Congrats, Nastassia!!! New PeerJ paper.

Nastassia, thank you for your tremendous effort in driving this project forward.

It’s great to be able to include two Aquatic Chemical Ecology REU students, Gabbi Chebli and Claire Garfield, as coauthors.  Gabbi and Claire, this wouldn’t have been possible without you.

Patin NV, Brown E, Chebli G, Garfield C, Kubanek J, Stewart FJ. 2020. Microbial and chemical dynamics of a toxic dinoflagellate bloom. PeerJ. In press.

Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) exert considerable ecological and economic damage and are becoming increasingly frequent worldwide. However, the biological factors underlying HABs remain uncertain. Relationships between algae and bacteria may contribute to bloom formation, strength, and duration. We investigated the microbial communities and metabolomes associated with a HAB of the toxic dinoflagellate Karenia brevis off the west coast of Florida in June 2018. Microbial communities and intracellular metabolite pools differed based on both bacterial lifestyle and bloom level, suggesting a complex role for blooms in reshaping microbial processes. Network analysis identified K. brevis as an ecological hub in the planktonic ecosystem, with significant connections to diverse microbial taxa. These included four flavobacteria and one sequence variant unidentified past the domain level, suggesting uncharacterized diversity in phytoplankton-associated microbial communities. Additionally, intracellular metabolomic analyses associated high K. brevis levels with higher levels of aromatic compounds and lipids. These findings reveal water column microbial and chemical characteristics with potentially important implications for understanding HAB onset and duration.

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