Tag Archives: coral

Vampires, Bitcoins, & Coral Cities: Latest on VICE (February 7) – Video

Posted: February 11, 2015 at 3:48 pm



Vampires, Bitcoins, Coral Cities: Latest on VICE (February 7)
Vampires in Louisiana, colorful coral cities, bitcoin mines, and reversing female genital mutilation. This is the latest on VICE. VICE: The Real 'True Blood'? – http://bit.ly/16Tx1WG THE…

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Vampires, Bitcoins, & Coral Cities: Latest on VICE (February 7) – Video

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2015 DOE JGI's science portfolio delves deeper into the Earth's data mine

Posted: September 30, 2014 at 1:43 am

PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:

29-Sep-2014

Contact: David Gilbert degilbert@lbl.gov DOE/Joint Genome Institute @doe_jgi

The U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI), a DOE Office of Science user facility, has announced that 32 new projects have been selected for the 2015 Community Science Program (CSP). From sampling Antarctic lakes to Caribbean waters, and from plant root micro-ecosystems, to the subsurface underneath the water table in forested watersheds, the CSP 2015 projects portfolio highlights diverse environments where DOE mission-relevant science can be extracted.

“These projects catalyze JGI’s strategic shift in emphasis from solving an organism’s genome sequence to enabling an understanding of what this information enables organisms to do,” said Jim Bristow, DOE JGI Science Deputy who oversees the CSP. “To accomplish this, the projects selected combine DNA sequencing with large-scale experimental and computational capabilities, and in some cases include JGI’s new capability to write DNA in addition to reading it. These projects will expand research communities, and help to meet the DOE JGI imperative to translate sequence to function and ultimately into solutions for major energy and environmental problems.”

The CSP 2015 projects were selected by an external review panel from 76 full proposals received that resulted from 85 letters of intent submitted. The total allocation for the CSP 2015 portfolio is expected to exceed 60 trillion bases (terabases or Tb)or the equivalent of 20,000 human genomes of plant, fungal and microbial genome sequences. The full list of projects may be found at http://jgi.doe.gov/our-projects/csp-plans/fy-2015-csp-plans/. The DOE JGI Community Science Program also accepts proposals for smaller-scale microbial, resequencing and DNA synthesis projects and reviews them twice a year. The CSP advances projects that harness DOE JGI’s capability in massive-scale DNA sequencing, analysis and synthesis in support of the DOE missions in alternative energy, global carbon cycling, and biogeochemistry.

Among the CSP 2015 projects selected is one from Regina Lamendella of Juniata College, who will investigate how microbial communities in Marcellus shale, the country’s largest shale gas field, respond to hydraulic fracturing and natural gas extraction. For example, as fracking uses chemicals, researchers are interested in how the microbial communities can break down environmental contaminants, and how they respond to the release of methane during oil extraction operations.

Some 1,500 miles south from those gas extraction sites, Monica Medina-Munoz of Penn State University will study the effect of thermal stress on the Caribbean coral Orbicella faveolata and the metabolic contribution of its coral host Symbiodinium. The calcium carbonate in coral reefs acts as carbon sinks, but reef health depends on microbial communities. If the photosynthetic symbionts are removed from the coral host, for example, the corals can die and calcification rates decrease. Understanding how to maintain stability in the coral-microbiome community can provide information on the coral’s contribution to the global ocean carbon cycle.

Longtime DOE JGI collaborator Jill Banfield of the University of California (UC), Berkeley is profiling the diversity of microbial communities found in the subsurface from the Rifle aquifer adjacent to the Colorado River. The subsurface is a massive, yet poorly understood, repository of organic carbon as well as greenhouse gases. Another research question, based on having the microbial populations close to both the water table and the river, is how they impact carbon, nitrogen and sulfur cycles. Her project is part of the first coordinated attempt to quantify the metabolic potential of an entire subsurface ecosystem under the aegis of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Subsurface Biogeochemistry Scientific Focus Area.

