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Microbes play an essential role in governing the large geochemical cycles on our planet like the carbon, nitrogen and phosphorous cycles. Marine microbes comprise greater than 95% of all the living biomass in the sea. As Microbial Oceanographers my groups’ research interests are shaped by an interdisciplinary blend of marine microbial ecology, microbiology and ocean biogeochemistry. Specifically our research has focused on the role that marine microbes play in the cycling of elements through oceanic dissolved organic matter (DOM) and the biogeochemical significance of DOM in the marine carbon cycle. We employ a variety of oceanographic, microbiological and molecular approaches to quantify and characterize both DOM composition as well as the microbial lineages that grow on these substrates. The ultimate goal of our research is to gain a better understanding of the role of DOM in ocean biogeochemistry and how microbial community structure responds to and controls DOM quantity and quality in the World’s oceans.

 DOM Analytical Services

We provide analysis of seawater/freshwater samples using the High Temperature Combustion method on Shimadzu TOC systems.




 Lab News

August 17, 2023

This summer former Carlson Lab REU student Jaden Hansen has joined the US GO SHIP program occupation of the I05 line, sailing from Perth, Australia to Cape Town, South Africa.

April 5, 2023

An interview - Rachel Parsons 

July 8, 2020

A news reporter joins the science team for two research cruises 

February 26, 2020

Researchers connect microbes in the twilight zone of the ocean with the breakdown of tough organic molecules.

July 8, 2019

Watch graduate student Nicholas Baetge discuss his research project and give insight to the marine microbial world we study here in the Carlson Lab at UCSB.