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Seminar: Sarah Andrew- UNC

January 15, 2020 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Photo of UNCCH Marine Sciences Postdoctoral Researcher Sarah AndrewUNC-CH’s Department of Marine Sciences is proud to host a seminar by Sarah Andrew.¬†This event is scheduled for Wednesday, January 15th, at 12:30 pm in room G201 on the ground floor of Murray/Venable Hall at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This seminar will also be broadcast live to seminar room 222 at the Institute of Marine Sciences (IMS) in Morehead City, NC and online via Zoom (Meeting ID: 501-070-231).

Presenter Affiliation: Postdoc Researcher, UNC-Chapel Hill

Title: Physiological and molecular adaptations in Antarctic phytoplankton.

Abstract: Southern Ocean phytoplankton have been shown to overcome the low light and low iron (Fe) environment through genomic and physiological adaptations. Together, these adaptations allow the efficient use of light and Fe to photosynthesise optimally in this cold polar region. Through biological and physical processes, the Southern Ocean (SO) accounts for approximately 40% of global carbon fixation. Model projections indicate that light, temperature, Fe and CO2 (thus pH) in the Southern Ocean are likely to change simultaneously in the future due to changing climate. Although prior investigations have constrained the response of SO species to changes of individual environmental variables, multiple species responses to concurrent changes is unclear. My PhD research utilises physiological measurements and molecular biological tools to explore adaptation responses and biochemical strategies of Southern Ocean phytoplankton to environmental changes. This study adds to a growing research focus which aims to understand how marine biota will respond to climate changes over the coming century. It also aims to uncover underlying adaptations that allow SO phytoplankton to fix and export carbon in spite of cold temperatures, low light and growth limiting iron concentrations in this region. The evidence presented discusses the evolutionary ramifications for dispersal into the SO and suggests different evolutionary histories of SO diatoms isolated from the same location.


January 15, 2020
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Event Category:



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