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Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:Institute for Systems Biology
  • Monica Orellana
  • (206) 732-1302
  • Nitin Baliga
Award Date:06/19/2013
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 1,800,000
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 1,800,000
  • FY 2013=$1,800,000
Start Date:07/01/2013
End Date:06/30/2018
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.074
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:Ocean Acidification: A Systems Biology Approach to Characterize Diatom Response to Ocean Acidification and Climate Change
Federal Award ID Number:1316206
DUNS ID:135646524
Program:Cellular Dynamics and Function
Program Officer:
  • Charles Cunningham
  • (703) 292-2283

Awardee Location

Street:401 Terry Avenue North
Awardee Cong. District:07

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:Institute for Systems Biology
Street:401 Terry Avenue North
Cong. District:07

Abstract at Time of Award

Diatoms account for approximately 40 percent of primary production in the world's oceans and are the most productive marine phytoplankton group. They form the basis of food webs in coastal and ocean upwelling areas that support important fisheries and have a major role in global carbon and silicon cycles. The goal of this project is to understand the impact of ocean acidification, in combination with other stressors, on the marine diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana. This project will generate a predictive model of expression of all genes of this diatom that can be used to forecast the diatom's response to projected environmental scenarios to an acidifying ocean. A combination of laboratory and field studies will be used; diatoms will be grown under carbon dioxide concentrations that reflect today's values as well as future predicted conditions and light levels and nutrients concentrations will also be varied. Physiological and gene expression responses will be measured and integrated using computational and modeling methods to gain an unbiased, systems-level understanding of the response of diatoms to ocean acidification. This combined approach will enable the forecasting and prediction of the diatom's response to environmental change and the elucidation and genomic interpretation of biochemically relevant processes in natural environment. Broader impacts: Results and the predictive model from this study can be coupled with environmental models to forecast the role and behavior of diatoms in the changing seas. In addition to the multidisciplinary training of a post-doctoral fellow and a graduate student this project will engage 3 high school teachers and their students. The investigators will continue to develop educational tools to increase the understanding of global carbon cycles by K-12 students, a generation that will be increasingly affected by the environmental changes that include ocean acidification.

Publications Produced as a Result of this Research

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Hennon, G.M.M., P. Quay, R. Morales, L. Swanson and E.V. Armbrust "Acclimatation conditions modify physiological response of the diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana to elevated CO2 concentrations in a nitrate limited chemostat" J. Phycol., v.50, 2014, p.243-253.

Hennon, G. M. M.,,Ashworth, J., Groussman, R. D., Berthiaume, C., Morales, R.L., Baliga, N.S., Orellana, M. V., Armbrust, E. V. "Diatom acclimation to elevated CO2 via cAMP signalling and coordinated gene expression" Nature Climate Change,, 2015, p.http://ww. doi:10.1038/NCLIMATE2683 

Ashworth, J., S. Turkarslan, M. Harris, M.V. Orellana, and N. S. Baliga. "Pan-transcriptomic analysis identifies coordinated and orthologous functional modules in the diatoms Thalassiosira pseudonana and Phaeodactylum tricornutum" Marine Genomics, v.26, 2016, p.21. doi: 

Ludwig, C. M., M. V. Orellana, M. DeVault, Z. Simon, and N. S. Baliga. "Engaging students in solving a systems-level, global problem." The Science Teacher, v.82, 2015, p.41.

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