SAMS news room

Marine phytoplankton laid bare


Friday 23 August 2013 - Next month a leading microbial expert is to give a public lecture at SAMS looking at what's for and against algae.

Professor Keith Davidson, the head of microbial and molecular biology at SAMS, will explain how marine phytoplankton can be both vital for and harmful to life.

The tiny organisms form the base of the marine food chain and are crucial to global climate. However, some marine phytoplankton species, often called harmful algae, produce biotoxins that can be dangerous to humans and other mammals and can have a negative impact on coastal aquaculture like shellfish.

Marine phytoplankton: the good, the bad and the not so ugly, is part of the University of the Highlands and Islands’ free public lecture series.

Speaking about his forthcoming talk, Professor Davidson said: “I am honoured to be invited to present the first of the university’s inaugural professorial lectures to be given at SAMS. I hope the lecture will provide some insights into the fascinating world of marine microbes.”

It will be the first public talk he has given since being made a professor of the university earlier this year.

Professor Davidson’s inaugural lecture takes place from 5:15pm to 7pm at SAMS, Dunstaffnage, Oban, on Monday 9 September.

This lecture is part of a series organised by the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI). To book a place or find out about video conference facilities in your area, please contact the UHI’s events team on 01463 279 344 or at


Professor Keith Davidson is the head of the microbial and molecular biology department at SAMS. He can be contacted by email.

For more on this event contact:

Susan Szymborski, UHI Communications officer
Phone: 01463 279 222 or email

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