Earth and Planetary Sciences
The broad goal of my work is to understand ecological relationships within the microbial communities in Lake Fryxell, Antarctica. Specifically, my project aims to understand how the cyanobacteria Phormidium pseudopriestleyi sustains oxygenic photosynthesis (OP) in the sulfidic portion of the water column. Previous work on the ecology of the communities has shown that organisms living around the depth of P. pseudopriestleyi primarily rely on anoxic metabolisms, but it is not known how these communities are affected by O2 produced from P. pseudopriestleyi. I am using bioinformatics and wet lab techniques to study the behavior of the organism and how this may affect the communities surrounding it in Lake Fryxell.