The Grotzinger Group
Daniela Osorio Rodriguez
I am a geomicrobiologist from Colombia interested in how microorganisms shape the environments where they live, and how these local changes drive biogeochemical dynamics on a global scale. At Grotzinger group, my research is focused on the formation and preservation of microbial features in the rock record. I am attempting to find microfossils of aggregates formed by consortia between anaerobic methane-oxidizing archaea and sulfate-reducing bacteria in methane-derived carbonates and shales from the Colorado Tepee Buttes (Upper Cretaceous). The goal is to determine how the presence or activity of these microorganisms influenced the formation of the mineral textures present in the rocks, and, in turn, what are the rock facies that better favor the preservation of microbial fossils. I am currently using a combination of analytical techniques to identify potential fossils or evidences of microbial metabolism on the basis of morphological, chemical and isotopic features.
Besides this project, I am working with Jess Adkins attempting to constrain the marine sulfur cycle by means of the fractionation of sulfur isotopes by marine bacteria and phytoplankton during the degradation of dimethylsulfoniopropionate, the major organic sulfur compound in the ocean.