Associate Professor of Biological Sciences (Physiology in extreme environments)
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: http://www.uri.edu/cels/bio/seibel/
University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI 02881, USA 1-401-874-1000
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