Edward F. DeLong, Ph.D.Co-Director, SCOPE
Professor, Department of Oceanography, University of Hawaii
Visiting Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Simons Foundation Lectures are free public colloquia related to basic science and mathematics. These high-level talks are intended for professors, students, postdocs and business professionals, but interested people from the metropolitan area are welcome as well.
Microbial life began in the sea and is integral to the function of all life on Earth. Until recently, though, oceanic microbial life was virtually invisible to biologists. Genome-enabled approaches can now reveal the inner workings of oceanic microbial communities and how those microbes sustain our living seas.
In this lecture, Edward DeLong will explain how oceanic microbial life controls and sustains ecosystem function in the sea. Despite the importance of the microbes, their small size, lack of morphological features and tremendous diversity has prohibited their detailed characterization in natural settings. New genomic technologies now allow microbial oceanographers to record “motion pictures” of microbial community dynamics in unprecedented detail. These microbial “motion pictures” are now revealing how our living seas function in space and time, from molecules to ecosystems.