May 2016 Newsletter
Stay updated with our bi-monthly newsletters!
The University of South Florida, Eckerd College, Florida Institute of Oceanography, Florida State University, Georgia Tech, Harte Research Institute, Mind Open Media, Mote Marine Laboratory, Pennsylvania State University, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Technical University of Hamburg, Texas A&M University, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, University of Calgary, University of Miami, University of South Alabama, University of Western Australia, University of West Florida, Wageningen University, and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute

This edition of the C-IMAGE Consortium Newsletter remembers the sixth anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, looks into ongoing ecotoxicology studies and recaps the outreach of Consortium members over the past two months. 

Year 2 Quarter 1 Reports Submitted:
Thank you to all who submitted additions to our quarterly Activity Reports. Final quarterly compilations will be emailed to you. These reports covered research updates and progress since the beginning of the year.

The next quarterly reports are due 15 July, 2016.

2nd Symposium on Deep-Sea Oil Spills - 19-20 September, 2016 - Hamburg, Germany

C-IMAGE members from the Technical University of Hamburg are hosting the
2nd Symposium on Deep-Sea Oil Spills in mid-September. More information about the symposium can be found here. A screening of 'Dispatches from the Gulf' will be held during the evening.

March 15, 2016 - Call for abstracts
July 15, 2016 - Deadline for abstract submission
August 1, 2016 - Notification of abstract acceptance
August 19, 2016 - Room reservation deadline
August 31, 2016 - Registration deadline
September 19-20, 2016 - Symposium

Conference Calls:
Task 6 Update, 22 March, 2016:  Ecosystem Modeling
Task 4 Update, 23 March, 2016: Ecosystem Impacts

RFP IV Directors Update Call, 1 April, 2016

GRIIDC Update Call, 5 April, 2016

Task 1 & 2 Update, 7 April, 2016: Near- & Far-field modeling & High Pressure Experiments Joint Call

Task 3 Update, 8 April, 2016: Sedimentary Deposition

Notes and recordings from all calls are available upon request to Ben Prueitt.
Exposure Trials continue at Mote Aquaculture Park
Ecotoxicology studies will quantify impacts of oil on fishes 
Dr. Wetzel (Task 5 Lead) measures oil for exposure trials.
C-IMAGE researchers have studied the monthly and annual recovery of fishes in the Gulf of Mexico since 2010, finding fish with lesions (sores) in impacted areas and Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) levels in Red Snapper, King Snake Eels and Golden Tilefish. But how does a fish respond  in the days and weeks after oil exposure? This immediate response of fish to oil will be tested through a series of exposure trials taken on by C-IMAGE Task 5 members.

The Grand Scheme
The exposure studies, taking place at the Mote Aquaculture Park (MAP) in Sarasota, FL, will analyze the pathways of oil into fish. In controlled experiment tanks, three species of fish (Red Drum, Southern Flounder, and Pompano) each representing different lifestyles and habitats, will be exposed to oil through (1) dietary ingestion, (2) water accommodated fraction (a water-oil mixture), or (3) oiled sediments. The fish used are raised in captivity, so their exposure during these studies will be their first contact with oil.

The data collected from each exposure trial will contribute to the development of Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) models. AOPs  look at the chemical and physiological response of an organism to a change in environment; in this case, a fish being exposed to oil.

Adverse Outcome Pathways provide cascading effects of oil exposure to organisms (Takeshita et al.)

The information about the sub-lethal effects of oil on fish will also be incorporated into ecosystem model runs for the developing Atlantis and Campeche Bay models.

Filtering it Out
MAP's Holding & filtering tanks
When conducting the exposure trials, controlling the oil levels in the seawater is critical to avoiding cross-contamination. To avoid using fresh artificial seawater for each trial, Complete Water Services of Marrietta, GA  has provided a state-of-the art water filtration system for the C-IMAGE exposure trials.

This system uses a series of filters and UV lights to remove particulates, sands and oils to recirculate the cleaned artificial seawater. Without the help of Complete Water Services through construction of MAP, the exposure trials would be behind pace.

What we're Looking for
The Exposure trials taking place at Mote Aquaculture Park will have various samples of water, fish, and sediment collected for the development of the AOP  and other studies within Task 5 .

Microbial and Bacterial Studies:
Microscreen assays are being used to study the potential mutation factors of oil on marine bacteria. Samples of oil-contaminated food and water accommodated fractions (WAF) have been collected from previous exposure trials with preliminary evidence of higher bacterial contamination in oiled food. Additional studies regarding the microbiome of exposed fish are in development with Dr. Jeffrey at the University of West Florida.

Sub-Lethal effects in Fish:
Intra-peritoneal injections are used to induce an immune response in fish samples.
The Exposure trial includes separate studies of contaminated foods, contaminated sediments, and a WAF exposure to three different species of fish. After different lengths of oil exposure a variety of samples are collected to analyze the range of responses which could affect fish health.

Muscle and liver tissues, vials of blood and bile, otoliths and eyeballs are collected to analyze contamination to oil, especially polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), a more toxic component of oil. C-IMAGE is studying PAHs for metabolic capacity and model development for PAH impacts in fish. Changes in the fishes' DNA and RNA after exposure are being studied to identify activity in genes attributed to immune-system health.

