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Record Details

Record 99 of 5819
Biogeochemical Processes in Microbial Ecosystems
Author and Affiliation:
DesMarais, David J.(NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA United States)
DeVincenzi, Donald L. [Technical Monitor]
Abstract: The hierarchical organization of microbial ecosystems determines process rates that shape Earth's environment, create the biomarker sedimentary and atmospheric signatures of life and define the stage upon which major evolutionary events occurred. In order to understand how microorganisms have shaped the global environment of Earth and potentially, other worlds, we must develop an experimental paradigm that links biogeochemical processes with ever-changing temporal and spatial distributions of microbial population, and their metabolic properties. Photosynthetic microbial mats offer an opportunity to define holistic functionality at the millimeter scale. At the same time, their Biogeochemistry contributes to environmental processes on a planetary scale. These mats are possibly direct descendents of the most ancient biological communities; communities in which oxygenic photosynthesis might have been invented. Mats provide one of the best natural systems to study how microbial populations associate to control dynamic biogeochemical gradients. These are self-sustaining, complete ecosystems in which light energy absorbed over a diel (24 hour) cycle drives the synthesis of spatially-organized, diverse biomass. Tightly-coupled microorganisms in the mat have specialized metabolisms that catalyze transformations of carbon, nitrogen. sulfur, and a host of other elements.
Publication Date: Jan 01, 2001
Document ID:
20010119225
(Acquired Dec 14, 2001)
Subject Category: LIFE SCIENCES (GENERAL)
Document Type: Preprint
Meeting Information: National Astrobiology Institute Meeting; 10-12 Apr. 2001; Washington, DC; United States
Meeting Sponsor: National Astrobiology Inst.; Washington, DC United States
Contract/Grant/Task Num: RTOP 344-50-92-02
Financial Sponsor: NASA Ames Research Center; Moffett Field, CA United States
Organization Source: NASA Ames Research Center; Moffett Field, CA United States
Description: 1p; In English
Distribution Limits: Unclassified; Publicly available; Unlimited
Rights: No Copyright
NASA Terms: BIOGEOCHEMISTRY; ECOSYSTEMS; MICROORGANISMS; POPULATIONS; BIOMASS; INFRARED SPECTRA; ANAEROBES; MILLIMETER WAVES; CARBON; NITROGEN; SULFUR
Availability Source: Other Sources
Availability Notes: Abstract Only
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