Oxygen minimum zones (OMZs) occur throughout the world’s oceans but vary substantially in biological, chemical, and physical properties, notably the levels of primary production and oxygen availability. These areas are expanding due to climate warming and human modification of coastal zones. Complex microbial communities dominate OMZs and OMZ expansion is predicted to affect microbial biogeochemical processes, with potentially significant effects for oceanic carbon and nitrogen cycles. However, OMZs vary substantially in chemical and physical properties, including the level of oxygen depletion. This project focuses on exploring microbial diversity and function across a range of low-oxygen systems and to understand the role of viruses in modulating anaerobic microbial metabolisms in OMZs.
Proposer’s Name: Frank Stewart