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See detailProductivity and temperature as drivers of seasonal and spatial variations of dissolved methane in the Southern Bight of the North Sea
Borges, Alberto ULiege; Royer, Colin ULiege; Lapeyra Martin, Jon et al

Poster (2020, May 04)

Dissolved CH4 concentrations in the Belgian coastal zone (BCZ) (North Sea) ranged between 1607 nmol L-1 near-shore and 4 nmol L-1 off-shore during field cruises in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. Spatial ... [more ▼]

Dissolved CH4 concentrations in the Belgian coastal zone (BCZ) (North Sea) ranged between 1607 nmol L-1 near-shore and 4 nmol L-1 off-shore during field cruises in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. Spatial variations of CH4 were related to sediment organic matter (OM) content and gassy sediments. In near-shore stations with fine sand or muddy sediments, the CH4 seasonal cycle followed water temperature, suggesting methanogenesis control by temperature in these OM rich sediments. In off-shore stations with permeable sediments, the CH4 seasonal cycle showed a yearly peak following the Chlorophyll-a spring peak, suggesting that in these OM poor sediments, methanogenesis depended on freshly produced OM delivery. The annual average CH4 emission was 126 mmol m-2 yr-1 in the most near-shore stations (~4 km from the coast) and 28 mmol m-2 yr-1 in the most off-shore stations (~23 km from the coast), 1,260 to 280 times higher than the open ocean average value (0.1 mmol m-2 yr-1). The strong control of CH4 by sediment OM content and by temperature suggests that marine coastal CH4 emissions, in particular in shallow areas, should respond to future eutrophication and warming of climate. This is supported by the comparison of CH4 concentrations at five stations obtained in March 1990 and 2016, showing a decreasing trend consistent with alleviation of eutrophication in the area. This is also supported by the response to the European heatwave of 2018 that led to record-breaking temperatures in many countries across northern and central Europe. Average seawater temperature in July was 2.5°C higher than the mean from 2004 to 2017 for same month in the BCZ. The mean dissolved CH4 concentration in surface waters in July 2018 (338 nmol L-1) was three times higher than in July 2016 (110 nmol L-1), and an extremely high dissolved CH4 concentration in surface waters (1,607 nmol L-1) was observed at one near-shore station. The high dissolved CH4 concentrations in surface waters in the BCZ in July 2018 seemed to be due to a combination of enhancement of methanogenesis and of release of CH4 from gassy sediments, both most likely related to warmer conditions. The emission of CH4 from the BCZ to the atmosphere was higher in 2018 compared to 2016 by 57% in July (599 versus 382 µmol m-2 d-1) and by 37% at annual scale (221 versus 161 µmol m-2 d-1). The European heatwave of 2018 seems to have led to a major increase of CH4 concentrations in surface waters and CH4 emissions to the atmosphere in the BCZ. [less ▲]

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See detailA 15-Month Survey of Dimethylsulfoniopropionate and Dimethylsulfoxide Content in Posidonia oceanica
Richir, Jonathan ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege; Engels, Guyliann et al

in Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution (2020), 7(510), 1-15

Posidonia oceanica is the only reported seagrass to produce significant amount of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP). It is also the largest known producer of DMSP among coastal and inter-tidal higher ... [more ▼]

