Graphic: The distance of the Nautile(2,600 meters) and the Alvin (2,500 meters) from the East Pacific Ridge
Background image: Earth and the location of the East Pacific Ridge outside the Galapagos Islands
Caption: In 1999, during dives by the submersibles Alvin and Nautile, sulfide chimneys were collected from undersea hydrothermal vents on the East Pacific Rise. Vibrio species isolated from the chimneys were identified that bore significant similarity to Vibrio cholerae, suggesting that it is autochthonous, or native, to the deep sea. V. cholerae serves important functions in ocean and estuarine ecosystems, such as chitin digestion and nitrogen cycling.
Source: NSF, K. Woellert adapted from material and data from Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia Univ.
GRAHAM MICHAEL PURDY, Director, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
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Founded in 1997 the NSF-wide Life in Extreme Environments Program, that now involves ten NSF Divisions/Sections and NASA. Established the International Working Group (IWG) of Funding agency representatives with interest in supporting the next generation ocean drilling program beyond 2003, co-chaired with the Science and Technology Agency of Japan, currently with members from six nations or consortia. Reorganized the support and administrative staff structure within the Division, to better serve the needs of Program Officers Established NSF as a leading participant in the National Ocean Partnership Program (NOPP), and in the ongoing planning for an Integrated Ocean Observing and Prediction System.
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