Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Variable Light Illuminates the Distribution of Picophytoplankton

19.12.2007
Tiny photosynthetic plankton less than a millionth of a millimeter in diameter numerically dominate marine phytoplankton. Their photosynthesis uses light to drive carbon dioxide uptake, fueling the marine food web over vast areas of the oceans.

A new study published in this week’s PLoS ONE by post-doctoral researcher Dr Christophe Six and a team of scientists from Mount Allison University, Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada, illuminates how the environment regulates the distributions of these ecologically important species.

Dr Doug Campbell, Canadian Research Chair in Environmental Processes and co-author explains, "Phytoplankton are entrained in the water column and are thus subject to rapid changes in light as they mix through the upper layer of the ocean."

Dr Christophe Six adds, “Phytoplankton need light for photosynthesis and survival, but surprisingly this light also inactivates a key component of the photosynthetic apparatus, photosystem II. This Photoinactivation of photosystem II decreases photosynthesis and can even kill cells, unless they can counteract the damage through repair, which requires nutrients.”

“We found the picophytoplankton species isolated from different regions of the ocean have different abilities for this repair, and therefore have different abilities to tolerate increases in light. Their repair capacities are consistent with the different light and nutrient regimes in their local environments; species from deep ocean regions with stable light and low nutrients have very limited repair capacity, but species from coastal regions with more variable light and higher nutrients are more able to cope with variable light through rapid repair.”

This result indicates that picophytoplankton species’ tolerance of exposures to high light can help to explain how these organisms are distributed throughout the ocean. The group measures the rates of photoinactivation and the rates of the counteracting repair in a wide variety of phytoplankton species, and next plans to contribute to ocean models to predict phytoplankton carbon cycling in response to future climate change.

Andrew Hyde | alfa
Further information:
http://www.plosone.org/doi/pone.0001341

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Global threat to primates concerns us all
19.01.2017 | Deutsches Primatenzentrum GmbH - Leibniz-Institut für Primatenforschung

nachricht Reducing household waste with less energy
18.01.2017 | FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz-Institut für Informationsinfrastruktur GmbH

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents

19.01.2017 | Studies and Analyses

Magnetic moment of a single antiproton determined with greatest precision ever

19.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

CRISPR meets single-cell sequencing in new screening method

19.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>