Biographical Sketch

Introduction to Oceanography field trip aboard R/V Alabama Discovery, 23-Jun-2015.  

As of December 2012, I transitioned to Senior Marine Scientist at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab in Dauphin Island, AL and in 2013 became an Assistant Professor in the Department of Marine Sciences at the University of South Alabama.  I also hold an Assistant Research Biologist appointment in the Marine Science Institute at the University of California Santa Barbara.  I am interested in how phytoplankton (microscopic algae) cycle nutrients within the upper ocean where light penetrates.  My research focuses on the ecology of diatoms, a group of phytoplankton.  Diatoms have a characteristic shell made of amorphous silica (SiO2-nH2O), which is more dense than the seawater they live (i.e. diatoms sink).  They have a global distribution in both marine and freshwater environments and can occur in very high numerical abundances. 

Diatoms are important because:
  • Their cumulative global contribution to primary production is similar to that of the rain forests 
  • They are important players in the oceanic cycles of Carbon, Nitrogen, and Silicon
  • The sinking of diatom silica, and their associated organic matter, is a major component of the "Biological Pump"
  • The production and cycling of diatom silica plays a fundamental role in regulating the exchange of CO2 between the ocean and atmosphere

Marine cyanobacteria and Silicon?

Recently, I have also worked on examining the role of picocyanobacteria in the global Silicon cycle, specifically those from the genus Synechococcus.  Photosynthetic cyanobacteria, primarily from the genra Prochlorococcus and Synechoccocus, are the most abundant photosynthetic organisms on earth and generally the most abundant members of the phytoplankton community.  Recently, our Nature Geoscience paper demonstrates that laboratory cultures and field cells (from eastern equatorial Pacific and Sargasso Sea) of Synechoccocus accumulate elemental Silicon and we suggest that "picocyanobacteria may exert a previously unrecognized influence on the oceanic silicon cycle, especially in nutrient-poor waters."  A collaboration of scientists at Stony Brook University, Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, UCSB and DISL, are currently funded by the National Science Foundation to examine the variability in Silicon quotas for cultured clones and field cells of Synechoccocus and quantify their potential contribution to the rate which silica is produced in the open ocean (work with the Bermuda Atlantic Time-series Study program). 

iMOB Facility at Dauphin Island Sea Lab

Here at DISL, we have developed the integrated Microbial Oceanography and Biogeochemistry (iMOB) facility to better serve the research needs of investigators and students.  Click here for more information. 

Interested in working in the Krause Lab?  We are always looking for self-motivated, creative and hard-working personnel.  If you would like more information about potential student, internships or post-doc opportunities please email (

My publication titles in a Wordle

Dr. Jeffrey W. Krause
Senior Marine Scientist
Dauphin Island Sea Lab
101 Bienville Blvd
Dauphin Island, AL 36528
OFFICE: 251-861-2141 x7577
LABORATORY: 251-861-2141 x2289