Climate change has many consequences, one of which is the loss of oxygen from the Ocean. Oxygen plays a critical role for almost all life forms on Earth but recent modelling results suggest that oceanic oxygen levels will decrease rapidly over the next decades thus challenging the marine ecosystem and biogeochemistry.
Microbes are largely governing the Ocean’s biogeochemistry and productivity. Thus, they are a fundamental component of oceanic life. In how far microbes are able to respond or even to counteract the effects of oxygen loss in the Ocean is, however, unclear. My goal is to investigate, whether a microbial feedback loop regulating the oceanic oxygen budget exists. Ultimately, I want to shed light on whether the Ocean will be able to counteract climate change at least to a certain degree through microbial activity.