Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences

Ocean Life, Planet Health

William Wilson

Dr. Willie Wilson

Director, National Center for Marine Algae and Microbiota (NCMA)

081204_Willieforwebpage.jpgSenior Research Scientist
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences
60 Bigelow Drive
P.O. Box 380
East Boothbay, ME   04544
Phone: 202 747 3255 (x310)
Fax: 202 747 3257


  • Post Doc, Marine Viruses, University of Warwick, UK, 1994 - 1998
  • PhD, Marine Viruses, University of Warwick,UK, 1994
  • MSc, Cyanobacteria Genetics, University of Warwick, UK, 1991
  • BSc, Marine Biology and Biochemistry, University College of North Wales, Bangor, UK, 1990

Research Interests

Dr Willie Wilson is an algal virus ecologist. He has 21 years research experience and is currently a Senior Research Scientist at Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences and Director of the NCMA.  His research focuses on the many roles of marine algal viruses, which he describes as “lubricants of the great engines of planetary control”.  Emerging research interests include giant marine viruses and algal biofuels.  He is also enthusiastic about scientific outreach and technology transfer.  Dr Wilson’s research has contributed to 85 publications in internationally renowned journals and books and, as PI and co-PI he has won over $15-million in grants from federal agencies since 1998.

Selected Publications

  • Yoon HS, Price DC, Stepanauskas R, Rajah VD, Sieracki ME, Wilson WH, Yang EC, Duffy S & Bhattacharya D (2011) Single-Cell Genomics Reveals Organismal Interactions in Uncultivated Marine Protists. Science 332:714-717
  • Fischer, MG, Allen MJ, Wilson WH, Suttle CA (2010) Giant virus with a remarkable complement of genes infects marine zooplankton. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107(45): 19508-19513.
  • Emerson D. & Wilson WH (2009) Giving microbial diversity a home. Nature Reviews Microbiology 7: 758.
  • Frada M, Probert I, Allen MJ & Wilson WH & De Vargas C (2008) The "Cheshire Cat" escape strategy of the coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi in response to viral infection. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 105: 15944-15949.
  • Wilson WH, Schroeder DC, Allen MJ et al. (2005) Complete Genome Sequence and Lytic Phase Transcription Profile of a Coccolithovirus. Science 309: 1090-1092
  • Wilson WH, Carr NG & Mann NH (1996) The effect of phosphate status on the kinetics of cyanophage infection in the oceanic cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. WH7803. Journal of Phycology 32: 506-516.
  • Wilson WH, Newman J, Mann NH & Carr NG (1991) Cloning and sequence analysis of the phycocyanin genes of the marine cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. WH 7803. Plant Molecular Biology 17: 931-933.

Willie Wilson Laboratory