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From the sea to the lab

We study how biology interacts with the atmosphere and the oceans to change global patterns in the movement of carbon and other elements.  Our experiments begin at sea, but we carry this research into the laboratory, where we work with microbial cells and genome sequences to discover new cell types and new biochemical transformations of matter.  Our goals are to understand how these extraordinary cells evolved, how they function, and how planktonic ecosystems will change in response to ocean warming.

Research interests

Ecology, evolution and systems biology of Pelagibacterales (SAR11) marine bacteria; new technologies for culturing bacteria; the marine carbon cycle.

Current research projects

High Throughput Microbial Cultivation Lab

Dr. Stephen Giovannoni also manages Oregon State University's High Throughput Cultivation Laboratory (HTCL), which pioneered automated methods for isolating microbes under environmentally realistic conditions. The HTCL discovered many new microorganisms and now distributes cell cultures and DNA to researchers around the world. The HTCL's focus on developing cell cultures as model systems is fostering deep exploration of the "dark matter" of microbial diversity - the microbes that shape global environments but have long defied controlled study in laboratory settings.

Learn more about the HTCL