St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center
The Microbial Ecology of Deep-Sea Coral Ecosystems task of the DISCOVRE project is focused on the identification, characterization, and enumeration of the microbial communities present in corals and sediments in these habitats, including sites in the Gulf of Mexico and deepwater canyons off the eastern coast of the United States. Read more in the Overview.
Corals have an associated microbiomea microbial community that is an integrated part of their biology. Identifying and characterizing these microbial communities will increase understanding of coral biology, symbiosis, microbial diversity, and may uncover novel sources of enzymes or pharmaceuticals.
Soft sediments are home to a wide variety of small animals like brittle stars, worms, crustaceans…and millions of microbes. Estimating the microbial biomass and variations in taxa will add another level to benthic ecology and food web studies of these sediment communities.
All underwater surfaces are rapidly covered in biofilms of living things, starting with microbes. Identifying and characterizing microbial biofilms on a variety of substrates will provide insight into the physical and biological controls on the location of deep-sea coral ecosystems.
Aug. 1–3, 2017: Roger Williams University is sponsoring a workshop aimed at applying the latest research on model organism Astrangia poculata, the Northern Star Coral, to solutions for tropical coral reef health across the globe. Christina Kellogg was invited to bring her expertise in deep-sea coral systems and microbiomes to the workshop this year to develop new research directions.
Coral-associated bacterial diversity is conserved across two deep-sea Anthothela species - Frontiers in Microbiology
Cultured fungal associates from the deep-sea coral Lophelia pertusa - Deep-Sea Research
Characterization of culturable bacteria isolated from the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa - FEMS Microbiology Ecology