Biogeochemical implications of altered metabolism in phage-infected microbes
Microbes mediate biogeochemical cycling in soil and marine ecosystems. When microbes are infected with viruses, phage-infected cells, or "virocells", can have an altered metabolism. My research examines the metabolic profile of phage-infected microbial cells, exploring the implications of "virocell" metabolism on biogeochemical cycling, with a particular focus on soil carbon. Soils are critical carbon reservoirs, storing more carbon than the atmosphere and biosphere combined. Elucidating the role of viruses in soils may help manage soils to enhance carbon storage. Harnessing metabolic tools to study the "virocell", I explore how phage alter the fate of soil carbon.