Project Information
Application for an Early-concept Grant for Exploratory Reasearch (EAGER) to develop a Pathway/Genome Database (PGDB) for the Southern Ocean Haptophyte Phaeocystis Antarctica.
Start Date:
End Date:
Phaeocystis antarctica is capable of forming blooms that are denser and more extensive than any other member of the Southern Ocean phytoplankton community. The factors that enable P Antarctica to dominate its competitors are not clear but are likely related to its colonial lifestyle. The goal of the project is to map all the reactions in metabolic pathways that are key to defining the ecological niche of Phaeocystis antarctica by developing a Pathway/Genome Database (PGDB) using Pathway Tools software. The investigators will assign proteins and enzymes to key pathways in P. Antarctica, continually improve and edit the database as the full Phaeocystis genome comes online, and host the database on the BioCyc webpage. The end product will be the first database for a eukaryotic phytoplankton genome where researchers can query extant metabolic pathways and place new proteins and enzymes of interest within metabolic networks. The risk is that a substantial percentage of catalytic enzymes may belong to pathways that are poorly characterized. The science impact is to link genomes to metabolic potential in the context of Phaeocystis life history but also in comparison to other organisms across the tree of life. The education and outreach includes work with a high school teacher and intern and curriculum development.
Person Role
Arrigo, Kevin Investigator
Antarctic Organisms and Ecosystems Award # 1063592
AMD - DIF Record(s)
Data Management Plan
None in the Database
Product Level:
0 (raw data)
  1. Arrigo, K. R., van Dijken, G. L., & Strong, A. L. (2015). Environmental controls of marine productivity hot spots around Antarctica. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 120(8), 5545–5565. (doi:10.1002/2015jc010888)
  2. Joy‐Warren, H. L., Dijken, G. L., Alderkamp, A., Leventer, A., Lewis, K. M., Selz, V., … Arrigo, K. R. (2019). Light Is the Primary Driver of Early Season Phytoplankton Production Along the Western Antarctic Peninsula. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 124(11), 7375–7399. (doi:10.1029/2019jc015295)
  3. Arrigo, K. R., van Dijken, G. L., Alderkamp, A., Erickson, Z. K., Lewis, K. M., Lowry, K. E., … van de Poll, W. (2017). Early Spring Phytoplankton Dynamics in the Western Antarctic Peninsula. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 122(12), 9350–9369. (doi:10.1002/2017jc013281)
  4. Gerringa, L. J. A., Laan, P., van Dijken, G. L., van Haren, H., De Baar, H. J. W., Arrigo, K. R., & Alderkamp, A.-C. (2015). Sources of iron in the Ross Sea Polynya in early summer. Marine Chemistry, 177, 447–459. (doi:10.1016/j.marchem.2015.06.002)
Platforms and Instruments

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