Posts Tagged 'labratory'

Acclimation history modulates effect size of calcareous algae (Halimeda opuntia) to herbicide exposure under future climate scenarios


•Calcifying algae were exposed to herbicide and future climate scenarios combined.

•Half of the algae were given long acclimation to future climate-change conditions.

•Experimental effects were exaggerated for algae that were not acclimated.

•Still, herbicide effects on acclimated algae stronger in future climate conditions

•Results show the need of climate-adjusted thresholds for water quality guidelines.


Tropical marine habitat-builders such as calcifying green algae can be susceptible to climate change (warming and acidification). This study evaluated the cumulative effects of ocean warming (OW), ocean acidification (OA) and the herbicide diuron on the calcifying green algae Halimeda opuntia. We also assessed the influence of acclimation history to experimental climate change conditions on physiological responses. H. opuntia were exposed for 15 days to orthogonal combinations of three climate scenarios [ambient (28 °C, pCO2 = 378 ppm), 2050 (29 °C, pCO2 = 567 ppm) and 2100 (30 °C, pCO2 = 721 ppm)] and to six diuron concentrations (up to 29 μg L−1). Half of the H. opuntia had been acclimated for eight months to the climate scenarios in a mesocosm approach, while the remaining half were not pre-acclimated, as is current practice in most experiments. Climate effects on quantum yield (ΔF/Fm′), photosynthesis and calcification in future climate scenarios were significantly stronger (by −24, −46 and +26%, respectively) in non-acclimated algae, suggesting experimental bias may exaggerate effects in organisms not appropriately acclimated to future-climate conditions. Thus, full analysis was done on acclimated plants only. Interactive effects of future climate scenarios and diuron were observed for ΔF/Fm′, while the detrimental effects of climate and diuron on net photosynthesis and total antioxidant capacity (TAC) were additive. Calcification-related enzymes were negatively affected only by diuron, with inhibition of Ca-ATPase and upregulation of carbonic anhydrase. The combined and consistent physiological and biochemical evidence of negative impacts (across six indicators) of both herbicide and future-climate conditions on the health of H. opuntia highlights the need to address both climate change and water quality. Guideline values for contaminants may also need to be lowered considering ‘climate adjusted thresholds’. Importantly, this study highlights the value of applying substantial future climate acclimation periods in experimental studies to avoid exaggerated organism responses to OW and OA.

Continue reading ‘Acclimation history modulates effect size of calcareous algae (Halimeda opuntia) to herbicide exposure under future climate scenarios’

Physiological responses of three temperate coralline algae from contrasting habitats to near-future ocean acidification

Coralline algae are major calcifiers of significant ecological importance in marine habitats but are among the most sensitive calcifying organisms to ocean acidification. The elevated pCO2 effects were examined in three coralline algal species living in contrasting habitats from intertidal to subtidal zones on the north-western coast of Brittany, France: (i) Corallina elongata, a branched alga found in tidal rock pools, (ii) Lithophyllum incrustans, a crustose coralline alga from the low intertidal zone, and (iii) Lithothamnion corallioides (maerl), a free-living form inhabiting the subtidal zone. Metabolic rates were assessed on specimens grown for one month at varying pCO2: 380 (current pCO2), 550, 750 and 1000 μatm (elevated pCO2). There was no pCO2 effect on gross production in C. elongata and L. incrustans but L. incrustans respiration strongly increased with elevated pCO2. L. corallioides gross production slightly increased at 1000 μatm, while respiration remained unaffected. Calcification rates decreased with pCO2 in L. incrustans (both in the light and dark) and L. corallioides (only in the light), while C. elongata calcification was unaffected. This was consistent with the lower skeletal mMg/Ca ratio of C. elongata (0.17) relative to the two other species (0.20). L. incrustans had a higher occurrence of bleaching that increased with increasing pCO2. pCO2 could indirectly impact this coralline species physiology making them more sensitive to other stresses such as diseases or pathogens. These results underlined that the physiological response of coralline algae to near-future ocean acidification is species-specific and that species experiencing naturally strong pH variations were not necessarily more resistant to elevated pCO2 than species from more stable environment.

Continue reading ‘Physiological responses of three temperate coralline algae from contrasting habitats to near-future ocean acidification’

Subscribe to the RSS feed

Powered by FeedBurner

Follow AnneMarin on Twitter

Blog Stats

  • 1,358,402 hits


Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

OUP book