Ocean Health aims to close knowledge gaps in marine science
Research into various aspects of ocean health, a comprehensive understanding of the consequences for the marine ecosystem and the challenge of creating an appropriate regulatory framework for the use of resources vital to humanity are among the future topics in marine sciences with high social relevance.
Interdisciplinary research into Ocean Health
Scientists from the Kiel Marine Science (KMS) priority research area combine their activities in the Ocean Health research initiative in an interdisciplinary manner from microbiological, ecological, geological, oceanographic, informational, economic, medical-ethical and social perspectives.
Ocean Health studies the health of marine organisms, but also of entire marine ecosystems, especially under the effects of climate change: from molecular mechanisms of bacteria-bacteria interactions, the healthy composition of the microbiomes of marine animals, to physiological adaptability and global distribution patterns of toxic algal blooms, the influence of climate change on emerging diseases in the sea is being investigated. Different approaches show that stress, for example in the form of underwater noise, acidification or temperature extremes, can limit the resilience of marine organisms to diseases and also influence the biodiversity of marine ecosystems.
Impact of marine diseases on people and society
In the Ocean Health research initiative, the potential impacts of marine diseases on society also plays an essential role. In the research project "Beyond One Ocean Health(B1OH)" led by the Center for Ocean and Society (CeOS), a KMS platform for transdisciplinary research, the connections between health and disease in the ocean in marine plants and animals as well as human health are being explored. The aim is to develop a holistic view of an intact state of the ocean, especially in an international context. B1OH contributes to the UN Ocean Decade goals of "healthy and resilient ocean", "predictable ocean" and "inspiring ocean" and is part of the Digital Twins of the Ocean (DITTO) decade project led by GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel. CeOS researchers are also developing management options to preserve the biodiversity of macroalgal marine forests in the Mediterranean Sea. The aim is to work with stakeholders to create effective tools for sustainable sea urchin fisheries and marine forest conservation in the Mediterranean.
New need for research due to the increasing impact of offshore wind farms on seabirds
The connection between healthy marine ecosystems and human use of the seas is being researched at the Research and Technology Centre (FTZ) West Coast in Büsum using the example of offshore wind farms: the migration routes of seabirds can be affected by large fields of wind turbines and the birds can also be additionally weakened by ingesting microplastics. The effect of these factors on the spread of avian influenza, for example, has not yet been studied. In cooperation with the Institute for Terrestrial and Aquatic Wildlife Research (ITAW) in Büsum, similar effects on the occurrence of avian flu and other viruses in marine mammals will be investigated.
Kiel cooperation strengthens new research initiative Ocean Health
As a scientific research initiative, Ocean Health will be further developed in close cooperation with the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel. In order to understand the mechanisms of infection, immune responses and their evolution, research will be conducted on common model organisms and in geographical focus regions, from the molecular level to global circulation models. Using new data analysis methods, results from different disciplines can contribute to improved models and prediction options.
In the future, coordinated field studies will investigate the interplay between challenging environmental conditions and the occurrence of marine diseases, but also the regulatory role of viruses and bacteria in ecosystems. This is planned, for example, on the Cape Verde Islands, in cooperation with the Ocean Science Centre Mindelo (GEOMAR), as well as in the North and Baltic Seas or in the North Atlantic, in cooperation with Dalhousie University. The new research initiative aims to make Kiel a globally visible hub of knowledge on ocean health through further international partnerships.
Publications related to Ocean Health (excerpt)
Bange A, Backes A, Garthe S & Schwemmer P (2023) Prey choice and ingestion of microplastics by common shelducks and common eiders in the Wadden Sea World Heritage Site. Mar Biol 170: 54, link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00227-023-04201-8
Bülck C, Nyström EEL, Koudelka T, Mannbar-Frahm M, Andresen G, Radhouani M, Tran F, Scharfenberg F, Schrell F, Armbrust F, Dahlke E, Zhao B, Vervaeke A, Theilig F, Rosenstiel P, Starkl P, Rosshart SP, Fickenscher H, Tholey A, Hansson GC, Becker-Pauly C (2023) Proteolytic processing of galectin-3 by meprin metalloproteases is crucial for host-microbiome homeostasis. Sci Adv 9: eadf4055, www.science.org/doi/10.1126/sciadv.adf4055
Chang WW, Thies AB, Tresguerres M & Hu MY (2023) Soluble adenylyl cyclase coordinates intracellular pH homeostasis and biomineralization in calcifying cells of a marine animal. Am J Physiol-Cell Physiol 324: C777–C786, journals.physiology.org/doi/full/10.1152/ajpcell.00524.2022
Chibani CM, Hertel R, Neumann-Schaal M, Goehlich H, Wagner K, Bunk B, Spröer C, Overmann J, Hoppert M, Marten SM, Roth O, Liesegang H, Wendling CC. (2023) Vibrio syngnathi sp. nov., a fish pathogen, isolated from the Kiel Fjord. Int J Syst Evol Microbiol 73,
Chou PH, Hu MY, Guh YJ, Wu GC, Yang SH, Tandon K, Shao YT, Lin LY, Chen C, Tseng KY, Wang MC, Zhang CM, Han BC, Lin CC, Tang SL, Jeng MS, Chang CF, Tseng YC (2023) Cellular mechanisms underlying extraordinary sulfide tolerance in a crustacean holobiont from hydrothermal vents. Proc R Soc B-Biol Sci 290: 20221973, royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/10.1098/rspb.2022.1973
Fokt H, Sakalyte G, Unni R, Abukhalaf M, Cassidy L, Marinos G, Godfroid M, Kinfu BM, Schmitz RA, Kaleta C, Tholey A, Baines JF, Dagan T, Unterweger D (2023) Closely related Bacteroides of the murine intestinal microbiota affect each other’s growth positively or negatively. 2023.03.05.530569 DOI 10.1101/2023.03.05.530569 [PREPRINT]
Garthe S, Schwemmer H, Peschko V, Markones N, Müller S, Schwemmer P & Mercker M (2023) Large-scale effects of offshore wind farms on seabirds of high conservation concern. Sci Rep 13: 4779, www.nature.com/articles/s41598-023-31601-z
Gehlert FO, Sauerwein T, Weidenbach K, Repnik U, Hallack D, Foerstner KU & Schmitz RA (2022) Dual-RNAseq analysis unravels virus-host interactions of MetSV and Methanosarcina mazei. Viruses-Basel 14: 2585, www.mdpi.com/1999-4915/14/11/2585
Goehlich H, Roth O, Sieber M, Chibani CM, Poehlein A, Rajkov J, Liesegang H & Wendling CC (2023) Suboptimal environmental conditions prolong phage epidemics in bacterial populations. Mol Ecol 2023 Jun 19. doi.org/10.1111/mec.17050 Epub ahead of print
Hayer S, Brandis D, Immel A, Susat J, Torres-Oliva M, Ewers-Saucedo C & Krause-Kyora B (2021) Phylogeography in an “oyster” shell provides first insights into the genetic structure of an extinct Ostrea edulis population. Sci Rep 11: 2307, doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-82020-x
Hu MY & Stumpp M (2023) Surviving in an Acidifying Ocean: Acid-base physiology and energetics of the sea urchin larva. Physiol Bethesda Md 38: 0, doi.org/10.1152/physiol.00007.2023
Jensen N, Weiland-Braeuer N, Joel S, Chibani CM & Schmitz RA (2023) The life cycle of Aurelia aurita depends on the presence of a microbiome in polyps prior to onset of strobilation. Microbiol Spectr, Online First, eLocator: e00262-23,
Kostiuk B, Santoriello FJ, Diaz-Satizabal L, Bisaro F, Lee K-J, Dhody AN, Provenzano D, Unterweger D & Pukatzki S (2021) Type VI secretion system mutations reduced competitive fitness of classical Vibrio cholerae biotype. Nat Commun 12: 6457,
Kuehn S, King F & Heubel K (2023) Decreased feeding rates of the copepod Acartia tonsa when exposed to playback harbor traffic noise. Front Mar Sci 10: 1134792, doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2023.1134792
Kuhwald K, Schneider von Deimling J, Schubert P & Oppelt N (2022) How can Sentinel-2 contribute to seagrass mapping in shallow, turbid Baltic Sea waters? Remote Sens Ecol Conserv 8: 328–346, doi.org/10.1002/rse2.246
