Posts Tagged 'growth'

Interactive effects of elevated CO2 concentration and light on the picophytoplankton Synechococcus

Synechococcus is a major contributor to the primary production in tropic and subtropical oceans worldwide. Responses of this picophytoplankton to changing light and CO2 levels is of general concern to understand its ecophysiology in the context of ocean global changes. We grew Synechococcus sp. (WH7803), originally isolated from subtropic North Atlantic Ocean, under different PAR levels for about 15 generations and examined its growth, photochemical performance and the response of these parameters to elevated CO2 (1,000 μatm). The specific growth rate increased from 6 μmol m–2 s–1 to reach a maximum (0.547 ± 0.026) at 25 μmol m–2 s–1, and then became inhibited at PAR levels over 50 μmol m–2 s–1, with light use efficiency (α) and photoinhibition coefficient (β) being 0.093 and 0.002, respectively. When the cells were grown at ambient and elevated CO2 concentration (400 vs. 1,000 μatm), the high-CO2 grown cells showed significantly enhanced rates of electron transport and quantum yield as well as significant increase in specific growth rate at the limiting and inhibiting PAR levels. While the electron transport rate significantly increased at the elevated CO2 concentration under all tested light levels, the specific growth did not exhibit significant changes under the optimal growth light condition. Our results indicate that Synechococcus WH7803 grew faster under the ocean acidification (OA) treatment induced by CO2 enrichment only under limiting and inhibiting light levels, indicating the interactive effects and implying that the picophytoplankton respond differentially at different depths while exposing changing light conditions.

Continue reading ‘Interactive effects of elevated CO2 concentration and light on the picophytoplankton Synechococcus’

Physiological responses of Skeletonema costatum to the interactions of seawater acidification and the combination of photoperiod and temperature (update)

Ocean acidification (OA), which is a major environmental change caused by increasing atmospheric CO2, has considerable influences on marine phytoplankton. But few studies have investigated interactions of OA and seasonal changes in temperature and photoperiod on marine diatoms. In the present study, a marine diatom Skeletonema costatum was cultured under two different CO2 levels (LC, 400 µatm; HC, 1000 µatm) and three different combinations of temperature and photoperiod length (8:16 L:D with 5 C, 12:12 L:D with 15 C, 16:8 L:D with 25 C), simulating different seasons in typical temperate oceans, to investigate the combined effects of these factors. The results showed that specific growth rate of S. costatum increased with increasing temperature and day length. However, OA showed contrasting effects on growth and photosynthesis under different combinations of temperature and day length: while positive effects of OA were observed under spring and autumn conditions, it significantly decreased growth (11 %) and photosynthesis (21 %) in winter. In addition, OA alleviated the negative effect of low temperature and short day length on the abundance of RbcL and key photosystem II (PSII) proteins (D1 and D2). These data indicated that future ocean acidification may show differential effects on diatoms in different clusters of other factors.

Continue reading ‘Physiological responses of Skeletonema costatum to the interactions of seawater acidification and the combination of photoperiod and temperature (update)’

Climate change mitigation effects: how do potential CO2 leaks from a sub-seabed storage site in the Norwegian Sea affect Astarte sp. bivalves?

Highlights

  • Acidification and recovery were assessed with high-pressure bioassays.
  • No mortality was reported for Astarte sp. for a pH 7.0 scenario.
  • Normal growth of shell length was recorded after CO2 exposure and a recovery period.

