University of Washington
David Stahl works on evolutionary and ecological origins of community assembly, stability, and efficiency informed by model microbial mutualism in co-cultures anchors many of our ongoing ENIGMA projects. He collaborates closely with the team across the 3 aims. His primary activities are in the assembly, modeling, and evolution of simple microbial communities simulating environmental systems and associated processes. These activities contribute to the general ENIGMA goal of developing foundational knowledge necessary for predicting and modulating the activities of natural microbial communities in reactors that simulate environmental conditions.
He will isolate and characterize field-relevant bacteria and archaea for developing laboratory models of field processes, including the design and construction of synthetic microbial communities for detailed kinetic, genetic, and isotopic characterization. Laboratory work will be complemented by field studies using abundance and isotopic composition of nitrogen species to identify significant nitrogen transformations operative at field scale. In coordination with field researchers, combined isotopic, molecular, and nitrogen speciation data will be used to help parameterize reactive transport models.