People

Dr. Jed Fuhrman

McCulloch-Crosby Chair of Marine Biology

P.I. Dimensions in Biodiversity Project

Co-P.I. - USC Microbial Observatory

fuhrman[at]usc.edu
213-740-5757
AHF 211

Curriculum_Vitae_Jed_Fuhrman.doc 

 
 

Nathan Ahlgren

Postdoctoral researcher

ahlgren[@]usc.edu

Research Interests:

I am interested in characterizing interactions between marine bacteria and protists. My researches includes investigating how protist predation (grazing) alters community composition as well as looking for novel mutualistic interactions between bacteria and protists. I am using both whole community approaches enabled by 16S rRNA tag sequencing and single-cell approaches.

Lyria Berdjeb

Postdoctoral researcher

Research Interests:

I have a great interest in aquatic biological sciences with a focus on the microbial food web functioning. One of my main research objectives is to analyze the relative importance of both bottom-up (i.e., nutrient and autotrophic activity) and top-down (i.e., viral lysis, grazing by flaggellates) in driving the dynamic composition of prokaryotic communities in marine systems, by using either ecosystemic or experimental approaches. 

Jacob Cram

Graduate student

cram[at]usc.edu

213-740-5759 

AHF 231
 

Research Interests:

My primary interest is in how planktonic bacterial communities (the relative proportions of  bacterial taxa we find in a given environment ) vary across time and how environmental factors shape this variability. I have compiled and investigated a ten year dataset describing the structure of microbial communities and environmental factors throughout the water column in the San Pedro Channel. I use statistical approaches to investigate seasonal and long term variability of communities at several depths. I am particularly interested in applying network analysis, a technique that provides the ability  to summarize many statistical associations at once, to investigate association patterns between microbes throughout the water column.
Microbial communities are likely shaped not only by bottom up factors (nutrient availability, temperature, light, etc.) but also by top down controls such as predation (protists, infection by viruses) and direct interactions with other microorganisms. To investigate how these factors shape microbial community structure, I have applied dilution experiments, where I artificially decrease encounter rates between microorganisms in a controlled manner. By combining these experiments and long term datasets, I hope to illuminate why marine microbial communities are structured as they are.

Alma Parada

Graduate student

aparada[at]usc.edu
213-740-5759
AHF 231

Research interests:

I am interested in marine bacterial community interactions with their environment, focusing on how a community responds to changes in nutrients, competition and grazing pressure.  My current research interests are on the potential of marine bacteria to utilize alternative sources of required nutrients.  In addition, I am interested in understanding the interactions between marine bacteria and grazers. 

David Needham

Graduate student

dmneedha[at]usc.edu
213-740-5759
AHF 231

Research interests:

I'm interested how viruses structure marine microbial communities. To this end, for my current research we have undertaken multiple, extended daily time-series at both the SPOT time-series location and near Catalina Island at various times of the year and contrasting environmental conditions. I tend to characterize the microbial communitis using DNA sequencing approaches using marker genes that are almost universal for most cellular life to more specific assays which target, for example the T4-like-myoviruses and the SAR11 group. This research allows us to understand how various groups of microbial communities might be influenced by the environmental conditions and other microbial interactions, including viruses, allowing us to consider bacteria-virus dynamics within the context of widely-discussed hypotheses such as the "Kill-the-Winner" hypothesis. 

I’m interested in investigating virus community spatial biodiversity and temporal diversity using molecular markers and techniques such as TRFLP, qPCR, and DNA sequencing.
How do viruses shape or interact with the microbial community and, thus, influence ecosystem function?
Determine the extent to which the ‘viral-shunt’ may influence biogeochemical cycles in the marine environment.

Ella Sieradzki

Graduate Student

213-740-5759

AHF 231

CV_Ella_Sieradzki_Eng_email_only_1.pdf

Cathy Roney

Lab Manager

213-740-5759

AHF 231