Abstract

Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is one of the most promising mitigation strategies for reducing the emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere and may substantially help to decelerate global warming. There is an increasing demand for CCS sites. Nevertheless, there is a lack of knowledge of the environmental risk associated with potential leakage of CO2 from the storage sites; and even more, what happens when the seepage stops. Can the environment return to the initial equilibrium? Potential effects on native macrofauna were studied under a scenario of a 50-day CO2 leakage, and the subsequent leak closure. To accomplish the objective, Trondheim Fjord sediments and clams were exposed to an acidified environment (pH 6.9) at 29 atm for 7 weeks followed by a 14-day recovery at normal seawater conditions (pH 8.0, 29 atm). Growth and survival of clams exposed to pressure (29 atm) and reduced pH (6.9) did not significantly differ from control clams kept at 1 atm in natural seawater. Furthermore, bioaccumulation of elements in the soft tissue of clams did not register significant variations for most of the analysed elements (Cd, Cr, Pb, and Ti), while other elements (As, Cu, Fe, Ni) had decreasing concentrations in tissues under acidified conditions in contrast to Na and Mg, which registered an uptake (Ku) of 111 and 9.92 μg g−1dw d−1, respectively. This Ku may be altered due to the stress induced by acidification; and the element concentration being released from sediments was not highly affected at that pH. Therefore, a 1 unit drop in pH at the seafloor for several weeks does not appear to pose a risk for the clams.

Continue reading ‘Climate change mitigation effects: how do potential CO2 leaks from a sub-seabed storage site in the Norwegian Sea affect Astarte sp. bivalves?’

Community responses of intertidal foraminifera to pH variations: a culture experiment with propagules

Calcifying organisms such as benthic foraminifera are susceptible to changes in ocean pH and alkalinity. Responses to these changes include variations in mortality, calcification rates or assemblage composition, which have been observed in field and experimental studies. Here we applied a growth experiment with benthic foraminiferal propagules under different pH conditions to gather insights into the effect of pH on the composition of grown assemblages. A homogeneous propagule assemblage from a local mudflat in Corfu Island (Greece) was exposed to a range of pH conditions (6.5, 7.2, 7.8 and 8.5) for 5 weeks. In a second experiment, the assemblages were first exposed to low and subsequently to high conditions for a total of 8 weeks. After termination of the experiments, we recorded high survivability and growth throughout the treatments. Analysis of the assemblage composition of the first experiments revealed a shift from porcelaneous dominated taxa in the higher pH treatments to an assemblage with higher numbers of agglutinated taxa in the lower pH treatments. Soft-shelled monothalamous species were common throughout. The second experiment revealed assemblages that were significantly dominated by porcelaneous taxa with monothalamous taxa being almost absent. The results of this study are congruent with other observations on changing assemblage compositions with changing pH from both laboratory and field studies. The fast response of the assemblages through activation of potentially dormant propagules adds insights into the mechanisms behind seasonal composition changes in naturally variable environments such as river estuaries. They also shed new light on possible effects of continuous decreases in ocean pH on shallow-water foraminiferal assemblages in future.

Continue reading ‘Community responses of intertidal foraminifera to pH variations: a culture experiment with propagules’

Ocean acidification interacts with growth light to suppress CO2 acquisition efficiency and enhance mitochondrial respiration in a coastal diatom

Highlights

  • Ocean acidification (OA) enhances growth of Thalassiosira weissflogii only at limiting low light levels.
  • The energy saved from down-regulation of CCMs under OA rather than “CO2 fertilization aids in the enhancement under low levels of light energy supply.
  • Coastal diatoms can benefit from OA, especially under cloudy weather or conditions of low solar exposures.

Abstract

Diatom responses to ocean acidification have been documented with variable and controversial results. We grew the coastal diatom Thalassiosira weissflogii under 410 (LC, pH 8.13) vs 1000 μatm (HC, pH 7.83) pCO2 and at different levels of light (80, 140, 220 μmol photons m−2 s−1), and found that light level alters physiological responses to OA. CO2 concentrating mechanisms (CCMs) were down-regulated in the HC-grown cells across all the light levels, as reflected by lowered activity of the periplasmic carbonic anhydrase and decreased photosynthetic affinity for CO2 or dissolved inorganic carbon. The specific growth rate was, however, enhanced significantly by 9.2% only at the limiting low light level. These results indicate that rather than CO2 “fertilization”, the energy saved from down-regulation of CCMs promoted the growth rate of the diatom when light availability is low, in parallel with enhanced respiration under OA to cope with the acidic stress by providing extra energy.