Lehmann MK, Gurlin D, Pahlevan N, Alikas K, Conroy T, Anstee J, Balasubramanian SV, Barbosa CCF, Binding C, Bracher A, Bresciani M, Burtner A, Cao Z, Dekker AG, Di Vittorio C, Drayson N, Errera RM, Fernandez V, Ficek D, Fichot CG, Gege P, Giardino C, Gitelson AA, Greb SR, Henderson H, Higa H, Rahaghi AI, Jamet C, Jiang D, Jordan T, Kangro K, Kravitz JA, Kristoffersen AS, Kudela R, Li L, Ligi M, Loisel H, Lohrenz S, Ma R, Maciel DA, Malthus TJ, Matsushita B, Matthews M, Minaudo C, Mishra DR, Mishra S, Moore T, Moses WJ, Nguyễn H, Novo EMLM, Novoa S, Odermatt D, O'Donnell DM, Olmanson LG, Ondrusek M, Oppelt N, Ouillon S, Pereira Filho W, Plattner S, Verdú AR, Salem SI, Schalles JF, Simis SGH, Siswanto E, Smith B, Somlai-Schweiger I, Soppa MA, Spyrakos E, Tessin E, van der Woerd HJ, Vander Woude A, Vandermeulen RA, Vantrepotte V, Wernand MR, Werther M, Young K, Yue L (2023) GLORIA-A globally representative hyperspectral in situ dataset for optical sensing of water quality. Sci Data 10: 100, DOI 10.1038/s41597-023-01973-y,
Liu Y, Qu M, Jiang H, Schneider R, Qin G, Luo W, Yu H, Zhang B, Wang X, Zhang Y, Zhang H, Zhang Z, Wu Y, Zhang Y, Yin J, Zhang S, Venkatesh B, Roth O, Meyer A, Lin Q (2022) Immunogenetic losses co-occurred with seahorse male pregnancy and mutation in tlx1 accompanied functional asplenia. Nat Commun 13: 7610, doi.org/10.1038/s41467-022-35338-7
Matt A-S, Chang WW & Hu MY (2022) Extracellular carbonic anhydrase activity promotes a carbon concentration mechanism in metazoan calcifying cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci 119: e2203904119, doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2203904119
Parker J, Guslund NC, Jentoft S & Roth O (2022) Characterization of pipefish immune cell populations through single-cell transcriptomics. Front Immunol 13:820152 doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2022.820152
Roth O, Solbakken MH, Tørresen OK, Bayer T, Matschiner M, Baalsrud HT, Hoff SNK, Brieuc MSO, Haase D, Hanel R, Reusch TBH, Jentoft S (2020) Evolution of male pregnancy associated with remodeling of canonical vertebrate immunity in seahorses and pipefishes. Proc Natl Acad Sci 117: 9431–9439, doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1916251117
Schütt EM, Hundsdörfer MAJ, von Hoyningen-Huene AJE, Lange X, Koschmider A & Oppelt N (2023) First steps towards a near real-time modelling system of Vibrio vulnificus in the Baltic Sea. Int J Environ Res Public Health 20: 5543, doi.org/10.3390/ijerph20085543
Schwemmer P, Mercker M, Haecker K, Kruckenberg H, Kämpfer S, Bocher P, Fort J, Jiguet F, Franks S, Elts J, Marja R, Piha M, Rousseau P, Pederson R, Düttmann H, Fartmann T, Garthe S (2023) Behavioral responses to offshore windfarms during migration of a declining shorebird species revealed by GPS-telemetry. J Environ Manage 342: 118131, doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2023.118131
Stante M, Weiland-Bräuer N, Repnik U, Werner A, Bramkamp M, Chibani CM & Schmitz RA (2023) Four novel Caudoviricetes bacteriophages isolated from Baltic Sea water infect colonizers of Aurelia aurita. Viruses 15: 1525, doi.org/10.3390/v15071525
Unni R, Pintor KL, Diepold A & Unterweger D (2022) Presence and absence of type VI secretion systems in bacteria. Microbiol-Sgm 168: 001151, doi.org/10.1099/mic.0.001151
Verwega M-T, Trahms C, Antia AN, Dickhaus T, Prigge E, Prinzler MHU, Renz M, Schartau M, Slawig T, Somes CJ, Biastoch, A (2021) Perspectives on marine data science as a blueprint for emerging data science disciplines. Front Mar Sci 8: 678404
Weiland-Bräuer N, Pinnow N, Langfeldt D, Roik A, Güllert S, Chibani CM, Reusch TBH & Schmitz RA (2020) The native microbiome is crucial for offspring generation and fitness of Aurelia aurita. mBio 11: e02336-20
Wendling CC, Lange J, Liesegang H, Sieber M, Poehlein A, Bunk B, Rajkov J, Goehlich H, Roth O & Brockhurst MA (2022) Higher phage virulence accelerates the evolution of host resistance. Proc R Soc B Biol Sci 289: 20221070
Ocean Health Symposia
Every two years the International Ocean Health Symposium takes place in Kiel, Germany. Jointly organized by the Kiel Marine Science (KMS) priority research area at Kiel University and the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel, the symposia promote the exchange of international experts on the topic of ocean health with a focus on marine organismic health and the impact of marine pathogens on ecosystems and society. The most recent Kiel Symposium in 2022 has also been accepted as an activity under the UN Decade of Ocean Exploration and contributes to Goal 2, "A healthy and resilient ocean".
To the webpage of the joint press release
International Symposium: „Ocean Health: from emerging marine diseases, regulating functions, and governance implications“
Webpage of the Symposium
International Symposium: „Integrated Science for Future Ocean Health and Recovery“
Webpage of the Symposium