Role of Microbial Motility for Degradation of Dispersed Oil

Project Overview

Implementing Organization
University of Houston

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 Location: Multiple States

Funding Source: BP
Controlling Document: GOMRI Master Research Agreement
Year Awarded: 2016

Project Details

Project Category

Project Actions

Chemical Aspects Research

Targeted Resources

Human and / or Institutional Capacity Petroleum Microbial Communities

Project Description

Our objective is to clarify the effects of oil-water interfaces on marine bacteria motility in the initial stage of biodegradation, as microbes move towards and attach to dispersed oil. The underlying idea driving the proposed work is that bacterial chemotaxis will enhance the rate of biodegradation and can be modulated by physical factors in the environment and by properties of oil-water interfaces. The four scientific questions to be addressed through this proposal are: 1) How does bacterial chemotaxis affect the rate at which microbes degrade oil? 2) How do the elevated pressures found in the ocean and in the Deepwater Horizon spill modify the motility, chemotaxis, and hydrocarbon utilization? 3) How do dispersants alter microbial motility mechanisms and adhesion to oil-water interfaces during biodegradation? 4) How do viscoelastic interfaces and flows alter microbial motility?

Project Contact

Project Partners


Affiliated Institutions

Purdue University, University of California San Diego, University of Virginia

Project ID: 512
Project Name: Role of Microbial Motility for Degradation of Dispersed Oil
SourceUID: 285
Latitude: 29.723084
Longitude: -95.341402
Country: United States of America
State or Province: CA, IN, TX, VA
County: Unknown Multiple Counties,
Project Category: Science
Project Action: Chemical Aspects Research
Additional Project Action(s):
Additional Project Action(s):
Targeted Resource(s): Human and/or Institutional Capacity
Targeted Resource(s): Petroleum
Targeted Resource(s): Microbial Communities
Anticipated Project Completion Year: 2018
Implementing Organization: University of Houston
Implementing Organization Type: Academic
Point of Contact – Name: Jacinta C. Conrad
Point of Contact – Phone:
Point of Contact – Email: None
Other Partners: None
Affiliated Institutions: Purdue University, University of California San Diego, University of Virginia
Project Comments: None
Acres Acquired: 0
Close Year: 0
Close Month: 0
Close day: 0
Purchase Type: None
Landowner: None
Landowner Type: None
Purpose: None
Public Access: None
Easement Holder Name : None
Easement Holder Type: None
Secondary Easement Holder 1: None
Secondary Easement Holder 2: None
Duration: None
Term: 0
Land Restoration Acreage: 0
Aquatic Restoration Acreage: 0
Restoration Mileage: 0
Restoration Feet: 0
Additional Acreage: None
Total Dollar Amount (from all funders): 1818340
DWH Funder: Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI)
DWH Funder Type: Private
DWH Funding Program: Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) Grant Program
DWH Dollar Amount : 1818340
DWH Source: BP
Fund Origin: Voluntary Agreement
Controlling Documents: GOMRI Master Research Agreement
Award Year: 2016
Award Month: 1
Total Amount Leveraged: 0