IODP Microbiology Through Massively Parallel DNA Sequencing

Project: Research project

Project Details


This program seeks to investigate the application of newly available, massively parallel DNA sequencing technology for the pursuit of environmental microbiology objectives, with particular attention to high-priority deep biosphere studies under IODP. Using 5 samples from Site 1229 of ODP Leg 201 (Peruvian deep biosphere drilling), the researchers will conduct a proof-of-concept study to sequence DNA focusing on material that is considered DNA-poor by conventional measures. They will first produce an estimated 300,000 sequences of 100 base pairs (~30 Mb) for each of the five samples and then map these metagenomes. During a second phase of the study, they will conduct a focused study either on an important horizon at Site 1229 or on samples from another hole and produce ~90 Mb of additional genomic DNA data in 3 or 4 rounds of sequencing. The primary broader impact of this research is its potential to revolutionize microbial ecology, particularly for difficult-to-study samples of the deep marine biosphere. In addition, the research will support a graduate student and strengthen the interdisciplinary collaboration between a geomicrobiologist and a microbial ecologist.

Effective start/end date2/15/061/31/10


  • National Science Foundation: $254,883.00


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