Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

An online global map of coral and zooxanthellae data for climate change study is released

27.10.2011
A team of researchers from the Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB) have developed an interactive global map of corals and zooxanthellae as part of a hybrid web application titled GeoSymbio.

This application provides global-scale biological and ecosystem information on symbiotic zooxanthellae called Symbiodinium which are uni-cellular, photosynthetic dinoflagellates that live inside the cells of other marine organisms like anemones, jellyfish, and corals.

Symbiodinium are responsible for providing energy to their coral hosts which drives the deposition of calcium carbonate and results in the creation of coral reefs. The differential responses of corals and Symbiodinium types to environmental stressors have important implications for the resiliency of coral reef ecosystems to climate change. Dr. Tim McClanahan, Senior Conservation Zoologist for the Wildlife Conservation Society, stated that, "Given the pace of climate change and scientific developments around

Symbiodinium, GeoSymbio will catalyze the use of this knowledge towards increasing reef resilience and improved management decisions".

The genus Symbiodinium encompasses nine distinct genetic lineages or clades, with many sub-cladal types within each clade. The GeoSymbio application provides the genetic identification and taxonomic description of over 400 distinct Symbiodinium subclades in invertebrate hosts that have been sampled from a variety of marine habitats, thereby providing a wealth of information for symbiosis researchers in a single online location. By utilizing Google Apps, the team was able to develop this web-based tool to discover, explore, visualize, and share data in a rapid, cost-effective, and engaging manner.

GeoSymbio is the first comprehensive effort to collate and visualize Symbiodinium ecology, diversity, and geography in an online web application that is freely accessible and searchable by the public. To provide access to this information, GeoSymbio was designed to serve four basic functions: (1) geospatial visualization, (2) text-based queries, (3) knowledge summaries, and (4) downloadable data products for further analyses. The application structure draws information from a variety of digital sources and uses a suite of query and visualization tools, with the core of the application hosted remotely or "in the cloud" using Google Sites.

The application's development began in early 2011, when the HIMB researchers were tasked with compiling global data on coral-based Symbiodinium for analysis, as part of the "Tropical Coral Reefs of the Future" working group at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS). In previous years, the team had created a database with approximately 2500 records of these Symbiodinium data from sources such as GenBank (the primary repository for Symbiodinium and all other organisms' genetic sequence information) and journal articles, however, the information was only accessible within the research group. This changed in 2011 when the research team decided to create and share a low-cost, integrative web application based on the symbiont database.

Erik Franklin, one of the lead developers of the project is excited about the product that he recently presented at the Environmental Information Management 2011 Conference. He stated that: "building the capacity to examine the diversity of Symbiodinium on coral reefs has global and societal implications for tropical nations and thus, the dissemination of this information is essential. One of the major barriers to progress was that the geographic details of the Symbiodinium records were not documented well in existing databases, and our GeoSymbio app now resolves this problem and provides open data sharing". GeoSymbio provides the first and only web-based application for data discovery, visualization, and sharing of global-scale Symbiodinium research. This tool should expedite new insights into their ecology, biogeography, and evolution in the face of a changing global climate.

Carlie Wiener | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.hawaii.edu

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Dune ecosystem modelling
23.06.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

nachricht Understanding animal social networks can aid wildlife conservation
23.06.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB)

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>