subsurface environments:  Investigation of bacterial effects on iron and aluminum oxyhydroxide coatings. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta.  61, p.4467-4477.

Grantham, M.E. and P.M. Dove (1996) Bacterial-mineral surface interactions:  Investigations using Fluid Tapping Mode Atomic Force Microscopy. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 60, p. 2473-2480.

Dove, P.M. and F. M. Platt (1996) Compatible real-time reaction rates of mineral dissolution by Atomic Force Microscopy. Chemical Geology, 127, p. 331-338.

Dove, J.E., J.D. Frost and P.M. Dove (1996) Geomembrane microtopography by Tapping Mode Atomic Force Microsopy. Geosynthetics International. 3, p. 227-245.

Dove, P.M. (1995) Geochemical controls on the kinetics of quartz fracture at subcritical tensile stresses. Journal of Geophysical Research. 100, p. 22,349-22359.

Dove, P.M. and C.A. Czank (1995) Surface chemical controls on the dissolution kinetics of the isostructural sulfates:  Barite, celestite and anglesite.  Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 59, p. 1907-1915.

Gillis, H.P., D.A. Choutov, P.A. Steiner IV, J.D. Piper, J.H. Crouch, Dove, P.M. and K.P. Martin (1995) Low Energy electron-enhanced etching of Si(100) in Hydrogen/Helium DC plasma. Applied Physics Letters. 66, p. 2475-2477.

Dove, P.M. (1994) The dissolution kinetics of quartz in sodium chloride solutions at 25 to 300°C. American Journal of  Science, 294, p. 665-712.

Berger, G., E. Cadore, J. Schott and P.M. Dove  (1994) Dissolution rate of quartz in Pb and Na electrolyte solutions.  Effect of coordination chemistry and reaction affinity. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. v. 58, p. 541-551.

Dove, P.M. and M.F. Hochella, Jr. (1993) Calcite precipitation mechanisms and inhibition by orthophosphate:  In situ observations by scanning force microscopy. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 57, p. 705-714.

Dove, P.M. and S.F. Elston (1992) The low-temperature dissolution kinetics of quartz in sodium chloride solutions: An analysis of existing data and a rate model for 25°C, pH 2-13, 0 - 0.5 m NaCl. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 56, p. 4147-4156.

Dove, P.M. (1992) Reply to Comment on "Kinetics of quartz dissolution in electrolyte solutions using a hydrothermal mixed flow reactor" Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta., 56, p. 4093.

Dove, P.M. and D.A. Crerar (1990)  Kinetics of quartz dissolution in electrolyte solutions using a hydrothermal mixed flow reactor.  Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 54, p. 955-969.

Crerar, D.A., R. Hellmann, P.M. Dove (1988) Dissolution kinetics of albite and quartz in hydrothermal solutions.  Chemical Geology, 70, 77-77.

Dove, P.M. and J.D. Rimstidt (1987) Reply to Comment on "The Solubility and Stability of Scorodite, FeAsO4•2H2O". American Mineralogist , 72, p. 669-672.

Rimstidt,  J.D. and P.M. Dove (1986) Mineral/solution reaction rates in a mixed flow reactor:  Wollastonite hydrolysis.  Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 50, p. 2509-2516.

Dove, P.M. and J.D. Rimstidt (1985) The solubility and stability of scorodite, FeAsO4•2H2O.  American Mineralogist, 70, p. 838-844.

Knight, B.M., K.J. Edgar, J.J. De Yoreo, P.M. Dove (2023) Chitosan as canvas for studies of macromolecular controls on CaCO3 biological crystallization. Biomacromolecules, 24, 1078- 1102.

Bañuelos J.L., et al. (2023) Oxide- and Silicate-Water Interfaces and Their Roles in Technology and the Environment. Chemical Reviews, 123, 10, 6413–6544. 

2022            International Mineralogical Association Medal for Excellence in Mineralogical Research

2017            Thomas Jefferson Medal for Outstanding Contributions to Natural Science

2014            Dana Medal, Mineralogical Society of America

2014            Hall of Distinction, Virginia Tech College of Science

2013            Governor of Virginia Outstanding Scientist Award

2012            Elected to the National Academy of Sciences

2010            Fellow, Geochemical Society and European Association of Geochemistry

2008            Fellow, American Geophysical Union

2005            DOE Best University Research Award, Analytical & Isotope Geochem. Symposium

2003            Best Poster Award:  American Conference on Crystal Growth

2000            Fellow, Mineralogical Society of America

1999            DOE Best University Research Award, Interfacial Processes Symposium

1998            Best Paper Award, Mineralogical Society of America

1996            F.W. Clarke Medal, Geochemical Society

1995            Amoco CETL Junior Faculty Teaching Excellence Award

1994            AMOCO/Class of 1969, Georgia Tech Teaching Fellow

1991 - 1993   Earth Sciences National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship

1991            Carnegie Mellon and Association of Princeton Alumni Award

1989 – 1990  Princeton University Harold W. Dobbs Honorific Graduate Fellowship

1989            Association for Women in Science Predoctoral Award

1989            Eli Lily Women in Science Award

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