SAR11

Global warming, a dead zone and mysterious bacteria

Researchers Liz Robertson from the University of Southern Denmark and Josh Manger from the University of California, San Diego, ready a sample collector off Mexico's Pacific coast. They’re part of a research team that discovered bacteria making oxygen minimum zones in the ocean even deader by sucking up all life-giving nitrogen molecules. (Photo: Heather Olins)

In ocean expanses where oxygen has vanished, newly discovered bacteria are diminishing additional life molecules. They help make virtual dead zones even deader. Now, a team led by the Georgia Institute of Technology has discovered members of a highly prolific bacteria group known as SAR11 living in the world’s largest oxygen minimum zone. The team has produced unambiguous evidence that the bacteria play a major role in denitrification.

Monday, August 8, 2016
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