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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 212:297-300 (2001)  -  doi:10.3354/meps212297

Phytoplankton potential growth rate versus increase in cell numbers: estimation of cell lysis

E. Garcés*, M. Masó

Institut de Ciències del Mar, P/Joan de Borbó, s/n, 08039 Barcelona, Spain

ABSTRACT: The in situ growth rate of phytoplankton is defined as the potential growth rate without adjustment for losses due to cell mortality when it is measured by the cell cycle approach. In contrast, the method that assesses the cell number variation of the population in diffusion chambers takes cell mortality into account. We compare the 2 methods for natural blooms of dinoflagellates (Alexandrium minutum, Alexandrium taylori, Ceratium furca, Dinophysis sacculus, Gymnodinium pulchellum and Gyrodinium corsicum) grown in various situations and locations and data reported elsewhere. The in situ potential growth rates showed great intraspecific variability. The use of the differences between the 2 methods as a measure of in situ cell lysis is discussed.

KEY WORDS: Dinoflagellate · HABs · Growth rate · Loss rate

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