From Communities to Single Cells – Sulfate-reducing Microorganisms in Aarhus Bay

PhD defence, Thursday 14 December 2017, Lara M. Jochum.

2017.12.14 | Trine Berndt Turtiainen Scheelke

Lara M. Jochum

During her studies, Lara M. Jochum investigated the diversity and ecology of sulfate-reducing microorganisms in Aarhus Bay sediments. Sulfate-reducing microorganisms couple the global sulfur and carbon cycles closely together by the process of sulfate reduction. Her work involved developing and applying advanced molecular and bioinformatics techniques. This has allowed her to map the distribution and community composition of SRM in the sediment, and infer their metabolic potential by single cell genomics. One of her key discoveries is that the SRM community in the subsurface sediment assembles by selective survival of surface community members. Also, she identified the main site of SRM community assembly as the transition zone from bioturbated surface sediment to the unmixed sediment below, which is depleted in reactive organic matter. Lara M. Jochum furthermore delineated the metabolic potential of a subgroup of deltaproteobacteria related to the SRM Desulfatiglans and which occur in high abundance in subsurface sediments. The PhD study thus represents a significant contribution to our understanding of the distribution and ecophysiology of SRM in marine sediments.

The PhD degree was completed at the Center for Geomicrobiology, Science and Technology, Aarhus University.

This résumé was prepared by the PhD student.

Time: Thursday 14 December 2017 at 13.00
Place: 1532-116 Auditorium G1, Aarhus University
Title of dissertation: Distribution, community assembly and metabolic potential of sulfate-reducing microorganisms in marine sediments
Contact information: Lara M. Jochum, e-mail:, tel.: +45 61229822
Members of the assessment committee:
Professor Gerard Muyzer, Faculty of Science, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Professor Alexander H. Treusch, Department of Biology, University of Southern Denmark, Denmark
Professor Nils Risgaard-Petersen (chair), Department of Microbiology, Aarhus University
Main supervisor:
Professor Andreas Schramm, Center for Geomicrobiology, Section for Microbiology, Aarhus University
Associate Professor Kasper U. Kjeldsen, Center for Geomicrobiology, Section for Microbiology, Aarhus University
Language: The PhD dissertation will be defended in English

The defence is public.
The dissertation is available for reading at the Graduate School of Science and Technology/GSST,
Ny Munkegade 120, building 1520, rooms 128-134, 8000 Aarhus C.

PhD defence
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Revised 22.03.2018