Microbial community structure and dynamics at the µ-scale

Although in many cases microbial community dynamics may appear as stable at macro-scales, at the micro-scales dynamics are characterized by fast growth and collapse cycles. At those small scales, ecological interactions such as social cheating, cross-feeding, antagonism or predation play a significant role in determining the growth and demise of specific populations. Using high-throughput genomics and model ecosystems with micro-scale structure, we are discovering the forces that drive natural community assembly dynamics at micro-scales. Our long-term goal is to learn how to design interventions that could shift communities towards more favorable metabolic states.