Moran, a professor in UGA's marine sciences department, studies bacteria that are critical to the marine food web and the sulfur cycle of the ocean. Her research addresses issues ranging from marine biodiversity to global climate control.
Moran is the first UGA scientist to receive an award from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, which was started in 2000 by Gordon Moore, co-founder of Intel, and his wife, Betty. The award is part of the foundation's Marine Microbiology initiative aimed at attaining new knowledge about microbial communities in the world's oceans.
"Dr. Moran's work holds great promise for expanding our understanding of the ecology and diversity of coastal bacteria, and how these bacteria affect the health of the oceans as well as other natural processes," said UGA President Michael F. Adams. "We are very grateful to the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation for recognizing the importance of her research and supporting it so generously."
Moran and her colleagues use the genomes of cultured marine bacterioplankton to investigate how bacteria influence sulfur emissions, carbon storage and energy acquisition in marine surface waters and coastal marshes.
The bacteria also influence the flow of sulfur-containing gases between the ocean and atmosphere. This flow provides a key feedback loop in theories of global climate regulation for which biotic processes are central elements.
The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation launched its 10-year Marine Microbiology initiative last April with the goal of attaining new knowledge regarding the composition, function and ecological role of microbial commu
Contact: Mary Ann Moran
University of Georgia