New NASA funding!

We were funded by NASA to study how natural populations viruses control photosynthetic sulfur bacteria. Research shows that bacteria in seawater or corals are strongly influenced by viruses. We think that the blooms of purple bacteria in anoxic lakes may also be influenced by viral communities. If correct, this would revolutionize our understanding of the conditions that promote or prevent microbial blooms. To date, most of the controls have thought to been sunlight and sulfide; however, viruses may be the hidden figures behind the persistence and activity of photosynthetic bacteria.

This project is with: Alice Bosco Santos (University of Lausanne), Cynthia Silveira (U Miami), Joe Werne (U Pittsburgh) and Molly O’Beirne (U Pittsburgh)

More about NASA Exobiology here

Welcome ACS Project SEED interns

Bawi Sung and Nahum Gerezgher are both American Chemical Society Project SEED interns in our lab this summer. Bawi is studying Ordovician carbonates and Nahum is studying iron chemistry of a northern Indiana lake. Both are doing an awesome job.

Bawi Sung (foreground) and Nahum Gerezgher (background) homogenizing samples.

New sulfide-films method published!

Check out our films method that was published in Marine Chemistry.

We demonstrate that photographic film can capture the spatial concentrations and stable isotope compositions of dissolved sulfide from water columns and pore waters. These films can be used in a wide variety of environments such as our study of the highly dynamic production and oxidation of hydrogen sulfide in the mud of the seagrass meadow shown below.

Example of film deployed in seagrass bed. Photo by Roy Price.

Midwest Geobiology Symposium at IUPUI

MWGB 2017 was a lot of fun. We had an excellent collection of talks and posters from several schools throughout the Midwest. Generous support from the Agouron Institute, School of Science, and the Department of Earth Sciences made this event possible. Special thanks goes to Lisa Pratt from IU Bloomington for her keynote address about the future of space exploration.


Class field trip to study the Ordovician.

We took students on a tour of Ordovician rocks in Indiana and Ohio as part of my course in the Evolution of Earth and Life (G335). The field trip combined students from IUPUI, IPFW, and the University of Cincinnati.