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Comparison of phosphate uptake rates by the smallest plastidic and aplastidic protists in the North Atlantic subtropical gyre

Comparison of phosphate uptake rates by the smallest plastidic and aplastidic protists in the North Atlantic subtropical gyre
Comparison of phosphate uptake rates by the smallest plastidic and aplastidic protists in the North Atlantic subtropical gyre
The smallest phototrophic protists (<3 ?m) are important primary producers in oligotrophic subtropical gyres – the Earth's largest ecosystems. In order to elucidate how these protists meet their inorganic nutrient requirements, we compared the phosphate uptake rates of plastidic and aplastidic protists in the phosphate-depleted subtropical and tropical North Atlantic (4–29°N) using a combination of radiotracers and flow cytometric sorting on two Atlantic Meridional Transect cruises. Plastidic protists were divided into two groups according to their size (<2 and 2–3 ?m). Both groups of plastidic protists showed higher phosphate uptake rates per cell than the aplastidic protists. Although the phosphate uptake rates of protist cells were on average seven times (P<0.001) higher than those of bacterioplankton, the biomass-specific phosphate uptake rates of protists were one fourth to one twentieth of an average bacterioplankton cell. The unsustainably low biomass-specific phosphate uptake by both plastidic and aplastidic protists suggests the existence of a common alternative means of phosphorus acquisition – predation on phosphorus-rich bacterioplankton cells.
phosphorus limitation, protozoa, picophytoplankton, radiotracer, picoeukaryotes, bacterioplankton
327-335
Hartmann, Manuela
5b175765-fde7-40dc-bcd6-83248285ef86
Grob, Carolina
fa3203be-7eb7-4f75-8fb9-9d9492f6f320
Scanlan, David J.
748c7970-2e58-4a46-82ad-0138f41bd713
Martin, Adrian P.
9d0d480d-9b3c-44c2-aafe-bb980ed98a6d
Burkill, Peter H.
511b68df-1664-418f-baa1-b1075f1e1fed
Zubkov, Mikhail V.
b1dfb3a0-bcff-430c-9031-358a22b50743
Hartmann, Manuela
5b175765-fde7-40dc-bcd6-83248285ef86
Grob, Carolina
fa3203be-7eb7-4f75-8fb9-9d9492f6f320
Scanlan, David J.
748c7970-2e58-4a46-82ad-0138f41bd713
Martin, Adrian P.
9d0d480d-9b3c-44c2-aafe-bb980ed98a6d
Burkill, Peter H.
511b68df-1664-418f-baa1-b1075f1e1fed
Zubkov, Mikhail V.
b1dfb3a0-bcff-430c-9031-358a22b50743

Hartmann, Manuela, Grob, Carolina, Scanlan, David J., Martin, Adrian P., Burkill, Peter H. and Zubkov, Mikhail V. (2011) Comparison of phosphate uptake rates by the smallest plastidic and aplastidic protists in the North Atlantic subtropical gyre. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 78 (2), 327-335. (doi:10.1111/j.1574-6941.2011.01160.x).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The smallest phototrophic protists (<3 ?m) are important primary producers in oligotrophic subtropical gyres – the Earth's largest ecosystems. In order to elucidate how these protists meet their inorganic nutrient requirements, we compared the phosphate uptake rates of plastidic and aplastidic protists in the phosphate-depleted subtropical and tropical North Atlantic (4–29°N) using a combination of radiotracers and flow cytometric sorting on two Atlantic Meridional Transect cruises. Plastidic protists were divided into two groups according to their size (<2 and 2–3 ?m). Both groups of plastidic protists showed higher phosphate uptake rates per cell than the aplastidic protists. Although the phosphate uptake rates of protist cells were on average seven times (P<0.001) higher than those of bacterioplankton, the biomass-specific phosphate uptake rates of protists were one fourth to one twentieth of an average bacterioplankton cell. The unsustainably low biomass-specific phosphate uptake by both plastidic and aplastidic protists suggests the existence of a common alternative means of phosphorus acquisition – predation on phosphorus-rich bacterioplankton cells.

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Published date: November 2011
Keywords: phosphorus limitation, protozoa, picophytoplankton, radiotracer, picoeukaryotes, bacterioplankton
Organisations: Marine Biogeochemistry

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Local EPrints ID: 203803
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/203803
PURE UUID: d0b69888-f8a9-477b-aa2f-75a567407837

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Date deposited: 18 Nov 2011 16:17
Last modified: 16 Jul 2019 23:18

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