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Hunter-Cevera, Kristen Hibbitt Fellow, Research

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My research focuses on understanding population dynamics of the cyanobacterium Synechococcus, an important marine primary producer. Changes in cell abundance result from a complex interplay between growth responses to environmental factors, losses due to predation, underlying population diversity structure and possibly interactions with other microbes, such as heterotrophic bacteria. With high-resolution observations from a long-term time series at the Martha’s Vineyard Coastal Observatory, laboratory experiments with cultured isolates, and models of estimation of population division rate and annual dynamics, my work aims to understand how aspects of this organisms' physiology and ecology combine to produce observed cell abundance cycles, and how small scale activities and interactions can manifest into large scale patterns.

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