Nitrogen fixation in the western English Channel (NE Atlantic Ocean)


Rees, Andrew P., Gilbert, Jack A. and Kelly-Gerreyn, Boris A. (2009) Nitrogen fixation in the western English Channel (NE Atlantic Ocean). Marine Ecology Progress Series, 374, 7-12. (doi:10.3354/meps07771).

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Description/Abstract

In temperate Atlantic waters (18.8 to 20.1°C), biological nitrogen fixation has been
demonstrated by 2 independent measurements: 15N-N2 incorporation and nifH identification in the
DNA and expressed messenger RNA (mRNA). At 2 stations in the western English Channel, bulk
waters were incubated with 15N-N2. At the high levels of particulate nitrogen (≤11.5 μmol N l–1),
absolute fixation rates of 18.9 ± 0.01 and 20.0 nmol N l–1d–1 were determined. While a caveat must
accompany the magnitude of the rates presented due to the limited number of data, the presence and
activity of diazotrophic organisms in these waters is of ecological significance and may affect current
attitudes to nitrogen and carbon budgets. In particular, our estimate of the rate of N fixation
(0.35 mmol N m–2 d–1) is comparable to that of denitrification rates in UK shelf seas. Molecular analysis
identified a diversity of expressed nifH genes, and 21 different prokaryotic nifH transcripts were
identified.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 0171-8630 (print)
Related URLs:
Keywords: Temperate Atlantic · Nitrogen fixation · Diazotrophy · nifH · Western English Channel
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GC Oceanography
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Q Science > Q Science (General)
Divisions: University Structure - Pre August 2011 > National Oceanography Centre (NERC)
ePrint ID: 63462
Date Deposited: 29 Jan 2009
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 18:45
Contact Email Address: bag@noc.soton.ac.uk
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/63462

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