Continue reading ‘Ocean acidification interacts with growth light to suppress CO2 acquisition efficiency and enhance mitochondrial respiration in a coastal diatom’

Effect of elevated pCO2 on thermal performance of Chattonella marina and Chattonella ovata (Raphidophyceae)

Ocean acidification and warming, identified as environmental concerns likely to be affected by climate change, are crucial determinants of algal growth. The ichthyotoxic raphidophytes Chattonella species are responsible for huge economic losses and environmental impact worldwide. In this study, we investigated the impact of CO2 on the thermal performance curves (TPCs) of Chattonella marina and Chattonella ovata grown under temperatures ranging from 13 to 34°C under ambient pCO2 (350 μatm) and elevated pCO2 (950 μatm). TPCs were comparable between the species or even between pCO2 levels. With the exception of the critical thermal minimum (CTmin) for C. ovataCTmin for C. marina and the thermal optimum (Topt) and critical thermal maximum (CTmax) for both species did not change with elevation of pCO2 levels. While CO2 enrichment increased the maximum photosynthetic rates (Pmax) up to 125% at the Topt of 30°C, specific growth rates were not significantly different under elevated pCO2 for the two species. Overall, C. ovata is likely to benefit from climate change, potentially widening its range of thermal tolerance limit in highly acidic waters and contributing to prolonged phenology of future phytoplankton assemblages in coastal waters.

Continue reading ‘Effect of elevated pCO2 on thermal performance of Chattonella marina and Chattonella ovata (Raphidophyceae)’

Integrated RNA-seq and proteomic studies reveal resource reallocation towards energy metabolism and defense in Skeletonema marinoi in response to CO2 increase

Rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations are causing ocean acidification (OA) with significant consequences for marine organisms. Because CO2 is essential for photosynthesis, the effect of elevated CO2 on phytoplankton is more complex and the mechanism is poorly understood. Here we applied RNA-seq and iTRAQ proteomics to investigate the impacts of CO2 increase (from ∼400 to 1000 ppm) on the temperate coastal marine diatom Skeletonema marinoi. We identified 32,389 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and 1,826 differentially expressed proteins (DEPs) from elevated CO2 conditions, accounting for 48.5% of total genes and 25.9% of total proteins we detected, respectively. Elevated pCO2 significantly inhibited the growth of Smarinoi, and the ‘omic’ data suggested that this might be due to compromised photosynthesis in the chloroplast and raised mitochondrial energy metabolism. Furthermore, many genes/proteins associated with nitrogen metabolism, transcriptional regulation, and translational regulation were markedly up-regulated, suggesting enhanced protein synthesis. In addition, Smarinoi exhibited higher capacity of ROS production and resistance to oxidative stress. Overall, elevated pCO2 seems to repress photosynthesis and growth of Smarinoi, and through massive gene expression reconfiguration induce cells to increase investment in protein synthesis, energy metabolism and antioxidative stress defense, likely to maintain pH homeostasis and population survival. This survival strategy may deprive this usually dominant diatom in temperate coastal waters of its competitive advantages in acidified environments.

Continue reading ‘Integrated RNA-seq and proteomic studies reveal resource reallocation towards energy metabolism and defense in Skeletonema marinoi in response to CO2 increase’

Ocean acidification and warming lead to increased growth and altered chloroplast morphology in the thermo-tolerant alga Symbiochlorum hainanensis

Ocean acidification and warming affect the growth and predominance of algae. However, the effects of ocean acidification and warming on the growth and gene transcription of thermo-tolerant algae are poorly understood. Here we determined the effects of elevated temperature (H) and acidification (A) on a recently discovered coral-associated thermo-tolerant alga Symbiochlorum hainanensis by culturing it under two temperature settings (26.0 and 32.0°C) crossed with two pH levels (8.16 and 7.81). The results showed that the growth of S. hainanensis was positively affected by H, A, and the combined treatment (AH). However, no superimposition effect of H and A on the growth of S. hainanensis was observed under AH. The analysis of chlorophyll fluorescence, pigment content, and subcellular morphology indicated that the chloroplast morphogenesis (enlargement) along with the increase of chlorophyll fluorescence and pigment content of S. hainanensis might be a universal mechanism for promoting the growth of S. hainanensis. Transcriptomic profiles revealed the effect of elevated temperature on the response of S. hainanensis to acidification involved in the down-regulation of photosynthesis- and carbohydrate metabolism-related genes but not the up-regulation of genes related to antioxidant and ubiquitination processes. Overall, this study firstly reports the growth, morphology, and molecular response of the thermo-tolerant alga S. hainanensis to future climate changes, suggesting the predominance of S. hainanensis in its associated corals and/or coral reefs in the future.

