Friday, October 2, 2015

ASM Conference

In the Spring of 2016 we are organizing an ASM conference focusing on individual-based modeling and observations in microbiology. See the link below. This should be an exciting meeting and we hope to see you there. Application deadline is November 10.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

IWA DIPCON Conference Report

I am in Berlin for the IWA Conference on Diffuse Pollution and Eutrophication. Yesterday I gave a  presentation on our Anabaena-nitrogen interaction model. At this conference I am learning a lot about water quality problems around the world. Most notably: Cyanobacteria are a growing problem everywhere. Today I had a chance to visit the Stechlin LakeLab, which is a very nice facility with a really impressive set of large-scale mesocosms (see picture). And of course they now also have Anabaena...

Friday, September 4, 2015

UT Knoxville Seminar Visit

Earlier this week I was in Knoxville visiting the Department of Microbiology at the U. of Tennessee. I gave a seminar talking about our research on bet hedging in yeast, neutral evolution of ocean bacteria and cyanobacteria-nitrogen interaction. I also had the opportunity to meet a lot of their faculty and students and learned a lot. And we had a Lake Taihu project meeting with Steve Wilhelm and students. A busy time...

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Individuality of the Plankton

Dear Colleague:

You or someone you know may be interested in presenting at this session at the AGU/ASLO/TOS Ocean Sciences Meeting 21-26 February 2016 in New Orleans.

The Individuality of the Plankton: Single-cell analysis and agent-based modeling

Fascinating advances in individual and single cell analytical techniques (e.g., flow cytometry, chemical analyses, genomics) are providing an unprecedented view into the individuality of planktonic organisms (viro-, bacterio-, phyto- and zoo-plankton). Plankton populations, which have traditionally been viewed as homogeneous collections of individuals with identical properties and behavior, are now recognized to be heterogeneous, even in environments commonly considered to be well mixed, like the open ocean. At the same time, agent-based modeling (ABM, aka individual-based modeling, IBM) technology is evolving as a powerful approach to analyze and interpret these observations. These models provide insights into the mechanisms underlying the heterogeneity (e.g., mutations, stochastic gene expression, deterministic aging, microscale patchiness) and put them into ecological context (e.g., fitness benefits of bet hedging strategies). The combination of individual and single cell analyses and ABM has the potential to transform plankton and microbial ecology across the freshwater-marine continuum and in other environments. In this session, we aim to bring together scientists to share individual and single-cell research, to take a snapshot of the state-of-the-science in this field, and to connect researchers with synergistic skills and interests.

Ferdi Hellweger, Northeastern University,
Ramunas Stepanauskas, Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences,
John Berges, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee,
Ben Twining, Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences,

Here is a link to the session and abstract submission site.
Abstract Submittal Deadline = 23 September 2015.

Please feel free to forward this announcement on to other people that may be interested.



Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Cyanobacteria bloom season is here

The Charles River and Lake Erie are in the midst of massive cyanobacteria blooms. Northeastern’s media people interviewed me on the topic. See the link below for the interview and other links for the Charles:

Monday, July 27, 2015

The tradition continues: Swimming in the Charles

This is turning into a tradition (see my blog posts from  July 28, 2014 and July 16, 2013). Last weekend, I participated in the annual swim in the Charles River. See picture below (if you have good eyesight, I am the guy waving near the edge of the swimming area). Every year I am reminded how nice of a river we have in our backyard. And its swimmable! I hope someday we can jump in whenever we want.

All you ever wanted to know about swimming in the Charles:

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Boston’s Snow Mountain

Last week, Northeastern’s media people interviewed me about the slowly melting snow pile left over from this year’s snowy winter. If it takes something like this to raise awareness about nonpoint source pollution, then so be it. You can check out the post here: