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Contact Information:
Department of
Biological Sciences
120 Flagg Road,
University of Rhode Island
Kingston, RI 02881 - 0816.
Phone: (401) 874-2373.
Fax: (401) 874-2065.
Brad Seibel
Job Title: Associate Professor of Biological Sciences (Physiology in extreme environments)
Address: CBLS 187,
Phone: (401) 874-7997
  • B.A. (Biology) 1992, U. California, Santa Barbara
  • Ph.D. (Biology) 1998, U. California, Santa Barbara
Research Interests

As a comparative animal physiologist, I study how animals work in extreme environments. How are animals specialized to extremely cold temperatures in polar environments? How do animals cope with low oxygen in some parts of the deep sea? Will existing physiological abilities be sufficient to deal with changing climate and ocean acidification? My lab addresses these questions by comparing physiological performance in diverse animals from widely varying environments. Specifically we measure rates of oxygen consumption and ammonia excretion, activities of key metabolic enzymes, blood oxygen binding ability, osmolyte concentrations, and acid-base balance under controlled conditions in the laboratory, often on board research ships.

Using physiological and biochemical tools, I’m also able to address questions in biological oceanography. For example, metabolic rate measurements in oceanic animals are used to calculate the contribution of such animals to the flux of carbon from the atmosphere to the deep sea.

Our travels to remote parts of the world also provide opportunities to observe species seldom, if ever, seen by humans. We’ve made discoveries of species new to science and have observed new behaviors by other species.

Lab website:

  1. Rosenthal, J. C., Seibel, B.A, Dymowska, A., and F. Bezanilla. 2009. Trade-off between aerobic capacity and locomotory activity in an Antarctic pteropod. Proceedings National Academy Sciences. Published online before print March 23, 2009.
  2. Rosa, R., and Seibel, B. A. 2008. Synergistic effect of climate-related variables suggests future physiological impairment in a top oceanic predator. Proceedings National Academy Sciences. 52. 20776-20780.
  3. Seibel, B. A. 2007. On the depth and scale of metabolic rate variation: scaling of oxygen consumption and enzymatic activity in the Class Cephalopoda. J. Exp. Biol. 210: 1-11.
  4. Seibel, B. A. and Drazen, J. C. 2007. The rates of metabolism in marine animals: environmental constraints, ecological demands and energetic opportunities. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. Lond. B. 362: 2061-2078.
  5. Seibel, B. A., Robison, B. H., Haddock, S. D. H. 2005. Post-spawning egg-care by a squid. Nature 438: 929.
  6. Seibel, B. A. and V. J. Fabry. 2003. Marine Biotic Response to Elevated Carbon Dioxide. Advances in Applied Biodiversity Science 4. 59-67.
  7. Seibel, B. A. and P. J. Walsh. 2002. Trimethylamine oxide accumulation in marine animals: relation to acylglycerol storage? Journal of Experimental Biology. 205(3): 297-306
  8. Seibel, B. A. and P. J. Walsh. 2001. Potential impacts of CO2 injection on deep-sea biota. Science. 294(5541): 319-320
  9. Childress, J. J. and B. A. Seibel. 1998. Life at stable low oxygen: Adaptations of animals to oceanic oxygen minimum layers. Journal of Experimental Biology. 201: 1223-1232
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