Phytoplankton, microscopic photosynthetic organisms floating in oceans and lakes, are responsible for half of all oxygen production on earth. Many scientists may also have been taking these single-celled organisms for granted by assuming that their large population sizes and short generation times will allow them to readily adapt to increases in ocean temperature. In a recent study, María Aranguren-Gassis and a team led by Elena Litchman questioned this widely held belief that evolution will rescue phytoplankton species from changes in climate.
Birds use odor to identify other birds. Danielle Whittakers and her colleagues have shown that if the bacteria that produce the odor is altered, it could negatively impact a bird’s ability to communicate with other birds or find a mate.
Kay Holekamp, one of the world's leading behavioral ecologists, has been awarded the 2019 Distinguished Animal Behaviorist Award from the Animal Behavior Society, in recognition of her outstanding career in animal behavior.
Richard Lenski has been awarded the 2020 D.C. White Award by the American Society for Microbiology, the world’s oldest and largest life science organization, in recognition and honor of his distinguished accomplishments, not only in interdisciplinary research but in mentoring.
Kyle Jaynes, a graduate student in the Fitzpatrick Lab, has been awarded a highly competitive Early Career grant through the National Geographic Explorers grant program. The grant supports scientists and other professionals in the early stages of their careers by funding their fieldwork expeditions.