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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 388:41-49 (2009)  -  DOI:

Effects of increased pCO2 and temperature on the North Atlantic spring bloom. III. Dimethylsulfoniopropionate

Peter A. Lee1,*, Jamie R. Rudisill1, Aimee R. Neeley1,7, Jennifer M. Maucher2, David A. Hutchins3,8, Yuanyuan Feng3,8, Clinton E. Hare3, Karine Leblanc3,9,10, Julie M. Rose3,11, Steven W. Wilhelm4, Janet M. Rowe4,5, Giacomo R. DiTullio1,6

1Hollings Marine Laboratory, College of Charleston, 331 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, South Carolina 29412, USA
2Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration,
219 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, South Carolina 29412, USA
3College of Marine and Earth Studies, University of Delaware, 700 Pilottown Road, Lewes, Delaware 19958, USA
4Department of Microbiology, University of Tennessee, 1414 West Cumberland Ave, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996, USA
5Department of Plant Pathology, The University of Nebraska, 205 Morrison Center, Lincoln, Nebraska 68583, USA
6Grice Marine Laboratory, College of Charleston, 205 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, South Carolina 29412, USA
7Present address: National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Calibration and Validation Office, 1450 S. Rolling Road, Suite 4.111, Halethorpe, Maryland 21227, USA
8Present address: Department of Biological Sciences, University of Southern California, 3616 Trousdale Parkway, Los Angeles, California 90089, USA
9Present address: Aix-Marseille Université, CNRS, LOB-UMR 6535, Laboratoire d’Océanographie et de Biogéochimie, OSU/Centre d’Océanologie de Marseille, 163 Avenue de Luminy, 13288 Marseille Cedex 09, France
10Present address: CNRS (CNRS/INSU), UMR 6535, Campus de Luminy, Case 901, 163 Avenue de Luminy,
13288 Marseille Cedex 09, France
11Present address: Biology Department, MS #32, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 266 Woods Hole Road, Woods Hole, Massachusetts 02543, USA

ABSTRACT: The CLAW hypothesis argues that a negative feedback mechanism involving phytoplankton-derived dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) could mitigate increasing sea surface temperatures that result from global warming. DMSP is converted to the climatically active dimethylsulfide (DMS), which is transferred to the atmosphere and photochemically oxidized to sulfate aerosols, leading to increases in planetary albedo and cooling of the Earth’s atmosphere. A shipboard incubation experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of increased temperature and pCO2 on the algal community structure of the North Atlantic spring bloom and their subsequent impact on particulate and dissolved DMSP concentrations (DMSPp and DMSPd). Under ‘greenhouse’ conditions (elevated pCO2; 690 ppm) and elevated temperature (ambient + 4°C), coccolithophorid and pelagophyte abundances were significantly higher than under control conditions (390 ppm CO2 and ambient temperature). This shift in phytoplankton community structure also resulted in an increase in DMSPp concentrations and DMSPp:chl a ratios. There were also increases in DMSP-lyase activity and biomass-normalized DMSP-lyase activity under ‘greenhouse’ conditions. Concentrations of DMSPd decreased in the ‘greenhouse’ treatment relative to the control. This decline is thought to be partly due to changes in the microzooplankton community structure and decreased grazing pressure under ‘greenhouse’ conditions. The increases in DMSPp in the high temperature and greenhouse treatments support the CLAW hypothesis; the declines in DMSPd do not.

KEY WORDS: Particulate DMSP · Dissolved DMSP · Climate change · Global warming · Carbon dioxide · Temperature · Biogeochemistry

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Cite this article as: Lee PA, Rudisill JR, Neeley AR, Maucher JM and others (2009) Effects of increased pCO2 and temperature on the North Atlantic spring bloom. III. Dimethylsulfoniopropionate. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 388:41-49.

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