Posidonia oceanica is the only reported seagrass to produce significant amount of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP). It is also the largest known producer of DMSP among coastal and inter-tidal higher plants. Here, we studied (i) the weekly to seasonal variability and the depth variability of DMSP and its related compound dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) in P. oceanica leaves of a non-disturbed meadow in Corsica, France, (ii) the weekly to seasonal variability and the depth variability of DMSP to DMSO concentration to assess the potential of the DMSP:DMSO ratio as indicator of stress, and (iii) the relationships between DMSP, DMSO, and the DMSP:DMSO ratio with potential explanatory variables such as light, temperature, photosynthetic activity (effective quantum yield of photosystem II), and leaf size. The overall average concentrations of organosulfured compounds in P. oceanica leaves were 130 ± 39 μmol.g−1fw for DMSP and 4.9 ± 2.1 μmol.g−1fw for DMSO. Concentrations of DMSP and DMSO in P. oceanica were overall distinctly higher and exhibited a wider range of variations than other marine primary producers such as Spartina alterniflora, phytoplankton communities, epilithic Cyanobacteria and macroalgae. Concentrations of both DMSP and DMSO in P. oceanica leaves decreased from a maximum in autumn to a minimum in summer; they changed little with depth. Potential explanatory variables except the leaf size, i.e., the leaf age were little or not related to measured concentrations. To explain the seasonal pattern of decreasing concentrations with leaf aging, we hypothesized two putative protection functions of DMSP in young leaves: antioxidant against reactive oxygen species and predator-deterrent. The similar variation of the two molecule concentrations over time and with depth suggested that DMSO content in P. oceanica leaves results from oxidation of DMSP. The DMSP:DMSO ratio remained constant around a mean value of 29.2 ± 9.0 μmol:μmol for the non-disturbed harvested meadow regardless of the time of the year, the depth or the leaf size. As suggested for the salt march plant S. alterniflora, we hypothesized the DMSP:DMSO ratio could be considered as indicator of stress in seagrasses exposed to environmental or anthropogenic stressors. More research would now be needed to confirm the functions of DMSP and DMSO in seagrasses and how the DMSP:DMSO ratio will vary under various disturbances. [less ▲]

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See detailSea ice CO2 dynamics across seasons: impact of processes at the interfaces
Van der Linden, Fanny ULiege; Tison, Jean-Louis; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

in Journal of Geophysical Research. Oceans (2020)

Winter to summer CO2 dynamics within landfast sea ice in McMurdo Sound (Antarctica) were investigated using bulk ice pCO2 measurements, air-snow-ice CO2 fluxes, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), total ... [more ▼]

Winter to summer CO2 dynamics within landfast sea ice in McMurdo Sound (Antarctica) were investigated using bulk ice pCO2 measurements, air-snow-ice CO2 fluxes, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), total alkalinity (TA) and ikaite saturation state. Our results suggest depth-dependent biotic and abiotic controls that led us to discriminate the ice column in three layers. At the surface, winter pCO2 supersaturation drove CO2 release to the atmosphere while spring-summer pCO2 undersaturation led to CO2 uptake most of the time. CO2 fluxes showed a diel pattern superimposed upon this seasonal pattern which was potentially assigned to either ice skin freeze-thaw cycles or diel changes in net community production. The pCO2 decrease across the season was driven by physical processes, mainly independent of the autotrophic and heterotrophic phases encountered in the ice interior. Bottom sea ice was characterized by a massive biomass build-up counterintuitively associated with transient heterotrophic activity and nitrate plus nitrite accumulation. This inconsistency is likely related to the formation of a biofilm. This biofilm hosts both autotrophic and heterotrophic activities at the bottom of the ice during spring and may promote calcium carbonate precipitation. [less ▲]

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See detailPosidonia oceanica, a top producer of dimethylsulfoniopropionate and dimethylsulfoxide
Richir, Jonathan ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege; Engels, Guyliann et al

in CIESM WORKSHOP MONOGRAPHS (2019, October 10)

We studied the dynamic of dimethylsulfoniopropionate and its derivative dimethylsulfoxide in Posidonia oceanica. The annual average concentrations in leaves were 129 ± 39 μmol.g for DMSP and 5.0 ± 2.1 ... [more ▼]

We studied the dynamic of dimethylsulfoniopropionate and its derivative dimethylsulfoxide in Posidonia oceanica. The annual average concentrations in leaves were 129 ± 39 μmol.g for DMSP and 5.0 ± 2.1 μmol.g for DMSO. DMSP and DMSO concentrations decreased from a maximum in the fall to a minimum in the summer and were mainly correlated to the seagrass leaf size. The similar variation of the two molecule concentrations suggested that DMSO content results from oxidation of DMSP. The DMSP:DMSO ratio, considered as indicator of stress in Spartina alterniflora, remained constant around a mean value of 27.7 μmol:μmol. More research is now needed to investigate the functions of DMSP and DMSO in seagrasses, how the DMSP:DMSO ratio will vary under disturbance and whether it is useful as indicator of stress. [less ▲]

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See detailCO2 transfer in landfast sea ice: impact of processes at the interfaces
Van der Linden, Fanny ULiege; Moreau, Sébastien; Tison, Jean-Louis et al

Poster (2019, August)

Sea ice is a biome actively participating in the regional cycling of CO2 both as a source and a sink at different times of the year depending on ice physics, ice chemistry and ice trophic status ... [more ▼]

