Dr. Thompson is a biological oceanographer interested in the diversity, ecology, and evolution of microorganisms present in the environment. During her graduate work at the MIT-WHOI Joint Program in Oceanography, Thompson examined how the micronutrient iron plays a role in the ecology of a globally abundant cyanobacterium, Prochlorococcus, through analysis of whole-genome expression patterns and growth physiology experiments. During her postdoc in Marine Sciences at UC Santa Cruz, Thompson studied an unusual nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria using single cell analysis techniques and discovered its symbiosis with a unicellular alga. Before joining ISB, Thompson worked in the Advanced Cytometry Group at BD Biosciences to develop novel methods for applying flow cytometry to environmental microbiology. including development of a technique for cell sorting of live anaerobic microbes. At the ISB, Thompson is continuing to study the ecology and evolution of Prochlorococcus in the lab and in the open ocean and is pursuing single cell analysis of anaerobic microbes through applied flow cytometry.
Single Cell Analysis
Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution