SYnergies through Merging BIOlogical and biogeoche.. (SYMBIOCORE)
SYnergies through Merging BIOlogical and biogeochemical expertise in COral REsearch
Start date: Jan 1, 2012,
End date: Dec 31, 2015
Coral reefs are among the most diverse ecosystems on the planet and provide livelihoods for hundreds of millions of people around the globe. At the basis of these ecosystems stands the symbiosis between cnidarians and dinoflagellates. How the coral holobiont with its cnidarian host, the dinoflagellate symbiont and the associated microbial community interact with each other and their environment and how this symbiosis reacts to perturbation is the focus of dynamic research worldwide.This project aims at establishing a multidisciplinary initiative to strengthen existing and establishing new collaborative connections between scientists in the field of coral research and to promote the exchange of knowledge and expertise. The proposed partners are at the forefront of coral research in their respective areas, from coral photobiology, photosynthesis regulation, the metabolism of the coral symbiosis and genomics approaches over photoacclimation patterns and coral bleaching to coral ecophysiology and biogeochemical processes.Some of the questions this team wants to address are: What are the effects of climate change on coral reef primary production, respiration and coral photo-physiology? How do photoacclimation patterns of corals influence bleaching potential? Is there more to coral bleaching than the physiological breakdown of the symbiosis? What are the ecological and biogeochemical consequences of phase shifts in coral reefs?Through the collaborative efforts within the SymbioCoRe project namely, workshops, seminars and staff exchanges to promote knowledge transfer, we will be able to contribute to a holistic understanding of these complex processes. This action will increase the skills and knowledge of all partners involved and will improve the position of the European Research Area in the global effort to develop better models of the host/symbiont relationship and to build effective approaches to better protect coral reefs and the associated ecosystems.
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