Sea ice is a biome actively participating in the regional cycling of CO2 both as a source and a sink at different times of the year depending on ice physics, ice chemistry and ice trophic status (autotrophic vs heterotrophic). The porous sea ice provides a dynamic habitat hosting diverse communities of microorganisms (algae, bacteria, heterotrophic protists, fungi and viruses), particularly concentrated at the bottom of the ice at McMurdo Sound (Antarctica). Bacterial and algal productions affect the CO2 dynamics by releasing or consuming CO2, which in turn impacts concentrations of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) and total alkalinity (TA) - key parameters to describe the ocean-sea ice-atmosphere CO2 fluxes. The balance between photosynthesis and respiration of both algae and bacteria, expressed as the net community production (NCP), determines the net trophic status of the ice. NCP relates directly to the biogenic contribution of sea ice to CO2 uptake or release. During the YROSIAE project, which took place at Cape Evans in McMurdo Sound from Nov. 2011 to Dec. 2012, we carried out the first long-term monitoring of pCO2 and CO2 fluxes at sea ice interfaces. The seasonal pattern of air-ice CO2 fluxes was consistent with pCO2 changes, i.e. brine pCO2 over-saturation during late winter (brine concentration of DIC and upward brine expulsion) leading to CO2 degassing, and under-saturation during spring (brine dilution and DIC depletion) leading to atmospheric CO2 uptake. However, diurnal cycles of air-snow-ice CO2 fluxes were superimposed on seasonal changes and appeared to be controlled by the diurnal cycle of basal snow and ice skin temperatures. Though the ice trophic status is likely to affect CO2 fluxes, it appeared that seasonal and diurnal changes at the sea ice surface were decoupled from the succession of autotrophic and heterotrophic phases observed in the ice interior. At the bottom of the ice, a large biomass build-up was associated with high remineralisation and heterotrophic activity. Such condition is likely due to the presence of a biofilm (microbial assemblages embedded in extracellular polymeric substances). The biofilm may further promote CaCO3 precipitation in parallel with an increase of salinity-normalized TA. Such sea ice system, where significant heterotrophic activity is maintained independently of the biomass build-up and which supports CaCO3 precipitation jointly with increasing alkalinity, challenges previous insights. [less ▲]

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See detailInter-annual variations over a decade of primary production of the seagrass Posidonia oceanica
Champenois, Willy ULiege; Borges, Alberto ULiege

in Limnology and Oceanography (2019), 64(1), 32-45

We acquired quasi-continuous measurements of community gross primary production (GPP) by mass balanceof O2 measured on a mooring, from August 2006 to October 2016 over a Posidonia oceanica meadow (10 m ... [more ▼]

We acquired quasi-continuous measurements of community gross primary production (GPP) by mass balanceof O2 measured on a mooring, from August 2006 to October 2016 over a Posidonia oceanica meadow (10 m depth) in the Bay of Revelleta (Corsica). Over the 2006–2016 period, annual GPP averaged 88 molO2 m−2 yr−1 and ranged from 61 to 108 molO2 m−2 yr−1 . The 2 yr with the lowest annual GPP (2007 and 2015) were characterized by a low occurrence of fall–winter storms, probably leading to the accumulation of leaf litter in fall and early winter; we hypothesize this might have led to occultation of benthic macro-algae. Among the other years, the inter-annual variability of GPP was related to changes during the February–August period, as GPP was repeatable among years during the September–January period. For the February–August period, inter-annual variations of GPP were correlated to chlorophyll a (Chl a), solar radiation and water temperature. Computed phytoplankton GPP corresponded to a small fraction of community GPP, so the relation between GPP and Chl a probably reflected inter-annual variations of a common driver that we hypothesize to be nutrient inputs. The correlation of GPP with solar radiation shows that light availability contributed to inter-annual variations of the development of P. oceanica. The positive relation between GPP and temperature was consistent with the fact that the observed temperatures in the Bay of Revelleta were during the study period within the comfort range for the growth of P. oceanica. [less ▲]

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See detailDetermination of dimethylsulfoniopropionate and dimethylsulfoxide in Posidonia oceanica leaf tissue
Champenois, Willy ULiege; Borges, Alberto ULiege

in MethodsX (2019), 6(0), 56-62

In order to investigate the possible use of the dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) ratio as a stress indicator of Posidonia oceanica a method for the determination of these ... [more ▼]

