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Jennifer SNEED 09 18 13

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Published on Mar 5, 2014

Dr. Jennifer Sneed is a research biologist at the Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce studying chemically mediated interactions between organisms in the marine environment. She specializes in understanding the roles that marine microbes play in the ecological interactions of other organisms.
From bodyguards to matchmakers, marine bacteria play many roles in the interactions between organisms in sea. They may be small, but they are key to the survival of marine ecosystems.

There are 1 million bacterial cells in every milliliter of seawater and even higher densities covering nearly every surface that is submerged beneath the water. These bacteria produce a wide array of biologically active compounds that affect the interactions between organisms in the ocean and are critical to the functioning of marine ecosystems. They can produce antibiotics that protect their hosts from disease or compounds that keep predators away. They can even produce compounds that tell corals where to find a home. Thanks to new technological advances, we are understanding more and more about the important roles that microbes play in marine ecological interactions. This lecture will shed light on the fascinating world of marine bacteria, the unsung heroes of the sea.

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