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Growth and death in bacterial communities

May 21, 2019

The coastal waters of the Red Sea have enough resources to support bacterial growth, but predation by protistan grazers limits the population, according to new research from KAUST. Since bacteria are vital players in the marine food web, determining the factors that affect their growth and abundance is critical to understanding marine ecosystems and how they will respond to climate change.

#Discovery

Mangrove forests trap floating litter

May 13, 2019

Mangrove forests on the coasts of Saudi Arabia act as litter traps, accumulating plastic debris from the marine environment, according to new research from KAUST. The study offers an explanation for the fate of missing marine plastic litter and highlights the threat it poses to coastal ecosystems.

#Discovery

Bacterial mix helps predict future change

Apr 15, 2019

A controlled, laboratory approach, along with computer simulations, has helped KAUST researchers to show that bacterial communities can homogenously disperse within aquatic ecosystems even with slow flowing water and the persistence of their preferred, localized conditions.

#Discovery

Global study shows exotic species are a complex threat

Apr 08, 2019

When species are introduced by humans into marine habitats, they can disrupt their new environment, according to a study at KAUST, which also identified key species for conservation efforts to focus on.

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Speargrass recruit sandy microbes for help

Mar 13, 2019

Sticky, sandy sheaths surrounding the roots of three speargrass species growing in the Namib Desert recruit whatever growth-promoting bacteria are available in the surrounding sand. This is contrary to the more specialized root sheaths of plants growing in resource-rich soils, where different plant species recruit different types of bacteria.

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The fiddlers influencing mangrove ecosystems

Mar 11, 2019

The types of bacteria present in and around mangrove fiddler crab burrows in three different geographic locations were compared by KAUST researchers. They found that the crabs' burrowing activity changed the sediment in a way that attracted different types of bacteria across the three locations: however, the bacteria performed similar functions, such as aerobic respiration, and ecological services, such as turnover of organic matter.

#Discovery