If you’ve ever studied microbiology, you will have encountered Tom Brock’s book on the “Biology of Microorganisms”. Brock is a pioneer in microbial research and is most known for his discovery of heat-tolerant “thermophiles”. As such, the International Society on Microbial Ecology society gives out it’s top award for young post-doctoral work in his name: the Tom Brock Award. Granted biannually at the society’s symposium (ISME), the Tom Brock Award acknowledges the accomplishments and promise of outstanding postdoctoral research associates based on their presentations. Sogin won the award based on her scientific accomplishments and innovation as well as clarity of her presentation at ISME17.
Sogin presented some of her research at ISME17 in a talk titled: “Sweetening the sea: sugars excreted by seagrass stimulate a marine rhizosphere”. Therein, she communicated her recent results revealing that seagrasses stimulate the rhizosphere microbial communities by fixing and translocating carbon to oligotrophic marine sediments.
“This work, which I carried out together with a team of researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, the University of Vienna, and the University of Oldenburg, provides the first mechanistic evidence for plant stimulation of seagrass rhizospheres”, Sogin explains. “I am incredibly honored to received the Tom Brock Award at this year's ISME17”, says Sogin. “I want to thank my supportive colleagues and collaborators at the Symbiosis department for creating an inspirational atmosphere that has allowed this work to flourish.”
The award ceremony took place at the 17th International Symposium on Microbial Ecology (ISME17), taking place in Leipzig from August 12 to 17, 2018.