What does research in the era of COVID look like at the TAV?

… a little different. Work is undoubtedly a lot slower than the before times, but we’re still getting things done as best we can! Cornell restarted research labs in mid-summer 2020 after shutting down for nearly 3 months. To de-densify our building and ensure safety of all workers, each lab has a reactivation plan, which… Read More What does research in the era of COVID look like at the TAV?

The hunt for aquatic invertebrate flaviviruses begins!

The team has started work on our new NSF-funded project looking at aquatic insect-only (aka invertebrate) flaviviruses (aiFVs)! This exciting new direction seeks to understand how environmental variation drives viral replication within sea cucumber tissues. As part of this new endeavor we are trying to find out how widespread and how diverse these aiFVs are… Read More The hunt for aquatic invertebrate flaviviruses begins!

So how do boundary layer processes scale to the geographic extent of SSWD in 2013-2014? And other future ideas.

It’s been a very busy start to 2021… notwithstanding a global pandemic, an administrative pivot, and the star of teaching, the team’s also been busy since the publication of our work on sea star wasting disease and the boundary layer oxygen diffusion limitation hypothesis. For the last few weeks, news media outlets from AAAS/Sciencemag through… Read More So how do boundary layer processes scale to the geographic extent of SSWD in 2013-2014? And other future ideas.

New Project – Aquatic Flaviviruses and Sea Cucumbers!

I’m excited to announce that the lab has been awarded funding from NSF to study the interaction between oceanographic conditions, sea cucumbers, and a newly-discovered group of enveloped single-stranded RNA viruses (the aquatic invertebrate-only Flaviviruses or aiFVs). We know very little about the ecology of this group of viruses, which are distant relatives of important… Read More New Project – Aquatic Flaviviruses and Sea Cucumbers!

A non-infectious etiology for Sea Star Wasting Disease

In Ishiro Honda’s 1954 “Godzilla”, the world is menaced by a towering, semi-aquatic kaiju who wreaks havoc on coastal cities and villages. The monster seems impossible to stop, repelling high-powered military artillery and stomping on tanks. However, Emiko Yamane (played by Momoko Kochi) stumbles on a new weapon which seems to arrest all life in… Read More A non-infectious etiology for Sea Star Wasting Disease

Explanation of Boundary Layer Oxygen Diffusion Limitation Hypothesis for Sea Star Wasting

Ian Hewson, Department of Microbiology, Cornell University **I was asked recently to put together a non-oceanographer/scientist explanation of sea star wasting and our recent work on boundary layer oxygen diffusion limitation, which is below** Seven years into our investigation of sea star wasting, we have learned much about starfish, their biology, and how they interact… Read More Explanation of Boundary Layer Oxygen Diffusion Limitation Hypothesis for Sea Star Wasting

New Preprint on Sea Star Wasting – It’s all about the Boundary Layer

After many years of concerted investigation, the team and some colleagues now have multiple, convergent lines of evidence to suggest that sea star wasting disease is a sequela of organic matter remineralization (and subsequent hypoxic conditions) in the boundary layer overlying respiratory surfaces. We see this reflected in microbiome trends during wasting (copiotrophs –> anaerobes).… Read More New Preprint on Sea Star Wasting – It’s all about the Boundary Layer

Mini-Review on Marine Coronaviruses

Gideon Mordecai (UBC) and I have recently published a mini-review on marine coronaviruses in the journal Frontiers in Microbiology. While not much is known about the true diversity of coronaviruses in marine ecosystems (because they are hugely under-sampled), we can learn about how they may behave in marine habitats through other enveloped, ssRNA viruses.