I conceived of this site and the project as a Broader Impacts activity for an NSF CAREER award (click here for details on that program). While it took longer than planned to get going, I have been really happy meeting young students and people out in the real world running demonstrations on making columns and giving talks on the importance of microbes to the biosphere. I have become more firmly convinced in the benefits of exposing K-12 students and the public to science as often as possible, if only to help prove the point that scientists are people too. If you have any comments or questions, or if you want to try anything out that you see on this site, feel free to get ahold of me:Thomas E. Hanson Associate Professor, Marine Biosciences School of Marine Science and Policy Department of Biological Sciences and Delaware Biotechnology Institute Office: (302) 831-3404 e-mail: tehanson_@_udel.edu (copy, paste, and remove the underscores) Web: click here
This site is supported by a CAREER Award to T. Hanson (MCB-0447649) and a collaborative award to T. Hanson and G. Luther (MCB-0919682).
Much of the culture data and initial work on formatting images for this site was performed by Yun-Fei Lou while he was an undergrad in the Hanson laboratory.
The tag line “That’s not stink, that’s dynamic biochemistry” is my second-hand paraphrasing of a quote attributed to Ralph Wolfe during the Woods Hole Microbial Diversity summer course (details here). Ralph is a major figure in modern american microbiology and has written an autobiography that you can read here, though you might have to access it from your local university if you want to get it for free.
About the Header Images
This is a close up of a column made out of sand from Rehoboth Beach that was made at Coast Day in 2004. This was the source for the isolates of Rhodovulum sulfidophilum described here. The full column can be seen on the home page.
This thin section transmission electron micrograph was produced by Shannon Modla of the BioImaging Center in the Delaware Biotechnology Institute from a culture of Chlorobaculum tepidum grown by my former postdoc Dr. Rachael Morgan-Kiss (her web site is here). The black parts at the edges of the cells are the chlorosomes where nearly all the bacteriochlorophyll in the cell is located.