News

New ONR grant to investigate Microbially Influenced Corrosion

Apr 12, 2024. A collaborative grant ($230,402) was awarded from the Office of Naval Research (MUST program) titled Microbially Influenced Corrosion of Materials in Marine Applications

 

New funding: SBIR contract to study marine biofilms

Apr 12, 2024. A NAVSEA SBIR contract ($54,926) was awarded, titled Transparent Surface Coatings in Marine Antifouling

 

Thesis proposal seminar

On Apr 5, 2024. Lucinda Manlick presented her MS research proposal seminar: Metagenomic Analysis of Marine Bacterial Biofilms on Microplastics

 

Thesis defense!

On Jan 11, 2024. Kenneth Boyle did an excellent job defending his MS in Marine Biology  “Marine Biofilm Community Assembly is Driven by Seasonality in the Coastal Northwestern Atlantic Ocean“. Congratulations Kenny for this exciting work!

 

Pilot study on microplastics funded by MIT SeaGrant

On Jan 11, 2024. We received a small grant for a pilot study from MIT SeaGrant for developing methodology for FTIR-microscopy to characterize microplastics.

New Cohort of STREAM Grant Projects Support Coastal Education and Community Science

 

Stem4Girls outreach event 

On Oct 28, 2023. This was our second year participating in the Stem4Girls event, this time with the workshop  “From Plankton to Plastic – Food Webs and Plastic Pollution in the Marine Environment“. Lucy did a great job designing and leading the workshop!

 

 

 

Ph.D. Defense by Abhishek Naik

On Oct 27, 2023. Abhishek Naik did a terrific job defending his dissertation on Marine biofilms on artificial structures as a model for microbial community succession and stability. Congratulations Abhi!

 

 

 

Publication in mSphere

16 October, 2023. Abhi is the first author on this paper in mSphere that was just published with co-authors at NUWC. The paper: Disturbance frequency directs microbial community succession in marine biofilms exposed to shear is a result of a collaborative study conducted in Stillwater Basin in Narragansett Bay. The work tested two antifouling technologies (foul-release paint and contactless underwater shear) representing pulse or press disturbance, respectively, on biofilm succession and stability. The results demonstrate high antifouling effectiveness of a combination of press+low frequency pulse disturbance and unexpected enrichment of shear tolerant taxa under high frequency shear. The results also showed high level of connectedness of certain diatoms and affiliated bacteria in the biofilms through the disturbance continuum, providing understanding of persisting associations and revealing potential targets for future antifouling technology development.

 

Publication in Environmental Microbiology

23 August, 2023. An article was published in Environmental Microbiology describing Vibrio cyclitrophicus L- and S-strain biofilm formation and association with marine Acartia tonsa copepods. The publication stems from graduate research by the lab alumnus Ryan Nuttall. Work with Green Fluorescent Protein-labelled strains demonstrated that small genetic differences  correlate with the initial colonization process of these Vibrio strains on marine copepods and that calcium is a major driver of strain specific differences in their biofilm formation. These intriguing results provide insights into the complexity of Vibrio spp. association with marine copepods and particles.

 

Publication of New Oceanic Global Database of Nitrogen fixation

15 August, 2023. An article was published in Earth System Science Data: Global oceanic diazotroph database version 2 and elevated estimate of global oceanic N2 fixation. The article is a large effort by Shao et al., and includes over 90 contributors.

Microbially Influenced Corrosion Study 2023 highlighted

July 2023. Our study at the Lloyd Center shoreline was highlighted on the Center’s website:

Study at Lloyd Center – Microbially-Influenced Corrosion in Marine Sediments  

 

Recent Defense

On May 10, 2023 Stephanie Richard successfully defended her M.S. in Marine Biology-  Impact of climate change on copepod microbiome. Congratulations Stephanie!

 

Recent and upcoming conferences

Stephanie Richard presented her work Impacts of climate change on copepod microbiome in the recent Microbiome conference in the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York (Nov 2022)

Kenny Boyle presented his research Microbial community assembly of marine biofilms in the coastal Northwestern Atlantic Ocean in the Sigma Xi conference at Dartmouth, MA in April 2023.

Abhishek Naik presented his research poster at the MUST research meeting in March 2023.

 

Instrumentation news

New FTIR instrumentation (Nicolet iN10 micro+iZ10) has arrived and has been installed in the lab.

We recently acquired an Agilent Novocyte flow cytometer and a new qPCR instrument.

 

Funding news

May 2023. New collaborative award: UMass Systems’s Office of Technology Commercialization & Ventures Technology Development Research Grant. Long-lasting super-hydrophobic surface for reducing marine biofouling. PI: H Ling (UMD Mechanical Engineering), Co-PI P Moisander.

Spring 2023. PADI foundation awarded us a grant for a pilot study on microplastics

Spring 2023. A new seed funding grant ($22,134) to investigate Microbially Influenced Corrosion in marine sediments. The project is collaborative with Ryan Beemer (Civil and Environmental Engineering).

Fall 2022. Woods Hole Sea Grant awarded us funding for a pilot study on microplastics

2022: Massachusetts Technology Collaborative award is supporting work in parallel with the new Marine and Environmental Biodegradability laboratory at the School of Marine Science

2020-2024 Research continues on Office of Naval Research-funded work on two collaborative projects: Advances in marine technology: New solutions to biofouling and: Antifouling property and lifetime of super-hydrophobic surfaces in marine environment.