Wednesday, August 9, 2017: 8:00 AM-11:30 AM
Portland Blrm 258, Oregon Convention Center
Neslihan Tas, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Rachel Mackelprang, California State University, Northridge
David Myrold, Oregon State University
The impact of rising global temperatures on the fate of carbon in permafrost ecosystems is a serious concern. In the Arctic, permafrost soils contain an enormous reservoir of carbon; in a warmer climate permafrost thaw is expected to lead to carbon losses through microbial decomposition. Microbes are key players in every biogeochemical cycle, including regulation of greenhouse gas fluxes between ecosystems and the atmosphere. Despite their critical role, our knowledge of microbial responses to environmental change is limited, and microbial dynamics are only beginning to be represented in ecosystem models. Recent advances in molecular biological methods, namely –omics technologies, are expanding our knowledge of microbial functions and activity in permafrost ecosystems. Combined with field observations and lab-scale manipulation experiments –omics technologies make it possible to identify the microbes and their functions that govern permafrost biogeochemical cycles critical to climate.
Today, we find ourselves at the frontier of sequencing, proteomics and metabolomics technologies where new information from DNA, RNA, proteins and metabolites is being produced at unprecedented scales. Within this wealth of information lie key insights into microbial metabolism, revealing microbial responses to a changing environment and identifying key linkages between microbial functions and ecosystem responses. In this proposed session, we bring together investigators who are using variety of –omics tools methods in combination with detailed measurements of biogeochemistry to disentangle the links between permafrost microbial communities and ecosystem feedbacks to climate. By bringing together researchers who are experts in these techniques, we hope to highlight the strengths and bottlenecks of multi-omics approaches and present how these state of the art technologies enable us to gain molecular insights and to extrapolate microbial feedbacks to climate.