Funded by:

FWF research project P24565-B22 Thiotrophic ciliate mutualism between Cand. Thiobios zoothamnicoli and Zoothamnium niveum – cooperation goes empirical


During this stay we finally performed a set of experiments under oxic conditions supplemented with sulfide and variable microbial densities in the seawater to see whether the amount of microbes ingested by the host influences the host growth and the proliferation of the symbiont. We completed our sample set for the population genetic analyses covering a third year at different sites. According to preliminary NanoSIMS analysis of the 13C-bicarbonate incubation from last year, we repeated the incubations using adjusted concentrations and time. We also investigated the contraction behavior of Z. niveum under various conditions using timelapse photography under the stereomicroscope. Finally, we repeated the so called “Apo Experiment” for which we incubated under oxic conditions and followed the breakdown of the association.


Monika Bright

Salvador Espada Hinojosa

Jean Marie Volland

Lukas Schuster