Overall, the Ecotoxicology studies will lead to the identification of biomarkers, or subtle health signals, related to oil exposure. Exposure studies are ongoing throughout 2016 and 2017, and if you are interested in collaboration with your own studies, please contact Dr. Dana Wetzel.
C-IMAGE Students of the Month
The two latest C-IMAGE Students of the Month study benthic forams and deep-sea plume modeling.  Tonio Nava and Marcia Trillo are M.S. students at UNAM and the University of Miami-RSMAS, respectively.

April 2016
Tonio Nava, M.S. Student, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México-Instituto de Ciencias del Mar y Limnología.

Tonio Nava aboard the B/O Justo Sierra

Tonio studies benthic foraminifera for population and ecological studies in Campeche Bay.

To read more about Tonio's research, visit the blog post here.

May 2016
Marcia Trillo, M.S. Student, University of Miami-Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.
Marcia working in the SUSTAIN Building, RSMAS
Our Near-field and far-field modeling group is working to recreate oil spills under varying conditions. Incorporating strong currents and adding dispersants which changes droplet sizes in computer models can make predicting their eventual fate more accurate. Marcia Trillo, a M.S. student studying in Dr. Claire Paris' lab, is helping answer questions about oil-water interactions.

Read Marcia's full Student of the Month Blog, here
Sixth Anniversary Highlights C-IMAGE PIs and Projects 
The Deepwater Horizon spill began 20 April, 2010 and lasted 87 days.
April 20th provides a reminder of the 2010 events and a realization of the progress made since.  Several C-IMAGE PIs were featured in local media outlets, providing their opinions of the impacts and progress made since 2010.

Interview on Leonard Lopate-WNYC - Dr. Steve Murawski

Looking for weathered tar balls known as gingersnap cookies, Dr. Chris Reddy is featured as WHOI's Image of the Day on April 20th.

If you know of more news articles from the 6th anniversary, please share with Ben Prueitt.

ACS Editors Choice: Simulating Gas-Liquid−Water Partitioning and Fluid Properties of Petroleum under Pressure: Implications for Deep-Sea Blowouts, Environmental Science & Technology
The model the authors created predicts the outcomes of an oil spill based on 280 components of oil composition.
Gros et al. (2016) was selected by the American Chemical Society as Editor's Choice! Congratulations to the Authors.

Unlike a more typical oil spill at the sea surface, a deep-sea petroleum release is affected by extreme high-pressure conditions, which fundamentally alter the state and behaviors of the petroleum in the sea environment.

Using liquid densities, gas/liquid volume fractions, and liquid viscosities collected in laboratory tests, the estimated composition of the Deepwater Horizon blowout was 29.44% gas and 56-71% liquid.

Jonas Gros, Christopher M. Reddy, Robert K. Nelson, Scott A. Socolofsky, and J. Samuel Arey,  Simulating Gas-Liquid−Water Partitioning and Fluid Properties of Petroleum under Pressure: Implications for Deep-Sea Blowouts. Environmental Science & Technology Article ASAP. 10.1021/acs.est.5b04617 | 
Suspended Petroleum

At the intersection of art and science, Robin Rowland (an Eckerd College student) finds her groove with her latest work.  Using recycled test tubes and fishing line (two petroleum products) a 3-D mobile shows the time-lapse of oil droplet distribution model on July 15th, 2010 from the Deepwater Horizon blowout.

Robin Rowland, an undergraduate student at Eckerd College collaboartated with two C-IMAGE PIs, Dr. Hastings (Eckerd College) and Dr. Paris (University of Miami) for recycled lab supplies and dispersion model outputs.

C-IMAGE: Reaching Out in the Community....
"Probiotics in Aquaculture: Tiny Organisms and their Giant Impacts.", Dr. Andrea Tarnecki - 14 March
Part of the Mote Marine Laboratory lecture series held in Sarasota, FL, Dr. Tarnecki  shared the importance of bacteria in relation to learning about raising fishes.

Teachers @ Sea Day at Sea, 2 April, St. Petersburg, FL
Thirteen teachers boarded the R/V Weatherbird II for a full-day of field science in Tampa Bay.
As part of a BWET teacher professional development hosted by the C-IMAGE education team, thirteen teachers from Florida participated in a full day expedition aboard the R/V Weatherbird II. Teachers performed water analysis, surface plankton tows, sediment grab samples, and a bottom trawl while learning the importance of each of these methods to researchers. A full album of photos can be found here

Shokouh Rahsepar participates in FameLab Netherlands Competition
Science is everything but boring. FameLab is the biggest science communication competition in the world. PhD student from Wageningen University, Shokouh Rahsepar participated in this year's competition discussing her research on microbial biodegradation. Here is more information about FameLab Netherlands and a video of Shokouh's speech

Story Collider Slideshows Available
Story Collider slideshows available online
During the 2016 GoMOSES Meetings, C-IMAGE held their first Story Collider event sharing personal stories of five people who studied or investigated the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Their 10-minute spoken-word stories are available on our Youtube channel .

