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Metabolites from cultured microorganisms

We apply cutting-edge mass spectrometry to better understand metabolic dynamics of individual marine microorganisms. Our goal is to connect cellular metabolism to biogeochemical cycles by analyzing intracellular and extracellular metabolic profiles from organisms in culture. This allows us to ask questions that probe the metabolic response of organisms to different growth conditions (e.g., nutrient availability and organic substrates). Data generated in these experiments help us understand the factors that influence chemically-mediated microbial interactions and the production and transformation of dissolved organic matter. In addition, results from our culture experiments complement field studies by identifying potential target metabolites and guiding interpretation of environmental metabolite distributions.

This work is supported by grants from the Simons Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

Collaborators: Sallie (Penny) Chisholm and Rogier Braakman (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Sonya Dyhrman (Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory) and Kathleen Ruttenberg (University of Hawaii), Mary Ann Moran (University of Georgia), Cameron Thrash (University of Southern California), Eric Webb (University of Southern California).

Recent publications

Kujawinski, E. B., R. Braakman, K. Longnecker, J. W. Becker, S. W. Chisholm, K. Dooley, M. C. Kido Soule, G. J. Swarr and K. Halloran (2023). Metabolite diversity among representatives of divergent Prochlorococcus ecotypes. mSystems. DOI: 10.1128/msystems.01261-22 (link to publication)

Capovilla, G., R. Braakman, G. P. Fournier, T. Hackl, J. Schwartzman, X. Lu, A. Yelton, K. Longnecker, M. C. Kido Soule, E. Thomas, G. Swarr, A. Mongera, J. G. Payette, J. R. Waldbauer, E. B. Kujawinski, O. X. Cordero and S. W. Chisholm (2023). Chitin utilization by marine picocyanobacteria and the evolution of a planktonic lifestyle. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 120(20): e2213271120. (link to publication)

Fiore, C.L., H. Alexander, M.C. Kido Soule, E.B. Kujawinski (2021). A phosphate starvation response gene (psr1-like) is present and expressed in Micromonas pusilla and other marine algae. Aquatic Microbial Ecology. 86: 29-46 (link to publication)

Ferrer-González, F. X., B. Widner, N. R. Holderman, J. Glushka, A. S. Edison, E. B. Kujawinski and M. A. Moran (2020). Resource partitioning of phytoplankton metabolites that support bacterial heterotrophy. ISME Journal. 15: 762-773 (link to publication)