Nitrogen Meeting

The Agouron Institute hosted a meeting in October 2009 focused on diverse studies of the nitrogen cycle. The organizers of this meeting were Donald Canfield (U Southern Denmark), Paul Falkowski (Rutgers U), Alexander Glazer (UC Berkeley), Douglas Rees (Caltech) and Melvin Simon (Agouron Institute). As an educational tool, the speakers were asked to provide expanded abstracts with references to post on our website. Please contact the authors if you wish to use any content presented here. Click on the session to view the abstracts.


Keynote Address
Catalytic Reduction of Dinitrogen to Ammonia with Molybdenum under Mild Conditions
Richard R. Schrock (MIT)

Opening Address
The Changing Face of the Nitrogen Cycle
Donald E. Canfield (U Southern Denmark)

Session 1 – Summary of N Chemistry, Prebiotic N Chemistry, N Cosmogeochemistry
What Determines the Sources and Forms of N During the Evolution of Terrestrial Planets?
Sara Seager (MIT)

Nitrogen Fixation on the Early Earth and its Relationship to the Rise of Atmospheric Oxygen
James F. Kasting (Penn State)

Minerals and Prebiotic Nitrogen Fixation
Martin Schoonen (Stony Brook U)

Session 2 – Nitrogen Fixation
Enzymological Basis of Nitrogen Fixation (A post partisan look at nitrogenase with a view towards in vivo activity)
James B. Howard (U Minnesota)

Structural Biology of Nitrogenase
Douglas C. Rees (Caltech)

Nitrogenase Substrate Interaction
Dennis R. Dean (Virginia Tech)

The Evolution of Nitrogenase and Nif-like Proteins
Robert E. Blankenship (Washington University, St. Louis)

Session 3 – Nitrification
Out of the Blue: Planktonic Crenarchaea and the Ocean’s Nitrogen Cycle
Edward F. DeLong (MIT)

The Ecophysiology of Marine Ammonia-Oxidizing Archaea
Martin Könneke (U Oldenburg)

Ammonia Oxidizing Bacteria and Archaea Distribution Patterns and Dynamics in Estuaries and Oceans
Bess B. Ward (Princeton U)

Regulation of Aerobic Ammonia-oxidizing Metabolism
Lisa Y. Stein (U Alberta)

Session 4 – Denitrification
Benthic Nitrate Reduction in Estuaries: Process Rates and Key Functional Genes for Denitrification (DN), Nitrate Ammonification (DNRA) and Anammox (AN)
David B. Nedwell (U Essex)

Denitrification in Terrestrial Ecosystems
Peter M. Groffman (Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies)

Denitrifying Eukaryotes
Lars Peter Nielsen (Aarhus U)

Evening Session
Exploring the Feasibility of N2 Fixation at Single and Multiple Iron Sites
Jonas C. Peters (MIT)

Session 5 – Anammox
The Discovery of the Anammox Process and Beyond
J. Gijs Kuenen (TU Delft)

Distribution and Controls of Anaerobic Ammonium Oxidation in Natural Environments
Bo Thamdrup (U Southern Denmark)

Interactions of Anammox with other Microbial N-cycle Processes
Marcel Kuypers (Max Planck Institute, Bremen)

Session 6 – Ecology of the Nitrogen Cycle I – Aquatic Environments
Emerging Patterns of Nitrogen Fixation in the Oceans
Douglas G. Capone (USC)

Free-living and Symbiotic Marine Nitrogen Fixing Cyanobacteria
John Waterbury (WHOI)

One Hundred Years of the Nitrogen Cycle
L. A. Codispoti (U Maryland)

Ecological Stoichiometry of Nutrient Limitation in Lakes and Beyond
James Elser (Arizona State U)

Methane-fueled Syntrophs Fix Nitrogen in the Deep Sea
Victoria J. Orphan (Caltech)

Session 7 – Ecology of the Nitrogen Cycle II and Human Intervention
Long-term Nitrogen Dynamics in a Temperate Forest Ecosystem
Gene E. Likens (Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies)

The Global Nitrogen Cycle in the Climate System: Models and Observations
Elisabeth Ann Holland (National Center for Atmospheric Research)

Nitrogen: A Story of Food, Feed and Fuel
James N. Galloway (U Virginia)

Scale Transitions and Paradoxes in the Tropical Land Nitrogen Cycle
Lars Hedin (Princeton U)

Session 8 – Evolution of the Nitrogen Cycle
A Sluggish Ocean N Budget During the Last Ice Age
Daniel M. Sigman (Princeton U)

Climate Control of Oceanic Nitrogen Loss
Mark A. Altabet (U Massachusetts, Dartmouth)

Evolution of the Nitrogen Cycle, an ~omics Perspective
Martin Gunter Klotz (U Louisville)

The Past, Present and Future of the Nitrogen Cycle
Paul G. Falkowski (Rutgers U)

Closing Address
The Roles of Nitrogen in a Complex World: Assembling a Mosaic
Alexander N. Glazer (UC Berkeley)