Continue reading ‘Ocean acidification and warming lead to increased growth and altered chloroplast morphology in the thermo-tolerant alga Symbiochlorum hainanensis’

Ocean-related global change alters lipid biomarker production in common marine phytoplankton (update)

Lipids, in their function as trophic markers in food webs and organic matter source indicators in the water column and sediments, provide a tool for reconstructing the complexity of global change effects on aquatic ecosystems. It remains unclear how ongoing changes in multiple environmental drivers affect the production of key lipid biomarkers in marine phytoplankton. Here, we tested the responses of sterols, alkenones and fatty acids (FAs) in the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum, the cryptophyte Rhodomonas sp. and the haptophyte Emiliania huxleyi under a full-factorial combination of three temperatures (12, 18 and 24 C), three N : P supply ratios (molar ratios 10 : 1, 24 : 1 and 63 : 1) and two pCO2 levels (560 and 2400 µatm) in semicontinuous culturing experiments. Overall, N and P deficiency had a stronger effect on per-cell contents of sterols, alkenones and FAs than warming and enhanced pCO2. Specifically, P deficiency caused an overall increase in biomarker production in most cases, while N deficiency, warming and high pCO2 caused nonsystematic changes. Under future ocean scenarios, we predict an overall decrease in carbon-normalized contents of sterols and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) in E. huxleyi and P. tricornutum and a decrease in sterols but an increase in PUFAs in Rhodomonas sp. Variable contents of lipid biomarkers indicate a diverse carbon allocation between marine phytoplankton species in response to changing environments. Thus, it is necessary to consider the changes in key lipids and their consequences for food-web dynamics and biogeochemical cycles, when predicting the influence of global change on marine ecosystems.

Continue reading ‘Ocean-related global change alters lipid biomarker production in common marine phytoplankton (update)’

Impact of temperature increase and acidification on growth and the reproductive potential of the clam Ruditapes philippinarum using DEB

Highlights

  • A simulation model based on DEB theory was parameterized for the Manila clam.
  • The pH forecast in 2100 will limit the growth of Manila clam.
  • The temperature forecast in 2100 enhances the reproductive potential of Manila clam.

Abstract

We built a simulation model based on Dynamic Energy Budget theory (DEB) to assess the growth and reproductive potential of the Manila clam Ruditapes philippinarum under different temperature and pH conditions, based on environmental values forecasted for the end of the 21st c. under climate change scenarios. The parameters of the DEB model were calibrated with the results of seasonal growth experiments under two levels of temperature (ambient and plus 2–3 °C) and three levels of pH (8.1 used as control and 7.7 and 7.3 representing acidification). The results showed that R. philippinarum is expected to have moderate growth in length or individual body mass (ultimate length and body weight would be larger than current values by 2–3%) when taking into account only the effect of temperature increase. However, acidification is likely to have a deleterious effect on growth, with a decrease of 2–5% length or body weight under the pH value of 7.7 forecasted for the end of the 21st c, or 10–15% under a more extreme scenario (pH = 7.3). However, the aggregated reproductive potential, integrated along a lifetime of 10 years, is likely to increase by 30% with temperature increase. Decreasing pH would impact negatively on reproductive potential, but in all simulations under warmer conditions, reproductive potential values were higher than current, suggesting that temperature increase would compensate losses due to acidification. The results are discussed in relation to their possible impact on aquaculture and fisheries of this important commercial bivalve.

Continue reading ‘Impact of temperature increase and acidification on growth and the reproductive potential of the clam Ruditapes philippinarum using DEB’

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