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The cell count records of Expedition 320/321 deviate from the usual cell count records found in many other ODP and IODP drill sites. Some of these deviations can be related to lithologic changes caused by the varying productivity regimes in the overlying water. However, several changes cannot be related to lithology and may be caused by geochemical changes (e.g., redox fronts). A detailed investigation of geochemical and other controls on microbial abundance and distribution in subsurface sediment will remain the subject of future studies.