In order to investigate the possible use of the dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) ratio as a stress indicator of Posidonia oceanica a method for the determination of these quantities was developed for this type of material. The method relies on gas chromatography with headspace technique, instead of the purge-and-trap technique commonly used. The method allows the determination of both DMSP and DMSO on the same sample. This method allows to quantify DMSP, DMSO and DMSP:DMSO ratio for calibration curves with a coefficient of variation around 2% and a relative error around 2% and within the ranges natural variability of DMSP and DMSO in P. oceanica leaf tissue. Preliminary tests showed that DMSP in P. oceanica leaf tissue ranged from 20 to 200 mmol g 1 of fresh weight (FW) and 2 to 5 mmol gfw 1 for DMSO. The DMSP:DMSO ratio ranged from 2 to 40. The quantifications were conducted with different mixtures of DMSP and DMSO by measurements of DMSP and DMSO in the same sample of P. oceanica leaf tissue. [less ▲]

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See detailResponse of marine methane dissolved concentrations and emissions in the Southern North Sea to the European 2018 heatwave
Borges, Alberto ULiege; Royer, Colin ULiege; Lapeyra Martin, Jon et al

in Continental Shelf Research (2019), 190(104004), 1-8

During the European heatwave of 2018 that led to record-breaking temperatures in many countries across northern and central Europe, average seawater temperature in July was 2.5 °C higher than the mean ... [more ▼]

During the European heatwave of 2018 that led to record-breaking temperatures in many countries across northern and central Europe, average seawater temperature in July was 2.5 °C higher than the mean from 2004 to 2017 for same month in the Belgian coastal zone (BCZ) (Southern Bight of the North Sea). The mean dissolved CH4 concentration in surface waters in July 2018 (338 nmol L−1) was three times higher than in July 2016 (110 nmol L−1), and an extremely high dissolved CH4 concentration in surface waters (1607 nmol L−1) was observed at one near-shore station. The high dissolved CH4 concentrations in surface waters in the BCZ in July 2018 seemed to be due to a combination of enhancement of methanogenesis and of release of CH4 from gassy sediments, both most likely related to warmer conditions. The emission of CH4 from the BCZ to the atmosphere was higher in 2018 compared to 2016 by 57% in July (599 versus 382 μmol m−2 d−1) and by 37% at annual scale (221 versus 161 μmol m−2 d−1). The European heatwave of 2018 seems to have led to a major increase of CH4 concentrations in surface waters and CH4 emissions to the atmosphere in the BCZ. [less ▲]

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See detailAntarctic landfast sea ice: autotrophy vs heterotrophy, sink vs source of CO2
Van der Linden, Fanny ULiege; Moreau, Sébastien; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

Conference (2018, June 20)

Sea ice is a biome actively participating in the regional cycling of CO2 as both a source and a sink at different times of the year depending on its trophic status (autotrophic vs heterotrophic). In the ... [more ▼]

Sea ice is a biome actively participating in the regional cycling of CO2 as both a source and a sink at different times of the year depending on its trophic status (autotrophic vs heterotrophic). In the frame of the YROSIAE project (Year-Round survey of Ocean-Sea-Ice-Atmosphere Exchanges), carried out at Cape Evans in McMurdo Sound (Antarctica) from Nov. 2011 to Dec. 2012, ice cores, seawater, and brines were collected at regular time intervals. We used dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) and chlorophyll-a (chl-a) as proxies of net community production and autotrophic biomass, respectively. From spring, very high chl-a concentrations (>2400𝜇𝑔.𝐿!!) were observed at the bottom of the ice. This suggests high primary production. Strikingly, at the same time, nutrients increased significantly indicating strong remineralization at the bottom. In the ice interior, evolution of DIC was marked by a succession of autotrophic and heterotrophic phases. The overall increase of DIC suggests that the ice interior was rather heterotroph. Such sea ice system should expel CO2. Yet, strong under-saturation in CO2 and DIC depletion appeared at the ice surface, suggesting that sea ice should take up CO2 from the atmosphere. On the whole, land fast sea ice in McMurdo Sound appears as a puzzling ecosystem. High primary production and remineralization develop simultaneously at the bottom while the top of the ice is rather heterotrophic but still able to pump CO2 from the atmosphere. [less ▲]

