EEB events: Thursday seminar: Microbial seed banks: ecological and evolutionary implications of dormancy: Dr. Jay Lennon, Indiana University
Jay T. Lennon, Associate Professor, Indiana University, Department of Biology
Dormancy is a bet-hedging strategy used by a wide range of taxa, including microorganisms. It refers to an organism’s ability to enter a reversible state of low metabolic activity when faced with unfavorable environmental conditions, including energy limitation. Dormant microorganisms generate a seed bank, which comprises individuals that are capable of being resuscitated following environmental change. Thus, microbial dormancy may help maintain biodiversity and influence the stability of ecosystem processes.
After introducing a theoretical framework for microbial seed banks, I will present results from a meta-analysis on the prevalence of dormancy in a variety of ecosystems, including oceans, lakes, soils, and the human gut. In addition, I will discuss results demonstrating the importance of dormancy for the maintenance of microbial diversity and ecosystem functioning. Finally, I will present ongoing research which focuses on the mechanisms of bacterial resuscitation, and the implications of these processes under global climate change scenarios.
Coffee and cookies will be served at 4 p.m.
Location: 1200 Chemistry