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Laboratory for Marine Microbial Ecology

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Presentation on theme: "Laboratory for Marine Microbial Ecology"— Presentation transcript:

1 Laboratory for Marine Microbial Ecology
Michael S. Rappé, Ph.D. Assistant Researcher Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology

2 Research Topics Marine bacterioplankton Deep subsurface biosphere
Coral-associated microbes

3 What is it we really want to know?
Who is there? (Diversity) How many of each “type” (species? ecotype? phylotype? functional group?) are present at any given time and location? (Spatial and temporal distribution) What are they doing? What resources and strategies are they using for obtaining energy and cellular carbon? How fast are they doing it? (Biogeochemical cycling) How do they interact (with each other or their host)?

4 Why HIMB? Unparalleled access to environments under study: Coral reefs
Sharp productivity gradient from near-shore to open ocean Unlimited access to pristine seawater for large volume (e.g. >100 L) cultivation experiments, mesocosms, etc Test bed for instrumentation intended for remote/autonomous implementation

5 Grants and Contracts Summary
PI or co-PI on five active grants totaling $10.5 million (NSF, NOAA, Hawaii Sea Grant, Agouron Institute) PI or co-PI on three active awards for high volume DNA sequencing (DOE, GBMF) Play roles in two research centers at UH, which total close to $25 million (C-MORE, PRCMB) Slightly over $2 million for direct support of research in my laboratory; over half ($1.1 million) is for ongoing or future research NSF funding secured through 2012 Four pending proposals

6 Personnel Graduate Students Amy Apprill, Oceanography, PhD
Darin Hayakawa, Microbiology, PhD Jennifer Salerno, Zoology, PhD Tracy Campbell, Oceanography, MS Sara Yeo, Oceanography, MS Undergraduate Interns Chelsea Dudoit Postdoctoral Scholars Alex Eiler, PhD, Uppsala University Megan Huggett, PhD, UNSW Technical Staff Misty Miller Naomi Wagoner

7 Marine Bacterioplankton
Develop new microbial systems for studying marine bacterioplankton via novel isolation and cultivation methodology Investigate the evolutionary processes that shape bacterioplankton clades and define taxa that can be treated as functional units by oceanographers studying ocean ecology Measure the spatial and temporal distribution of bacterioplankton lineages in Kaneohe Bay, the Hawaii Ocean Time-series Study Site, and as research cruise participants Comparative genomics of marine bacteria Perform genome-enabled, environmentally relevant microbial physiology with strains of important bacterioplankton Funding: C-MORE, PRCMB, GBMF, DOE, NSF

8 Coral-Associated Microbes
Identify microorganisms associated with colonies of healthy corals common to the Hawaiian islands Map coral-associated microbial lineages at a range of spatial and temporal scales Compare CAM communities between apparently healthy corals and those exhibiting disease and/or bleaching Investigate microorganisms present in different life stages (egg, larvae) of corals, and compare them to adults Isolate major groups of coral-associated microorganisms for laboratory-based experimentation and analysis Funding: NOAA, NSF, PRCMB

9 Deep Subsurface Biosphere
2600 m 2900 m Identify and quantify the microorganisms present in deep subsurface crustal fluids Assay the metabolic potential of the deep subsurface microbiota by nutrient enrichment, culturing, and genomics Develop new environmental microbiology tools for remote sampling and manipulations Funding: NSF

10 Future Research Endeavors
The future of microbial oceanography and environmental microbiology lies in collaborative, multi-disciplinary research such as that found in C-MORE and PRCMB. My planned research endeavors will either take advantage of the multi-investigator, multi-disciplinary centers and their existing infrastructure or use them as a model for future collaborative science Sensor technology and the remote acquisition of microbial community structure and physiological data Promote HIMB as a test site for microbial sensor development and a platform for mesocosm experimentation

11 Relation to SOEST Priority Areas and Issues
Ocean observing Bigeochemistry of marine microorganisms Coral health

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