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See detailInter-annual variations over a decade of primary production of the Mediterranean seagrass Posidonia oceanica
Borges, Alberto ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege

Conference (2018, May 29)

Posidonia oceanica meadows border nearly of all the coastlines of the Mediterranean Sea, and are present from depths between ~1 m and ~40m. They are among the most productive ecosystems on Earth, host a ... [more ▼]

Posidonia oceanica meadows border nearly of all the coastlines of the Mediterranean Sea, and are present from depths between ~1 m and ~40m. They are among the most productive ecosystems on Earth, host a large biodiversity and provide numerous ecosystem services and goods. These ecosystems are declining in response to several human stressors: eutrophication (waste water and aquaculture), physical destruction (urbanisation of the littoral, anchoring and trawling), and climate change (sea-level rise and warming). We acquired quasi-continuous measurements of community gross primary production (GPP) by mass balance of O2 measured on a mooring, from August 2006 to October 2016 over a Posidonia oceanica meadow (10 m depth) in the Bay of Revelleta (Corsica). Over the 2006-2016 period, annual GPP averaged 88 molO2 m-2 yr-1 and ranged from 61 to 108 molO2 m-2 yr-1. Two years (2007 and 2013) were characterized by the lowest annual GPP, due to accumulation of leaf litter in fall and early winter due to the low occurrence of storms (absence of litter export), leading to occultation of benthic macro-algae. Among the other years, the inter-annual variability of GPP was related to changes during the February-August period, as GPP was repeatable among years during the September-January period. For the February-August period, inter-annual variations of GPP were related to Chlorophyll-a (Chl-a), solar radiation and water temperature. Phytoplankton GPP corresponded to a small fraction of community GPP, so the relation between GPP and Chl-a probably reflected inter-annual variations of nutrient inputs that favored both phytoplanktonic and benthic GPP. The correlation of GPP with solar radiation show that light availability contributes to inter-annual variations of the development of P. oceanica, in line with previous studies that showed the control of light availability on primary production seasonal and depth variations. The positive relation between GPP and temperature was consistent with the fact that the observed temperatures in the Bay of Revelleta were within the comfort range for the growth of P. oceanica. [less ▲]

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See detailPAM fluorometry research in Posidonia oceanica
Richir, Jonathan ULiege; Abadie, Arnaud ULiege; Borges, Alberto ULiege et al

Scientific conference (2018, April 26)

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See detailEtude de la photosynthèse de Posidonia oceanica par fluorimétrie modulée
Richir, Jonathan ULiege; Abadie, Arnaud; Borges, Alberto ULiege et al

Conference (2018, April 10)

Numerous methods for measuring seagrass productivity and growth exist: evolution of O2 or CO2 (incubation chambers, optodes), biomass, shoot leaf elongation, determination of elementary contents … Another ... [more ▼]

Numerous methods for measuring seagrass productivity and growth exist: evolution of O2 or CO2 (incubation chambers, optodes), biomass, shoot leaf elongation, determination of elementary contents … Another possible method relies on pulse amplitude modulation fluorometry (PAM). This technique allows the determination of the photosynthetic quantum yield (Yield) from fluorescence re-emitted by chlorophyll a before and after the application of a saturating light pulse. The Yield determined along a gradient of irradiance draws a light curve (RLC, Rapid Light Curve) similar to photosynthesis-irradiance curves. Since spring 2015 several measurements of Posidonia oceanica photosynthetic activity have been performed at STARESO using diving-PAM fluorometers, for multiple related purposes. The results of these works show that: (i) the absorbance of light by P. oceanica leaves is lower than the average value of terrestrial plants, (ii) the Yield remains constant, being influenced neither by season nor by depth and only the strong light intensities at shallow depths cause its decrease (photoinhibition), (iii) RLCs highlight the high photochemical plasticity of the plant to environmental conditions, (iv) the maximum electron transfer rate modelled from RLCs seems to be a good indicator of the average elongation of shoot leaves and hence of shoot growth and (v) photosynthesis as a biomarker responds to short-term Cu exposures at environmentally relevant levels. Posidonia oceanica photosynthetic activity, which will further be monitored during an in situ shading experiment, is studied in parallel with the development of a new generic biomarker of stress, the ratio of concentrations of organosulfured coumpounds in the plant (dimethylsulfonioproprionate, DMSP and dimethylsulfoxide, DMSO). In conclusion, whether the scientific issue is ecophysiological, environmental, ecotoxicological, PAM fluorometry is a technical approach to consider. [less ▲]

