AB 22:5-23 (2014)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/ab00582

REVIEW
Interactive effects of nutrient supply and other environmental factors on the sensitivity of marine primary producers to ultraviolet radiation: implications for the impacts of global change

John Beardall1,*, Slobodanka Stojkovic1, Kunshan Gao2

1School of Biological Sciences, Monash University, Clayton, Victoria 3800, Australia
2State Key Laboratory of Marine Environmental Science, Xiamen University, 361005 Xiamen, PR China
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Understanding the effects of global climate change on the algae that form the basis of most aquatic food chains is of paramount importance in our ability to make informed decisions about the future of production systems, marine ecosystems, and the global carbon cycle. Despite the Montreal Protocol to restrict the release of harmful chlorofluorocarbons into the atmosphere, ozone levels have not recovered at all latitudes, and in some regions levels of UVB are still rising due to interactions with phenomena related to climate change. However, the effects of UV radiation may be modulated by other environmental changes. In this review, we discuss how factors such as elevated CO2 and ocean acidification, increasing temperature, and reduced nutrient supply associated with enhanced stratification can interact with UV radiation to affect algal physiological performance and growth. For instance, nutrient limitation enhances UV-induced inhibition due to the reduced capacity of algae to screen out UVB and/or impairment of their capacity to repair damage. Higher temperatures tend to promote repair more than photochemical damage so result in a net reduction of UV inhibition. Elevated CO2 and ocean acidification has complex interactions with UV radiation, with mixed net outcomes for algal productivity. Differential effects of UVA and UVB have been shown to depend on their irradiance levels; while moderate levels of UVA stimulate growth and photosynthesis of some algae, UVB almost always results in harm to marine primary producers.


KEY WORDS: UV radiation · Algae · Global climate change · Ocean acidification · Nutrient limitation · Temperature


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Cite this article as: Beardall J, Stojkovic S, Gao K (2014) Interactive effects of nutrient supply and other environmental factors on the sensitivity of marine primary producers to ultraviolet radiation: implications for the impacts of global change. Aquat Biol 22:5-23. https://doi.org/10.3354/ab00582

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