Navigation Links
Microbes may consume far more oil-spill waste than earlier thought
Date:10/20/2010

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Oct. 20, 2010 -- Microbes living at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico may consume far more of the gaseous waste from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill than previously thought, according to research carried out within 100 miles of the spill site.

A paper on that research, conducted before the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded six months ago today, will appear in a forthcoming issue of the journal Deep-Sea Research II. It describes the anaerobic oxidation of methane, a key component of the Gulf oil spill, by microbes living in seafloor brine pools.

"Because of the ample oil and gas reserves under the Gulf of Mexico, slow seepage is a natural part of the ecosystem," says Peter R. Girguis, associate professor of organismic and evolutionary biology at Harvard University. "Entire communities have arisen on the seafloor that depend on these seeps. Our analysis shows that within these communities, some microbes consume methane 10 to 100 times faster than we've previously realized."

Girguis is quick to note that methane is just part of what spilled from the ruptured Deepwater Horizon well for three months earlier this year, and that the rate at which methane spewed from the damaged well far exceeds the flow that microbes would ordinarily encounter in the Gulf.

Key to the work by Girguis, Harvard research scientist Scott D. Wankel, and their colleagues was the ability to use on-site mass spectrometry to obtain direct, accurate measurements of seafloor methane. It's been difficult to make such measurements because most tools don't work accurately 5,000 to 7,000 feet below the surface, where pressures can reach roughly 220 atmospheres.

Using this new technique, the scientists were able to ascertain methane concentrations in brine pools surrounding gas seeps at the bottom of the Gulf -- which were extremely high -- as well as in the water column above the pools. Combining this data with measurements of microbi
'/>"/>

Contact: Steve Bradt
steve_bradt@harvard.edu
617-496-8070
Harvard University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. New Systems Biology Awards enable detailed study of microbes
2. Biosolids microbes pose manageable risk to workers
3. Study helps clarify role of soil microbes in global warming
4. Evolution in action: Our antibodies take evolutionary leaps to fight microbes
5. Understanding extinct microbes may influence the state of modern human health
6. Our microbes, ourselves
7. Microbes fuel energy debate
8. Special issue of BMC Microbiology spotlights standardized language for describing microbes
9. Microbes in mud flats clean up oil spill chemicals
10. Antibiotics take toll on beneficial microbes in gut
11. Plant protein doorkeepers block invading microbes, study finds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/11/2014)... Recent evidence has demonstrated that transplantation of mesenchymal stem ... rat or mouse models of Alzheimer,s disease (AD) and ... cerebral ischemia. Few studies are reported on the therapeutic ... with AD and on the effect on oxidative injury ... Yufang Yan and her team, School of Life Sciences, ...
(Date:7/11/2014)... Research and Markets has announced ... - Industry Analysis Size Share Growth Trends and Forecast ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130307/600769 The rising ... need for high level security in both private and ... as username and passwords, tokens etc. are vulnerable to ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... June 27, 2014  The American Academy of ... of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Department ... research and forensic science expert members to the ... an element of the NIST,s Organization of Scientific ... the first appointments made to the new FSSB ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):International Biometrics Technology Market - Industry Analysis Size Share Growth Trends and Forecast to 2019 2Ten Members of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences Appointed to Forensic Science Standards Board (FSSB) 2Ten Members of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences Appointed to Forensic Science Standards Board (FSSB) 3
... (Sept. 27, 2010) -- Renowned international experts and ... vaccines for human papillomavirus and tuberculosis to a ... FIP Pharmaceutical Sciences World Congress (PSWC) in association ... Annual Meeting and Exposition in New Orleans, La., ...
... of African-American women in the US, the association between the ... type 2 diabetes mellitus (late onset diabetes) was studied for ... with diabetes, but the regular moderate intake of both caffeinated ... late onset diabetes significantly. This paper is ...
... Although the magnificent frigatebird may be the least likely ... the area, it turns out the Galapagos population of ... species warranting a new conservation status, according to a ... the Smithsonian,s National Museum of Natural History and the ...
Cached Biology News:Smithsonian researchers find differences between Galapagos and mainland frigatebirds 2
(Date:7/10/2014)... EvoDerma ’s NOOME Anti-Aging Motion has been ... comes with a second treatment cup to help prevent and ... cup is thinner on the edges for a softer contact ... and uneven surfaces on the face, neck and décolleté. Choose ... on areas such as the cheeks and neck, or opt ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... Ind. , July 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ ... its use of capnography for respiratory monitoring ... group of healthcare leaders in embracing state-of-the-art ... how effectively patients are breathing and can ... occurs. By measuring the amount of carbon ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... DALLAS , July 10, 2014  Kainos Capital, ... consumer brands, today announced that it has acquired the ... stake in the business. Terms of the transaction were ... loss and meal replacement business that markets ready-to-drink shakes, ... North America and in the ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... 2014 Research and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/s3bqj2/photonic ... "International Photonic Integrated Circuit (Monolithic Integration, Hybrid Integration, ... report to their offering. ... photonic integration traces its roots in the latter ... photonic integration went unexplored and unfulfilled for several ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Introducing a New Bonus Treatment Cup for EvoDerma’s NOOME Anti-Aging Motion 2Franciscan St. Anthony Health-Crown Point Underscores Patient Safety Commitment Through Expanded Use of Capnography 2Kainos Capital Acquires Slim-Fast From Unilever 2International Photonic Integrated Circuit (Monolithic Integration, Hybrid Integration, Module Integration) Market - Forecasts to 2019 2
... Surveillance System Detects ... Emerging Pattern, ... hours,on a recent Friday, 20 people arrived, one by one, for ... various,gastrointestinal symptoms, including nausea and diarrhea., A coincidence? Or the ...
... CHAPEL HILL, N.C., May 22 Pharmaceutical and biotech,companies ... Assurance (QA) functions. This benchmarking study will help R&D,Quality ... Optimizing limited QA staff resources so that they have ... Optimizing services in regards to the FDA,s Risk-Bases method ...
... investor ... conference call, ... of BioElectronics Corporation (Pink Sheets: BIEL), the,developer of ActiPatch, an ... delivers pulsed,electromagnetic therapy, today issued the following summary of its ...
Cached Biology Technology:E. coli Outbreak in New Jersey? 2E. coli Outbreak in New Jersey? 3Best Practices in Quality Assurance and Risk-Based Approach for the Biopharmaceutical Industry 2BioElectronics Corporation - Substantial International Expansion Producing Sustained Revenue Growth-Company Reaches Monthly Break Even 2BioElectronics Corporation - Substantial International Expansion Producing Sustained Revenue Growth-Company Reaches Monthly Break Even 3BioElectronics Corporation - Substantial International Expansion Producing Sustained Revenue Growth-Company Reaches Monthly Break Even 4BioElectronics Corporation - Substantial International Expansion Producing Sustained Revenue Growth-Company Reaches Monthly Break Even 5BioElectronics Corporation - Substantial International Expansion Producing Sustained Revenue Growth-Company Reaches Monthly Break Even 6BioElectronics Corporation - Substantial International Expansion Producing Sustained Revenue Growth-Company Reaches Monthly Break Even 7BioElectronics Corporation - Substantial International Expansion Producing Sustained Revenue Growth-Company Reaches Monthly Break Even 8