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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 515:73-81 (2014)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps11026

Physiological and biochemical responses of diatoms to projected ocean changes

Juntian Xu1,2, Kunshan Gao1,*, Yahe Li1, David A. Hutchins3

1State Key Laboratory of Marine Environmental Science, Xiamen University (Xiang-An campus, ZhouLongQuan A1-211), Xiamen, Fujian 361102, PR China
2School of Marine Science and Technology, Huaihai Institute of Technology, Lianyungang, Jiangsu 222005, PR China
3Marine and Environmental Biology, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Southern California,
3616 Trousdale Parkway, Los Angeles, California 90089, USA
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: With progressive future global change, marine phytoplankton in surface oceans will be subjected to ocean acidification, as well as to increased solar exposures and decreased vertical transport of nutrients from depth due to increasing stratification. We employed a simultaneous multivariate treatment approach to investigate the physiological and biochemical responses of the diatoms Thalassiosira pseudonana and Skeletonema costatum to these projected ocean changes. Diatoms were grown under different ‘clustered’ regimes of solar radiation, nutrients, and pCO2 (pH), reflecting present-day (2011) and potential mid-century (2050) and end-of-century (2100) scenarios. Growth rates, chlorophyll a contents and maximal photochemical quantum yield all decreased from the present to 2100 scenarios. While cellular particulate organic carbon significantly increased in both species along with increased cellular organic C:N ratios, biogenic silica content showed species-specific differences among the cluster treatments. Our results suggest that reduced thickness of the upper mixed layer with enhanced stratification may interact with ocean acidification to influence diatom-related biogeochemical processes by affecting their growth and biochemical composition in species-specific ways.


KEY WORDS: Biogenic silica · Growth · Multiple ocean changes · Particulate organic carbon · Skeletonema costatum · Thalassiosira pseudonana


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Cite this article as: Xu J, Gao K, Li Y, Hutchins DA (2014) Physiological and biochemical responses of diatoms to projected ocean changes. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 515:73-81. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps11026

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