Publication
Title
Organic surface coating on Coccolithophores - **Emiliania huxleyi**: its determination and implication in the marine carbon cycle
Author
Abstract
Most of the marine precipitation of CaCO3 is due to the biological activities of planktonic and benthic organisms in waters largely oversaturated with respect to calcium carbonates. This saturation state is expected to decrease as CO2 increases in seawater. A conventional view in oceanography suggests that calcium carbonates organisms are preserved in oversaturated waters and dissolve only below the lysocline. However, it has be postulated that a fraction of the CaCO3 precipitated biogenically could dissolve in oversaturated waters due to the formation of microenvironments in which respired CO2 decreases the saturation state of seawater (Ù) in the vicinity of CaCO3 crystals. In the present study, cells of the coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi obtained from laboratory cultures and field samples collected in the Gulf of Biscay, were examined using variable-energy electron-probe microanalysis, to determine the presence and thickness of their organic coating. In addition, a new approach for transferring micrometer-sized particles from a filter onto transmission electron microscope grids using manipulators was used to investigate individual coccolithophores. The dry thickness of an organic coating over the coccolithophore surface was found to range between 280 and 350 nm. The resemblance of this coating to the carbohydrates produced and released by the cell is discussed as well as their potential for constituting a microenvironment that hosts bacteria. The properties of this organic coating and its role in the preservation/dissolution and export of biogenic carbonates in the water column are one of the major issues of carbonate geochemistry.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Microchemical journal. - New York
Publication
New York : 2009
ISSN
0026-265X
0026-265X
Volume/pages
91:2(2009), p. 266-271
ISI
000264238000020
Full text (Publishers DOI)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identification
Creation 05.03.2009
Last edited 16.05.2017
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