Nitrogen (N) availability is an important factor controlling productivity in estuaries. Relatively little is known about how the abundance, diversity, and distribution of estuarine N-cycling microbes are affected by environmental change. The researchers will investigate the structure and function of microbial communities, particularly those related to N and carbon (C) cycling, in the San Francisco Bay-Delta (SFBD)—the largest estuary on the west coast of North America. Sequencing will span the diverse estuarine gradient, including both water and sediment from high-nutrient riverine regions, brackish transition zones, and marine regions collected as a ‘time series’ during USGS monthly monitoring cruises, which provide a vast array of environmental data to leverage against sequencing data. This project will generate catalogs of metagenomic, metatranscriptomic, and 16S rRNA sequences to compare with extensive physicochemical and biogeochemical meta-data at an unprecedented spatial and temporal scale.
Proposer: Christopher Francis, Stanford University