Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Understanding The Oceans Microbes Is Key To The Earth's Future

Date:
December 7, 2005
Source:
American Society for Microbiology
Summary:
Life on Earth may owe its existence to tiny microorganisms living in the oceans, but the effect of human-induced change on the vital services these microbes perform for the planet remains largely unstudied, says a report released today by the American Academy of Microbiology, entitled "Marine Microbial Diversity: The Key to Earth's Habitability."

Life on Earth may owe its existence to tiny microorganisms living in the oceans, but the effect of human-induced change on the vital services these microbes perform for the planet remains largely unstudied, says a report released today by the American Academy of Microbiology, entitled Marine Microbial Diversity: The Key to Earth's Habitability.

"Since life most likely began in the oceans, marine microorganisms are the closest living descendants of the original forms of life," says Jennie Hunter-Cevera of the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute, one of the authors of the report, "They are also major pillars of the biosphere; their unique metabolisms allow marine microbes to carry out many steps of the biogeochemical cycles that other organisms are unable to complete. The smooth functioning of these cycles is necessary for life to continue on earth."

Early marine microorganisms also helped create the conditions under which subsequent life developed. More than two billion years ago, the generation of oxygen by photosynthetic marine microorganisms helped shape the chemical environment in which plants, animals, and all other life forms have evolved.

"A great deal of research on the biogeography of marine microorganisms has been carried out, but many unknowns persist and more work is needed to elucidate and understand their complexity," says co-author David Karl of the University of Hawaii. "Uppermost on this list of questions is what effects human-induced changes will have on the services marine microbes perform for the planet. Research on marine microbiology must continue or accelerate in order to solve these problems."

The report is the outcome of a colloquium convened by the Academy in April 2005 in San Francisco. Experts in microbial physiology, ecology, genetics, oceanography, invertebrate biology and virology gathered to discuss the importance of marine microorganisms to life on this planet, the biogeography of these organisms, their roles in symbiotic relationships and pathogenesis, their metabolic capabilities, their impacts on humans, and goals for research, training, and education in marine microbiology.

The report outlines a number of recommendations for future research in marine microbiology including the roles of both climate change and human activities on the populations and processes of marine microbes. The report also recommends fostering multidisciplinary collaborations and training as well as the development of a comprehensive marine microbiology textbook.

"Innovative approaches in research, education and training are critical for moving the field of marine microbiology forward," says Hunter-Cevera.

###

A full copy of the report and recommendations can be found on the Academy website at http://www.asm.org/Academy/index.asp?bid=2093.

The American Academy for Microbiology is the honorific leadership group of the American Society for Microbiology. The mission of the Academy is to recognize scientific excellence, as well as foster knowledge and understanding in the microbiological sciences. For more information about the American Society for Microbiology, contact Barbara Hyde at 202-942-9206 or visit www.asm.org.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society for Microbiology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Society for Microbiology. "Understanding The Oceans Microbes Is Key To The Earth's Future." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 December 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/12/051207180339.htm>.
American Society for Microbiology. (2005, December 7). Understanding The Oceans Microbes Is Key To The Earth's Future. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/12/051207180339.htm
American Society for Microbiology. "Understanding The Oceans Microbes Is Key To The Earth's Future." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/12/051207180339.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Volcano Erupts on Papua New Guinea

Raw: Volcano Erupts on Papua New Guinea

AP (Aug. 29, 2014) Several communities were evacuated and some international flights were diverted on Friday after one of the most active volcanos in the region erupts. (Aug. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Have Figured Out Why Rocks Move In Death Valley

Scientists Have Figured Out Why Rocks Move In Death Valley

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) The mystery of the moving rocks in Death Valley, California, has finally been solved. Scientists are pointing to a combo of water, ice and wind. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Big Waves, Minor Flooding from Hurricane

Big Waves, Minor Flooding from Hurricane

AP (Aug. 27, 2014) Thundering surf spawned by Hurricane Marie pounded the Southern California coast Wednesday, causing minor flooding in a low-lying beach town. High surf warnings were posted for Los Angeles County south through Orange County. (Aug. 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins