Education and Appointments:

2009-2016 Study in China Universtity of Geosciences(Wuhan) for Doctor Degree.

2013-2015 Study at University of Birmingham as a joint-training PhD student.

2005-2009 Study in China Universtity of Geosciences(Wuhan) for Bachelor degree.

Current Research Interest:

My research interests are focused on the use of geochemical tracers preserved in cave stalagmites, to reconstruct past environmental/climate evolution. Specifically, we conduct a series of cave monitoring work and model simulations to confirm the mechanism between speleothem ’proxies’ changes and regional climate indexes (temperature, precipitation, pH and pCO2). After that, we establish records of past environmental change over numerous time scales (seasonal to glacial-interglacial scale), ranging from the last two centuries to the 1 million years ago, using various isotope systems and elemental tracers encoded in these natural archives. My work also involves atmosphere-ocean climate models to elucidate the mechanisms for the changes observed in the proxies.

Research grants:

  1. Cave stalagmite biomarkers reconstruct the temperature and hydrological changes in the middle reaches of Yangtze River region during the MIS11 (no. 41807419). National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). 2019-2021. (PI)
  2. Methane cycle driven by cave microorganisms in karst groundwater system and its ecological effects (no. 91951208). National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). 2020-2023. (Co-l)
  3. Geolipid records for the spatiotemporal evolution of temperature and hydroclimate in East and Central China since late Miocene (no. 41830319). National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). 2019-2023. (Co-l)
  4. Microbial lipid response to pH and its indication to aridity and acidification in critical zones (no. 41330103). National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). 2014-2018. (Co-l)
  5. Temporal and spatial distribution of geological microbial functional groups in the cave system of western Hubei and their paleoenvironmental significance (no. 41130207). National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). 2012-2016. (Co-l)

WANG Canfa

Research Associate

State Key Laboratory of Biogeology and Environmental Geology

China University of Geosciences


Honors and Awards:

China Scholarship Council Scholarship Program, Joint-Training PhD (no. 201306410031). China Scholarship Council. 2013-2015.

Changjiang Scholarship, China, 2007

Outstanding Postdoctorate Award, China, 2005

Selected Publications (* author for correspondence):


Canfa Wang, James A. Bendle, Sarah E. Greene, Michael L. Griffiths, Junhua Huang, Heiko Moossen, Hongbin Zhang, Kate Ashley, Shucheng Xie*. Speleothem biomarker evidence for a negative terrestrial feedback on climate during Holocene warm periods. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 2019, 525: 115754


Canfa Wang, James Bendle, Hongbin Zhang, Yi Yang, Deng Liu, Junhua Huang, Jingwei Cui, Shucheng Xie*, Holocene temperature and hydrological changes reconstructed by bacterial 3-hydroxy fatty acids in a stalagmite from central China. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2018, 192: 97-105


Canfa Wang, James Bendle, Yi Yang, Huan Yang, Huiling Sun, Junhua Huang, Shucheng Xie*, Impacts of pH and temperature on soil bacterial 3-hydroxy fatty acids: Development of novel terrestrial proxies. Organic Geochemistry, 2016, 94: 21-31


Yi Yang, Canfa Wang*, James A. Bendle, Xiaoguo Yu, Chao Gao, Xiaoxia Lü, Xiaoyan Ruan, Ruicheng Wang, Shucheng Xie. "A new sea surface temperature proxy based on bacterial 3-hydroxy fatty acids." Organic Geochemistry, 2020, 141: 103975


Canfa Wang, Hongbin Zhang, Xianyu Huang, Junhua Huang, Shucheng Xie*, Optimization of acid digestion conditions on the extraction of fatty acids from stalagmites, Frontiers of Earth Science, 2012, 6 (1): 109-114


Hongye Pei, Canfa Wang, Yongbo Wang, Huan Yang, Shucheng Xie. Distribution of microbial lipids at an acid mine drainage site in China: Insights into microbial adaptation to extremely low pH conditions. Organic Geochemistry, 2019 134, 77-91


