Complexity Postdoctoral Fellow
Omidyar Postdoctoral Fellow
Growing up in the salt marshes of southeast Texas first inspired Daniel Muratore to pursue understanding of the alien world of ocean life. Through a detour studying theoretical ecology and infectious disease dynamics as an undergraduate, they found their way back to the ocean studying marine microbial ecosystems at Maureen Coleman's lab at the University of Chicago before joining Joshua Weitz's group at Georgia Tech for a Ph.D. in Quantitative Biosciences.
Now, Daniel studies how fundamental mechanisms of microbial life, such as resource uptake, viral infection, and evolution, generate complex phenomena at larger scales in the open ocean. They are particularly interested in how marine microbial ecosystems drive massive global fluxes of carbon and other elements between the atmosphere and the deep sea via an effect deemed the 'biological pump', and what roles viral infection might take in changing the quantity and efficiency of the biological pump in a changing ocean. Daniel’s research integrates nonlinear dynamical modeling with bioinformatics and statistics to synthesize oceanographic observations collected at sea in a complexity framework. Their recent work includes using game theory to explore the evolutionary dynamics of tradeoffs between nutrient acquisition and viral immunity in iron-limited phytoplankton and using machine learning to identify emergent coordination in community-wide gene regulatory networks and associated molecular intermediates over the day/night cycle in the open surface ocean.
Daniel's research focuses on multiple aspects of the knowledge generating process from theory and simulation to data analysis to classical oceanographic observations in the field. Having spent over 50 days in the past year at sea, Daniel has collected data to test theories about the emergent scaling relationships in ecosystems and different models for the impact of viral infection on surface ocean chemistry and carbon export to depth. When not on a ship, Daniel enjoys yoga and teaching pilates classes for their labmates lovingly deemed 'labilates'.