Grad Student DeLeo Used Genetics to Explore Oil, Dispersant Effects on Deep-Sea Corals

Responders to the Deepwater Horizon incident applied unprecedented amounts of chemical dispersant on the surface oil slick and into the deep underwater plume forming from the riser pipe. Shortly thereafter, researchers observed that a brown flocculant material containing oil and dispersant components covered some deep-sea corals near the incident site.

Grad Student Montgomery Explores How Ocean Chemistry Affects Microbes

Natural seeps are abundant in the Gulf of Mexico and help create a chemically unique habitat where microbial populations can flourish. Andy Montgomery is researching the relationship between marine microbes and ocean chemistry and how chemical shifts affect the role microorganisms play in biogeochemical cycling, a common pathway for chemicals and organic matter to move through the ocean.