Yang Pu, Canfa Wang, Philip A. Meyers*, Origins of biomarker aliphatic hydrocarbons in sediments of alpine Lake Ximencuo, China. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 2017, 475: 106-114


Hongbin Zhang, Michael L. Griffiths, Junhua Huang*, Yanjun Cai, Canfa Wang, Fan Zhang, Hai Cheng, Youfeng Ning, Chaoyong Hu, Shucheng Xie*, Antarctic link with East Asian summer monsoon variability during the Heinrich Stadial-Bølling interstadial transition, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 2016, 453: 243-251


Yi Yang, Canfa Wang, Hongbin Zhang, Junhua Huang, Shucheng Xie*, Influence of extraction methods on the distribution pattern and concentration of fatty acids and hydroxy fatty acids in soil samples: Acid digestion versus saponification,  Geochemical Journal, 2016, 50: 439-443


Linfeng Gong, Hongmei Wang*, Xin Xiang, Xuan Qiu, Qiao Liu, Ruicheng Wang, Rui Zhao, Canfa Wang, pH Shaping the Composition of sqhC-Containing Bacterial Communities. Geomicrobiology Journal, 2014, 32: 433-444


Xianyu Huang, Canfa Wang, Jinxiang Zhang, Guido L. Wiesenberg, Ze Zhang, Shucheng Xie*, Comparison of free lipid compositions between roots and leaves of plants in the Dajiuhu Peatland, central China. Geochemical Journal, 2011, 45: 365-373


Xiuli Li, Canfa Wang, Junhua Huang, Chaoyong Hu, Shucheng Xie*, Seasonal variation of fatty acids from drip water in Heshang Cave, central China. Applied Geochemistry, 2011, 26: 341-347


Xianyu Huang, Canfa Wang, Jiantao Xue, Philip A. Meyers, Ze Zhang, Kaijia Tan, Zhiqi Zhang, Shucheng Xie*, Occurrence of diploptene in moss species from the Dajiuhu Peatland in southern China. Organic Geochemistry, 2010, 41: 321-324

Oral Presentation:

  1. “Speleothem biomarker evidence for a negative terrestrial feedback on climate during Holocene warm periods”. The 6th  Young Scientist Forum of Earth Science, Xining, China, June, 2019.
  2. “Temperature and Hydrological Changes Reconstructed by Novel Proxies Based on Bacterial 3-Hydroxy Fatty Acids”. AGU Fall Meeting, Washington DC, USA. 10-14 December, 2018.
  3. “Novel environmental proxies based on bacterial 3-hydroxy fatty acids and their applications in stalagmite”. The 5th Bio-Organic Geochemistry meeting, Hangzhou, China. 31 October – 1 November, 2017.
  4. “Novel environmental proxies based on bacterial 3-hydroxy fatty acids and their applications in stalagmite”. Annual meeting of Chinese Geoscience Union, Beijing China. 15-18 October, 2016.
  5. “Optimization of acid digestion on stalagmite hydroxyl fatty acids”. International Conference of Geobiology, China, 3-6 June, 2010.

Poster Presentation:

  1. “Distribution of Fatty Acids in Stalagmite in Response to the Holocene Climate Change in South China” Climate Change: The Karst Record VIII (KR8) conference, Austin, Texas, USA, 21-24 May, 2017.
  2.  “Environmental-impact distribution of microbial hydroxyl fatty acids in soils from Shennongjia Mountain in Hubei, China.” 25th meeting of the British Organic Geochemical Society Meeting, Liverpool, UK, 10-11 July, 2014.
  3. “Distribution of Fatty Acids in Stalagmite in Response to the Holocene Climate Change in South China” 6th International Conference on Climate Change -the Karst Record,Birmingham, UK, 26-30 June, 2011.