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Coccolithovirus facilitation of carbon export in the North Atlantic

Coccolithovirus facilitation of carbon export in the North Atlantic
Coccolithovirus facilitation of carbon export in the North Atlantic
Marine phytoplankton account for approximately half of global primary productivity, making their fate an important driver of the marine carbon cycle. Viruses are thought to recycle more than one-quarter of oceanic photosynthetically fixed organic carbon, which can stimulate nutrient regeneration, primary production and upper ocean respiration via lytic infection and the ‘virus shunt’. Ultimately, this limits the trophic transfer of carbon and energy to both higher food webs and the deep ocean. Using imagery taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) onboard the Aqua satellite, along with a suite of diagnostic lipid- and gene-based molecular biomarkers, in situ optical sensors and sediment traps, we show that Coccolithovirus infections of mesoscale (~100 km) Emiliania huxleyi blooms in the North Atlantic are coupled with particle aggregation, high zooplankton grazing and greater downward vertical fluxes of both particulate organic and particulate inorganic carbon from the upper mixed layer. Our analyses captured blooms in different phases of infection (early, late and post) and revealed the highest export flux in ‘early-infected blooms’ with sinking particles being disproportionately enriched with infected cells and subsequently remineralized at depth in the mesopelagic. Our findings reveal viral infection as a previously unrecognized ecosystem process enhancing biological pump efficiency.
1-11
Laber, Christien P.
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Hunter, Jonathan E.
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Carvalho, Filipa
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Collins, James R.
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Hunter, Elias J.
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Schieler, Brittany M.
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Boss, Emmanuel
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More, Kuldeep
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Frada, Miguel
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Thamatrakoln, Kimberlee
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Brown, Christopher M.
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Haramaty, Liti
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Ossolinski, Justin
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Fredricks, Helen
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Nissimov, Jozef I.
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Vandzura, Rebecca
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Sheyn, Uri
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Lehahn, Yoav
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Chant, Robert J.
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Martins, Ana M.
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Coolen, Marco J.L.
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Vardi, Assaf
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Ditullio, Giacomo R.
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Van Mooy, Benjamin A.S.
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Bidle, Kay D.
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Laber, Christien P.
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Hunter, Jonathan E.
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Carvalho, Filipa
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Collins, James R.
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Hunter, Elias J.
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Schieler, Brittany M.
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Boss, Emmanuel
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More, Kuldeep
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Frada, Miguel
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Thamatrakoln, Kimberlee
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Brown, Christopher M.
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Haramaty, Liti
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Ossolinski, Justin
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Fredricks, Helen
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Nissimov, Jozef I.
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Vandzura, Rebecca
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Sheyn, Uri
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Lehahn, Yoav
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Chant, Robert J.
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Martins, Ana M.
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Coolen, Marco J.L.
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Vardi, Assaf
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Ditullio, Giacomo R.
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Van Mooy, Benjamin A.S.
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Bidle, Kay D.
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Laber, Christien P., Hunter, Jonathan E., Carvalho, Filipa, Collins, James R., Hunter, Elias J., Schieler, Brittany M., Boss, Emmanuel, More, Kuldeep, Frada, Miguel, Thamatrakoln, Kimberlee, Brown, Christopher M., Haramaty, Liti, Ossolinski, Justin, Fredricks, Helen, Nissimov, Jozef I., Vandzura, Rebecca, Sheyn, Uri, Lehahn, Yoav, Chant, Robert J., Martins, Ana M., Coolen, Marco J.L., Vardi, Assaf, Ditullio, Giacomo R., Van Mooy, Benjamin A.S. and Bidle, Kay D. (2018) Coccolithovirus facilitation of carbon export in the North Atlantic. Nature Microbiology, 1-11. (doi:10.1038/s41564-018-0128-4).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Marine phytoplankton account for approximately half of global primary productivity, making their fate an important driver of the marine carbon cycle. Viruses are thought to recycle more than one-quarter of oceanic photosynthetically fixed organic carbon, which can stimulate nutrient regeneration, primary production and upper ocean respiration via lytic infection and the ‘virus shunt’. Ultimately, this limits the trophic transfer of carbon and energy to both higher food webs and the deep ocean. Using imagery taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) onboard the Aqua satellite, along with a suite of diagnostic lipid- and gene-based molecular biomarkers, in situ optical sensors and sediment traps, we show that Coccolithovirus infections of mesoscale (~100 km) Emiliania huxleyi blooms in the North Atlantic are coupled with particle aggregation, high zooplankton grazing and greater downward vertical fluxes of both particulate organic and particulate inorganic carbon from the upper mixed layer. Our analyses captured blooms in different phases of infection (early, late and post) and revealed the highest export flux in ‘early-infected blooms’ with sinking particles being disproportionately enriched with infected cells and subsequently remineralized at depth in the mesopelagic. Our findings reveal viral infection as a previously unrecognized ecosystem process enhancing biological pump efficiency.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 9 February 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 12 March 2018

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 421605
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/421605
PURE UUID: 2a9499d5-09ed-4ef9-a786-b51225415de3

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Date deposited: 15 Jun 2018 16:31
Last modified: 27 Apr 2022 12:23

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Contributors

Author: Christien P. Laber
Author: Jonathan E. Hunter
Author: Filipa Carvalho
Author: James R. Collins
Author: Elias J. Hunter
Author: Brittany M. Schieler
Author: Emmanuel Boss
Author: Kuldeep More
Author: Miguel Frada
Author: Kimberlee Thamatrakoln
Author: Christopher M. Brown
Author: Liti Haramaty
Author: Justin Ossolinski
Author: Helen Fredricks
Author: Jozef I. Nissimov
Author: Rebecca Vandzura
Author: Uri Sheyn
Author: Yoav Lehahn
Author: Robert J. Chant
Author: Ana M. Martins
Author: Marco J.L. Coolen
Author: Assaf Vardi
Author: Giacomo R. Ditullio
Author: Benjamin A.S. Van Mooy
Author: Kay D. Bidle

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