Banfield also successfully competed for a second CSP project to characterize the tree-root microbial interactions that occur below the soil mantle in the unsaturated zone or vadose zone, which extends into unweathered bedrock. The project’s goal is to understand how microbial communities this deep underground influence tree-based carbon fixation in forested watersheds by the Eel River in northwestern California.

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DNA testing to help save corals

Posted: May 26, 2014 at 7:44 am

“We are seriously tackling conservation of coral reefs in Okinawa,” said Dr. Chuya Shinzato of the OIST Marine Genomics Unit. Coral reefs face various extinction risks. To avert coral demise, Shinzato is providing his expertise to the Coral Reef Preservation and Restoration Project spearheaded by the Okinawa Prefectural Government. In a paper published in Frontiers in Marine Science, Shinzato and colleagues reported the establishment of DNA markers that might be applicable to all species of the Acropora reef-building coral, giving accurate identification to individual corals. The technique, similar to DNA profiling in humans, enables scientists to study genetic diversity and connectivity among the Acropora coral populations, thus finding clues to help with the conservation of coral reef ecosystems in waters around Okinawa and the world.

Coral reefs occupy only one percent of the ocean floor, but they are home to as much as a quarter of all described marine species in the world. Despite their importance, corals face a range of grave risks today, from bleaching triggered by increasing seawater temperatures, to sediment loads caused by terrestrial erosion from land development, to predation by crown-of-thorns starfish. In order to improve coral conservation and restoration efforts, it is important to increase diversity so that all coral in one area is not susceptible to the same destructive force. Diversity also helps to build reefs more robust to environmental changes than those composed of a few individual corals.

In this study, Shinzato and his team used the Acropora coral, the most common coral genera in the Indo-Pacific. They have 113 species that inhabit waters from the Red Sea through the Indian and Pacific Oceans to the Caribbean. There are four distinct groups of the Acropora coral, with a major evolutionary split occurring around 6.6 million years ago. The researchers first looked at the sequenced genome of Acropora digitifera andAcropora tenius, which belong to the two most distantly related groups. The team then located multiple repeated DNA sequences, called microsatellites in their respective genome. The number of repeats that appear differs between individual corals.

In order to detect microsatellites commonly present in the two Acroporaspecies used in the study, the researchers used a process called polymerase chain reaction (PCR), using a pair of flanking DNA sequences that extend to either side of the microsatellite region. The distance between these neighboring sequences, called primers, differs between each individual coral due to the number of times the microsatellites are repeated, providing valuable information on the relatedness of different individuals. However, the development of microsatellite DNA markers remains time consuming, expensive, and labor intensive since the markers are often species specific. Despite these drawbacks, Shinzato and colleagues developed 14 microsatellite DNA markers found in two of the most diverse Acroporaspecies. Since the 14 markers have been conserved during their evolution dating back to 6.6 million years ago, the researchers assert that these markers should also be present in all of the other 111 species of Acropora corals. The study spares scientists the time and labor of creating markers for the other 111 species and serves as a powerful research tool to identify individual corals, thus contributing to population genetics studies and conservation of Acropora corals.

The work has direct implications for Okinawa. Since the Acropora coral is the most common coral in the area, the study can be applied to most of Okinawa’s coral reefs. Already, the Okinawa Prefectural Government has taken steps to preserve and regenerate corals in nearby waters by employing this technology to increase genetic diversity in coral plantation.

“I truly hope the technique we have developed will contribute to coral reef transplantation and restoration,” said Shinzato. The markers established by the OIST team can be applied to all Acropora corals in the world. The study may pave a way for global restoration of the rich coral reef ecosystems that are suffering.

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The above story is based on materials provided by Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology – OIST. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

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DNA testing to help save corals

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Ocala HR department requests additional funding

Posted: February 6, 2014 at 6:43 am

Published: Wednesday, February 5, 2014 at 6:34 p.m. Last Modified: Wednesday, February 5, 2014 at 6:34 p.m.

