Back to overview

Application of Molecular Biology Methods in Modern Carbonate Microbial Environments & Implications for the Geologic record

English title Application of Molecular Biology Methods in Modern Carbonate Microbial Environments & Implications for the Geologic record
Applicant McKenzie Judith A.
Number 113590
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Geologisches Institut ETH Zürich
Institution of higher education ETH Zurich - ETHZ
Main discipline Geology
Start/End 01.10.2006 - 30.09.2008
Approved amount 156'868.00
Show all

Keywords (8)

Modern Microbial Environments; In Situ Genomics; Extrapolymetric Substances (EPS); Late Proterozoic Cap Dolostones; Stromatolites; Abu Dhabi sabkhas; Lagoa Vermehla; Brazil

Lay Summary (English)

Lay summary
The discovery of modern dolomite forming under anaerobic conditions in hypersaline lagoons along the Rio de Janeiro coast of Brazil added a microbial factor to the list of essential requirements for dolomite formation. From these promising results, we formulated the Microbial Dolomite Model, wherein halotolerant sulfate-reducing bacteria mediate the precipitation of dolomite. Combining laboratory culture experiments with field studies in modern environments and comparative analysis of ancient analogues, we have demonstrated the important role played by sulfate-reducing bacteria in the low-temperature precipitation of dolomite. We now propose to finalize this research with the exploration of the microbial ecology of Lagoa Vermelha, Brazil to better understand the coupling of biological and geochemical processes at the molecular level. We propose to conduct an in situ genomic analysis of the microbial community involved in dolomite formation in Lagoa Vermelha, as well as a more specific functional gene analysis. In addition, we will finalize our comparative microbial study of the semitropical hypersaline coastal system in Brazil with the classic sabkha environment in Abu Dhabi, U.A.E., where dolomite forms in association with evaporate minerals under extreme arid conditions.
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants


Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
127327 Using New Geochemical and Nanotechnological Approach to Study Biomineralization in Microbiolites 01.10.2009 Project funding
105149 Using a Geomicrobiological Approach to Study Specific Biogeochemical Problems Associated with Microbial Dolomite Precipitation (Part II) 01.10.2004 Project funding