The unseen life in the root zone of marsh grass and the microcosm below that is teeming with microbes producing marsh gas will be the focus of the next Coastal Studies Institute’s “Science on the Sound.”
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Professor Emeritus Dr. James Ferry of Pennsylvania State University will present “Life in the Salt Marsh Underground” next week at the institute on the East Carolina University Outer Banks Campus in Wanchese.
The presentation begins at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 15.
The public is welcome to attend at no charge the in-person lecture series held each month. The talk is to be live-streamed on the CSI YouTube channel, as well.
Ferry will highlight his research and explain the microbiological principles that also apply to other obscure gas-producing environments such as submerged coastal marine sediments, the hindgut of termites, domestic sewage, the stomachs of cows, and our own intestinal tract, organizers said.
Ferry earned his doctorate in microbiology and biochemistry from the University of Illinois in 1974. He then began his career as a microbiology professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and in 1995, moved to Penn State to accept an endowed chair in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Ferry is currently The Stanley R. Person Professor of Molecular Biology Emeritus.
A fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, Ferry has authored more than 200 scientific publications and is past editor of the Journal of Bacteriology. He has served on numerous national and international committees and currently is a member of the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine Intelligence Science and Technology Experts Group.