Warneke, A.

Alex Warneke

San Diego State University

 
Today we dive deeper with researcher and Beneath the Waves Director of Media and Marketing, Alex Warneke. Alex is currently a Masters Student at San Diego State University where she studies how organism communicate utilizing chemical signals. She explains, “The ocean is ruled by these compounds that dictate interactions from how to find mates to defensive compounds that deter predators. You can’t see these chemicals, but they are one of the main factors driving ocean interactions and processes. Often times these are the same chemicals that humans extract from the ocean to cure diseases.” Alex’s primary research examines the concept of “information-disruption” whereby these natural chemical pathways are being  disturbed by noxious chemicals that we are putting into our oceans. 
 
Q: What draws you “Beneath the Waves”?:
 
Exploration. I love the feeling of standing in awe at the vast expanse of the kelp forest or wondering at the smallest critter I can find on a reef. Each piece plays a role in the overall functioning of the ecosystem and that is truly marvelous. To stand witness to all of this and more is what draws me beneath the waves time and time again.

 

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Doing yoga at work.


 
Q: If you could make one film regarding the oceans, what/who would be the subject?

 

As someone who studies contaminants in the ocean, I see the direct impacts man has had on them. Humanity’s ignorance is astounding. People do not realize just how connected we are to this watery habitat and this disconnect will be our undoing. If I could make a film to move people to just do something and not sit around and wait for the ocean’s problems to fix themselves (which they won’t) I would do it.

 

Q: When not in the lab, on a boat, or doing science, where can we find you?

 

My science is driven by the creativity that stems from other outlets. I love music and yoga. I enjoy blogging, reading, or just hanging out with my puppy.

 

For more about Alex and her research, visit her websites: www.alexwarneke.com & www.deepseanews.com or follow her on Twitter @Alex_Warneke