Title: Exploration of chemical signals from marine microalgae that structure the marine environment.
Speaker: Professor Georg Pohnert from Friedrich Schiller University, Department of Bioorganic Analytics, Jena, Germany.
Abstract: Unicellular algae in the plankton and in biofilms have established chemical means to interact with surrounding organisms. These processes contribute to the observed highly dynamic species successions and community structures. Algal exudates can mediate feeding activity of herbivores and algal / algal interactions but also structure the surrounding microbial community. We introduce an approach based on the combination of ecological and metabolomic investigations to address such chemically mediated interactions. Algae exhibit a high plasticity of metabolite production and uptake. We identify key regulators of interactions and prove their function in laboratory bioassays and the environment where we can manipulate plankton and biofilm communities in a targeted manner. The talk will highlight the family of zwitterionic metabolites involved in osmoregulation. These metabolites also regulate an intricate network of interactions and contribute substantially to global sulfur cycling. Consequences for future investigations of plankton ecology, algal physiology and chemical interactions are discussed.
Host: Jon Todd
Room: Elizabeth Fry Building, Room EFRY 01.02, University of East Anglia
View live on: MS Teams using this link: BIO Open Lecture, 29 June 2022, 2-3pm
All are welcome!