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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:Oregon State University
  • Stephen J Giovannoni
  • (541) 737-1835
Award Date:08/08/2008
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 479,208
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 479,208
  • FY 2008=$479,208
Start Date:08/15/2008
End Date:07/31/2013
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.050
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:MO: Collaborative Research: Transitions in the Surface Layer and the Role of Vertically Stratified Microbial Communities in the Carbon Cycle- An Oceanic Microbial Observatory
Federal Award ID Number:0802004
DUNS ID:053599908
Parent DUNS ID:053599908

Awardee Location

Awardee Cong. District:04

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:Oregon State University
Cong. District:04

Abstract at Time of Award

The focus of this proposal is the role of bacterioplankton microbial community stratification in the ocean carbon cycle. Complex biological, chemical and physical processes control the efficiency of carbon transfer from the euphotic zone ocean to the deep sea, where sequestration is a possibility. Most organic carbon exported from the euphotic zone never leaves the surface 500 m, with approximately ninety percent of the exported organic matter being remineralized in the mesopelagic zone (140 - 1000 m). Microbial communities are vertically stratified in the oceans, particularly in the surface layer (0-300 m), which spans the region of deep mixing events and transition from the euphotic zone to the upper mesopelagic - the region of highest carbon remineralization activity. The premise of this proposal is that stratified bacterioplankton clades engage in specialized biogeochemical activities that can be identified by integrated oceanographic and microbiological approaches. Specifically, the objective of this proposal is to assess if the mesopelagic microbial community rely on diagenetically altered organic matter and subcellular fragments that are produced by microbial processes in the euphotic zone and delivered into the upper mesopelagic by sinking or mixing. In past efforts this microbial observatory had greater success cultivating members of the euphotic zone microbial community, and revealed an unanticipated growth requirement for reduced sulfur compounds in alphaproteobacteria of the SAR11 clade. Genomic information showed that intense competition for substrates imposes trade-offs on bacterioplankton - there are regions of N dimensional nutrient space where specialists win. We postulate that specific growth requirements may explain some the regular spatial and temporal patterns that have been observed in upper mesopelagic bacterioplankton communities, and the difficulties of culturing some of these organisms. The specific objectives of this project are: 1) to produce 13C and 15N labeled subcellular (e.g., soluble, cell wall, and membrane) and DOM fractions from photosynthetic plankton cultures and use stable isotope probing to identify specific clades in the surface and upper mesopelagic microbial community that assimilate fractions of varying composition and lability. 2) to use fluorescence in situ hybridization approaches to monitor temporal and spatial variability of specific microbial populations identified from the SIP and HTC experiments. To increase resolution we will use CARD-FISH protocols. 3) to measure the proteomes of bacterioplankton communities to identify highly translated genes in the surface layer and upper mesopelagic, and community responses to seasonal nutrient limitation. 4) and, to cultivate these organisms via high throughput culturing (HTC) by pursuing the hypothesis that they require specific nutrient factors and/or diagenetically altered organic substrates. Complete genome sequences from key organisms will be sought and used as queries to study patterns of natural variation in genes and populations that have been associated with biogeochemically important functions. This project will make cultures of novel bacterioplankton and genome sequences available to the scientific community. Findings from this research may be used directly in foodweb and ocean carbon cycle models. The educational component of this research brings microbial oceanography training to students from many disciplines, through a summer course, and specialized training to graduate and undergraduate students involved directly in research.

Publications Produced as a Result of this Research

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â?¢Treusch, A. H., Demir-Hilton, E., Vergin, K. L., Worden, A. Z., Carlson, C. A., Donatz, M. G., Burton, R. M., Giovannoni, S. J. "Phytoplankton distribution patterns in the northwestern Sargasso Sea revealed by small subunit rRNA genes from plastids." ISME J., v., 2011, p.. doi:doi:10.1038/ismej.2011.117 

â?¢Sun, J., Steindler, L., Thrash, J. C., Halsey, K. H., Smith, D. P., Carter, A. E., Landry, Z. C., Giovannoni, S. J. "One carbon metabolism in SAR11 pelagic marine bacteria." PLoS One, v.6, 2011, p.e23973. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0023973 

Carlson, CA; Morris, R; Parsons, R; Treusch, AH; Giovannoni, SJ; Vergin, K "Seasonal dynamics of SAR11 populations in the euphotic and mesopelagic zones of the northwestern Sargasso Sea" ISME JOURNAL, v.3, 2009, p.283. doi:10.1038/ismej.2008.11  View record at Web of Science

Giovannoni, S.J; K.L. Vergin "Seasonality in ocean microbial communities" Science, v.335, 2012, p.671.

Vergin K.L., B. Done, C.A. Carlson, S.J. Giovannoni. "Spatiotemporal distributions of rare bacterioplankton populations indicate a variety of adaptive strategies in the oligotrophic ocean" Aquat. Microb. Ecol., v., 2013, p.. doi:doi 10.3354/ame01661 

Parsons, R.J., C.E. Nelson, C.A. Carlson, C.C. Denman, A.J. Andersson, A.L. Kledzik, K.L. Vergin, S.P. McNally, A.H. Treusch and S.J. Giovannoni "Marine bacterioplankton community succession in seasonally anoxic waters of a sub-tropical sound: Devil?s Hole, Bermuda." Environ. Microbiol., v., 2014, p.. doi:doi:10.1111/1462-2920.12445 

Kevin L Vergin, Bánk Beszteri, Adam Monier, J Cameron Thrash, Ben Temperton, Alexander H Treusch, Fabian Kilpert, Alexandra Z Worden and Stephen J Giovannoni "High-resolution SAR11 ecotype dynamics at the Bermuda Atlantic Time-series Study site by phylogenetic placement of pyrosequences" ISME J, v.7, 2013, p.1322. doi:doi:10.1038/ismej.2013.32 

Schwalbach, MS; Tripp, HJ; Steindler, L; Smith, DP; Giovannoni, SJ "The presence of the glycolysis operon in SAR11 genomes is positively correlated with ocean productivity" ENVIRONMENTAL MICROBIOLOGY, v.12, 2010, p.490. doi:10.1111/j.1462-2920.2009.02092.  View record at Web of Science

Oh, H.-M., Giovannoni, S. J., Lee, K., Ferriera, S., Johnson, J., Cho J.-C. "Complete genome sequence of Robiginitalea biformata HTCC2501" J. Bac., v.191(22), 2009, p.7144. doi:10.1128/JB.01191-09 

Treusch, AH; Vergin, KL; Finlay, LA; Donatz, MG; Burton, RM; Carlson, CA; Giovannoni, SJ "Seasonality and vertical structure of microbial communities in an ocean gyre" ISME JOURNAL, v.3, 2009, p.1148. doi:10.1038/ismej.2009.6  View record at Web of Science

Beszteri, B; Temperton, B; Frickenhaus, S; Giovannoni, SJ "Average genome size: a potential source of bias in comparative metagenomics" ISME JOURNAL, v.4, 2010, p.1075. doi:10.1038/ismej.2010.2  View record at Web of Science

Carini, P., E.O. Campbell, J. Morré, S.A. Sañudo-Wilhelmy, B. Temperton, S.E. Bennett, J. Cameron Thrash, T. Begley and S.J. Giovannoni "Discovery of a SAR11 growth requirement for thiamin?s pyrimidine precursor and its distribution in the Sargasso Sea" ISME J., v., 2014, p.. doi:doi: 10.1038/ismej.2014.61 

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