OCALA — The city of Ocala’s Human Resources Department, faced with increasing union issues, used up its entire $40,000 legal fees budget in the first quarter of the year and has requested an additional $144,000 from general fund reserves to cover attorneys fees that arise between now and Sept. 30, the end of the city’s fiscal year.

“We have a number of arbitrations and grievances,” Sandra Wilson, the city’s chief of staff for support services, told the City Council.

The council voted 4-0 Tuesday to approve the increase. Councilman James Hilty was absent.

The council also approved renewing the contract with Wayne Helsby of Allen, Norton & Blue, P.A., the Coral Gables labor attorney who has represented the city’s collective bargaining and other employment law interests since 1997.

“He is the lead negotiator,” Wilson said about Helsby.

The city bargains with the police, fire and general employees’ unions.

The general employees, the latest group to unionize, are represented by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1205. The employees voted 203 to 97 in August to unionize after the City Council, faced with rising pension liabilities, reduced the general employees’ pension benefits.

The City Council, at its strategic planning meeting in January, set as its top priority for this year the reduction of police and fire pension benefits.

Jared Sorensen, the city’s director of human resources and risk management, wrote in an email that several items depleted his legal budget. He wrote that when the budget was being prepared, it was not certain the general employees would vote to join the IBEW. Now that they have, he must bargain and address grievances and arbitrations with three unions.

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Cape council debates Second Amendment resolution

Posted: February 4, 2014 at 7:44 am

CAPE CORAL, FL –

A debate over preserving the right to bear arms ended Monday night in the Cape Coral council chambers. The issue was brought forth and defeated last week when it was first presented to city leaders. This time leaders voted against reconsidering the resolution.

Last week, the majority of council felt the issue was more about bashing the current administration and less about defending the Second Amendment.

“Tonight is the night” said Cape Coral Councilmember Rana Erbrick. “We’re going to see if public pressure has forced one of the six members who voted no to bring it forward for consideration.”

The issue was a resolution reaffirming the city’s stance on the Second Amendment. The controversial resolution was introduced during last week’s council meeting by its youngest member, Richard Leon.

“I’m more concerned about the American people and the American citizens, and Cape Coral citizens,” Leon said

Then the measure was voted down 6 to 2. Monday the vote was 5 to 3.

Councilmember Rick Williams was one member who voted against it last week.

“It’s extremely partisan, it’s extremely political and it’s not something we should be tying up this in ordinate amount of time that we’re tying up with right now,” Williams said.

But Second Amendment supporters like Matthew Worley had hoped to change the council’s mind Monday night.

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Cape council debates Second Amendment resolution

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Cape council won't consider 2nd Amendment resolution

Posted: at 7:44 am

CAPE CORAL, FL –

A debate over preserving the right to bear arms ended Monday night in the Cape Coral council chambers. The issue was brought forth and defeated last week when it was first presented to city leaders. This time leaders voted against reconsidering the resolution.

Last week, the majority of council felt the issue was more about bashing the current administration and less about defending the Second Amendment.

“Tonight is the night” said Cape Coral Councilmember Rana Erbrick. “We’re going to see if public pressure has forced one of the six members who voted no to bring it forward for consideration.”

The issue was a resolution reaffirming the city’s stance on the Second Amendment. The controversial resolution was introduced during last week’s council meeting by its youngest member, Richard Leon.

“I’m more concerned about the American people and the American citizens, and Cape Coral citizens,” Leon said

Then the measure was voted down 6 to 2. Monday the vote was 5 to 3.

Councilmember Rick Williams was one member who voted against it last week.

“It’s extremely partisan, it’s extremely political and it’s not something we should be tying up this in ordinate amount of time that we’re tying up with right now,” Williams said.

But Second Amendment supporters like Matthew Worley had hoped to change the council’s mind Monday night.

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DNA – coffee house escuela bellas artes (Ensamble Coral La – Video

Posted: May 16, 2013 at 3:43 am



DNA – coffee house escuela bellas artes (Ensamble Coral La
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