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A Molecular Survey of Marine Cilliates in Oil-Spill Contaminated Waters

Implementing Organization

Samford University


DWH Project Funding


Known Leveraged Funding


Funding Organization

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI)

Funding Program

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative GoMRI Grant Program


Project Category


Project Actions

Chemical Aspects Research

Targeted Resources

Human and/or Institutional Capacity

Project Description

Ciliates are extremely important in aquatic ecosystems as primary consumers of bacteria. Protists are important consumers in the freshwater food web (Heath et al., 2003; Marxsen, 2006) and the ciliates are key in this web. Ciliates and other protists appear to be important in contaminated marine ecosystems (Andrew and Floodgate, 1974; Parker 1983). Given this role, a survey of marine ciliates in contaminated Gulf waters provides a unique opportunity for the discovery of basic consumers involved in the natural decontamination process.


David A. Johnson
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