Smithsonian Natural History Museum features 'Dispatches from the Gulf' - 25 March
As part of the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital, Dispatches from the Gulf screened in Washington D.C. Following the film Drs. Mandy Joye, Steve Murwaski, Rita Colwell and Martin Grosell hosted a panel discussion about the progress after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Joye, Murawski, Colwell, and Grosell participate in a panel discussion about GoMRI research.
Other past documentary screenings include:
  • Louisiana Art & Science Museum (Baton Rouge) - March 6, 2016
  • Corpus Christi Museum of Science & History - March 8, 2016
  • Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (Jackson) - March 12
  • The Witte Museum (San Antonio) - March 26, 2016
  • GulfQuest - National Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico (Mobile) - April 7, 2016
  • Sci-Port: Louisiana's Science Center (Shreveport) - April 7, 2016
  • MOSH - Museum of Science & History (Jacksonville) - April 21, 2016
  • Green bench Brewing Co. (St. Petersburg) - May 4, 2014
Dr. Greg Stunz spoke at TEDx San Antonio - 5 March
"A world without sharks is a much scarier than a world without them."
Dr. Greg Stunz studies fish and sharks off the Texas coast and shares his thoughts on the disappearing shark population in a TEDxSan Antonio talk. More information about Stunz's work shark tagging with Ocearch can be found here.

Oil Spill Science Seminar: Where did the oil go? - 14 April, Mobile, AL
This seminar was hosted by the Sea Grant Oil Spill Outreach Team and NOAA's Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center. The seminar focused on the transport and fate of oil from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Scientists talked about oil on the seafloor, oil weathering, sedimentation, and marine snow. Recordings of the speakers' presentations are available here.

C-IMAGE researchers Drs. Chris Reddy (WHOI), Jeff Chanton (FSU), Gregg Brooks (Eckerd College), David Hollander  and Isabel Romero (USF) covered topics including mapping the oil spill, MOSSFA marine snow, sedimentary impacts, and chemical tracers in the Gulf of Mexico.

Take our Daughters & Sons to Work Day - 28 April, 2016
The C-IMAGE Consortium, C-SCAMP Project and Florida Institute of Oceanography collaborated with 28 children of USF-St. Petersburg to host four activities focused around science and research. Youth spent time with scientists learning about sediment coring and oil spills, counting fish using video, the impacts of oil on fish, and a tour of the R/V Weatherbird II.

Upcoming events:
Pint of Science Tampa, 23-25 May, Breweries across Tampa Bay
Pint of Science hosts science-oriented talks at breweries over shared frosty beverages. On 23-15 May, Pint of Science Tampa will host several C-IMAGE researchers across the Tampa Bay area. Other regions hold Pint of Science events including Miami, Houston, and Boston . You may find more information here.

World Ocean's Day, 8 June
A reminder that World Ocean's Day is Wednesday, 8 June. Last year, Ocean Conservancy hosted a #MyOceanQ where Dr. Isabel Romero and Ben Prueitt fielded the public's questions about the oceans.

C-IMAGE Spotlight Videos
Advice for Young Scientists
Advice for Young Scientists

The C-IMAGE outreach team wants to hear more about how our members interact with the communities. If there is an upcoming event, let Ben Prueitt know and we can promote it through social media, and highlight it in upcoming newsletters.
Recent Publications

As research is submitted and published through the months, please remember to have this exact phrase in the Acknowledgements or a similar section:

"This research was made possible by a grant from The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative.  Data are publicly available through the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative Information & Data Cooperative (GRIIDC) at (doi: <doi1> [, <doi2>, <doi3> ...])."


"This research was made possible in part by a grant from The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative, and in part by [list other sources]. Data are publicly available through the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative Information & Data Cooperative (GRIIDC) at (doi: <doi1> [, <doi2>, <doi3> ...])."

Additionally, before submitting any manuscript for publication, verify with the data team ( Richard McKenzie & Todd Chavez) that GRIID-C has the data in place. 
News Articles

Dispersants, beaches, and radar  - GoMRI eNews - 8 March, 2016

Drs Ernst Peebles and Erin Pulster featured in Rising Tides - USF College of Marine Science Media - 11 March, 2016

U.S. and Cuba: Work Together on Energy - Huffington Post - 21 March, 2016

Alvin, anchovies and Dispersants  - GoMRI eNews - 22 March, 2016

Marsh, SAV, and Marine Snow - GoMRI eNews - 5 April, 2016

Evaluating impacts from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill  - USF College of Marine Science Media - 11 April, 2016

Guest Post: A Woman in Film Highlights Women in Science (Marilyn Weiner) - Women and Hollywood - 18 April, 2016

Dispersants, drifters, and horseflies - GoMRI eNews - 19 April, 2016

The Loop podcasts featured as  Ten Outstanding Education Products Six Years After Deepwater Horizon
- GoMRI News - 20 April, 2016

Day Trips: Coastal Hall at HMNS with Dr. Wes Tunnell - Houston Community College TV - 27 April, 2016

GoMRI Mourns the Passing of Dr. Stan Kuczaj - GoMRI News - 28 April, 2016

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