- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 28, 2014

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Fifty of the most prominent ocean scientists in the country will come to the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences in Maine for a research event about the response of marine plankton to changing ocean conditions.

The East Boothbay laboratory will host the event from Wednesday to Friday. Organizers say the workshop will seek to integrate genetics, biology and geochemistry to improve scientists’ understanding of how plankton respond to changing environmental conditionals in global oceans.

Plankton are tiny organisms that live in the ocean and serve as food for whales and fish. Dr. Michael W. Lomas, a marine biogeochemist at Bigelow Laboratory, said it is “vital that we understand everything about them” because of their critical role in the ocean’s food chain.

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