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See detailEtude des séries temporelles : exemple de la température de l’eau
Richir, Jonathan ULiege; Borges, Alberto ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

Conference (2018, April 10)

De nombreux paramètres biologiques, environnementaux, climatologiques sont mesurés à et par STARESO depuis des décennies. Les données récoltées sont accessibles via la base de données partagée RACE de ... [more ▼]

De nombreux paramètres biologiques, environnementaux, climatologiques sont mesurés à et par STARESO depuis des décennies. Les données récoltées sont accessibles via la base de données partagée RACE de l’Université de Liège. Dans le cas de séries temporelles, les paramètres suivis sont mesurés de manière séquentielle au cours du temps. La plus représentative est sans aucun doute la série des données de température de l’eau acquise depuis près de 40 ans. La température est un paramètre important qui permet de mettre en évidence sur le long-terme des changements notamment liés au réchauffement climatique, changements qui affectent le fonctionnement des océans tant dans la physique que dans la biologie. L’analyse des séries temporelles de données nécessitent souvent un important travail préparatoire de standardisation (intervalles de mesure irréguliers, trous dans la série, évolution des méthodes d’acquisition des données …). Une fois standardisées, les séries de données peuvent être analysées avec les outils et approches statistiques propres aux séries temporelles : décomposition de la série pour en extraire la tendance générale, statistiques glissantes, calcul des anomalies, analyse des quantiles, mise en évidence d’évènements extrêmes tels les vagues de chaleurs … Tout ce travail, conséquent, doit pouvoir être partagé, vérifié, validé et permettre la mise à jour ultérieure de l’analyse. C’est le concept même de science reproductible. Cette reproductibilité est rendue notamment possible par l’utilisation du langage de programmation R. Cette communication illustre, à travers l’exemple clef de l’évolution de la température de l’eau, l’analyse des séries temporelles de données dans le cadre de STARECAPMED. [less ▲]

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See detailAnnual cycle of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) related to phytoplankton succession in the Southern North Sea
Speeckaert, Gaëlle ULiege; Borges, Alberto ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

in Science of the Total Environment (2018), 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.11.359

The influence of abiotic and biotic variables on the concentration of dimethyl sulfide (DMS), dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), were investigated during an annual cycle in ... [more ▼]

The influence of abiotic and biotic variables on the concentration of dimethyl sulfide (DMS), dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), were investigated during an annual cycle in 2016 in the Belgian Coastal Zone (BCZ, North Sea). We reported strong seasonal variations in the concentration of these compounds linked to the phytoplankton succession with high DMS(P,O) producers (mainly Phaeocystis globosa) occurring in spring and low DMS(P,O) producers (various diatoms species) occurring in early spring and autumn. Spatial gradients of DMS and DMSP were related to those of phytoplankton biomass itself related to the inputs of nutrients from the Scheldt estuary. However, the use of a relationship with Chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) concentration is not sufficient to predict DMSP. Accounting for the phytoplankton composition, two different DMSP versus Chl-a correlations could be established, one for diatoms and another one for Phaeocystis colonies. We also reported high nearshore DMSO concentrations uncoupled to Chl-a and DMSP concentrations but linked to high suspended particulate matter (SPM) presumably coming from the Scheldt estuary as indicated by the positive relationship between annual average SPM and salinity. [less ▲]

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See detailProductivity and temperature as drivers of seasonal and spatial variations of dissolved methane in the Southern Bight of the North Sea
Borges, Alberto ULiege; Speeckaert, Gaëlle ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

in Ecosystems (2018), 21(-), 583-599

Dissolved CH4 concentrations in the Belgian coastal zone (North Sea) ranged between 670 nmol L-1 near-shore and 4 nmol L-1 off-shore. Spatial variations of CH4 were related to sediment organic matter (OM ... [more ▼]

Dissolved CH4 concentrations in the Belgian coastal zone (North Sea) ranged between 670 nmol L-1 near-shore and 4 nmol L-1 off-shore. Spatial variations of CH4 were related to sediment organic matter (OM) content and gassy sediments. In near-shore stations with fine sand or muddy sediments, the CH4 seasonal cycle followed water temperature, suggesting methanogenesis control by temperature in these OM rich sediments. In off-shore stations with permeable sediments, the CH4 seasonal cycle showed a yearly peak following the Chlorophyll-a spring peak, suggesting that in these OM poor sediments, methanogenesis depended on freshly produced OM delivery. This does not exclude the possibility that some CH4 might originate from dimethylsulfide (DMS) or dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) or methylphosphonate transformations in the most off-shore stations. Yet, the average seasonal CH4 cycle was unrelated to those of DMS(P), very abundant during the Phaeocystis bloom. The annual average CH4 emission was 126 mmol m-2 yr-1 in the most near-shore stations (~4 km from the coast) and 28 mmol m-2 yr-1 in the most off-shore stations (~23 km from the coast), 1,260 to 280 times higher than the open ocean average value (0.1 mmol m-2 yr-1). The strong control of CH4 by sediment OM content and by temperature suggests that marine coastal CH4 emissions, in particular in shallow areas, should respond to future eutrophication and warming of climate. This is supported by the comparison of CH4 concentrations at five stations obtained in March 1990 and 2016, showing a decreasing trend consistent with alleviation of eutrophication in the area. [less ▲]

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See detailPreservation protocol for dimethylsulfoniopropionate and dimethylsulfoxide analysis in plant material of the Mediterranean seagrass Posidonia oceanica, and re-evaluation of dimethylsulfoniopropionate leaf content
Borges, Alberto ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege

in Aquatic Botany (2017), 143(0), 8-10

We tested three treatments to preserve Posidonia oceanica leaves for the analysis of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO): oven dried at 60 °C for 24 h, frozen at −20 °C, and ... [more ▼]

We tested three treatments to preserve Posidonia oceanica leaves for the analysis of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO): oven dried at 60 °C for 24 h, frozen at −20 °C, and frozen-in-ice and kept at −20 °C. The DMSP content was analyzed by proxy as dimethylsulfide (DMS) by gas chromatography after alkaline cleavage at room-temperature. The DMSP leaf content of P. oceanica in samples that were oven dried at 60 °C for 24 h, then stored at room temperature decreased by 87% over 80 days of storage and then remained stable for about 88 additional days compared to the control. The DMSO leaf content of P. oceanica in samples that were oven dried increased nine-fold after 198 days of storage following drying compared to the control. Both the DMSP and DMSO leaf content of P. oceanica remained stable for 198 days compared to the control with frozen and frozen-in-ice treatments, which we both recommend as adequate protocols to preserve P. oceanica tissues for DMS(P,O) analysis. The annual average DMSP leaf content of P. oceanica at 10 m in the Bay of Calvi (Corsica, France) was 205 ± 58 μmol g−1 (fresh weight) based on samples preserved frozen, two orders of magnitude higher than the value we previously reported based on samples that were oven dried. The newly determined DMSP leaf content allows ranking P. oceanica as the highest DMSP producer reported to date among marine and inter-tidal autotrophs. [less ▲]

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See detailNatural patches in Posidonia oceanica meadows: the seasonal biogeochemical pore water characteristics of two edge types
Abadie, Arnaud ULiege; Borges, Alberto ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

in Marine Biology (2017), 164:166

Seagrass meadows can be assimilated to seascape matrixes encompassing a mosaic of natural and anthropogenic patches. Natural patches within the Mediterranean Posidonia oceanica meadows show a structural ... [more ▼]

Seagrass meadows can be assimilated to seascape matrixes encompassing a mosaic of natural and anthropogenic patches. Natural patches within the Mediterranean Posidonia oceanica meadows show a structural particularity which consist in a duality of their edge types. One edge is eroded by bottom currents, while the adjacent meadow colonizes the bare sediments. This study aims to study the dynamics of these two edges through the investigation of the biogeochemistry (pH, total alkalinity, dissolved inorganic carbon, CO2, CH4, N2O, H2S, dissolved inorganic nitrogen, PO4 3−) within vegetated and unvegetated sediments. These observations are compared with the adjacent meadow to have a better understanding of the colonization processes. Our results reveal that the P. oceanica matrix shows differences from the vegetated edges of sand patches, especially with regard to nutrient availability, which is generally more important at the colonized edge (dissolved inorganic nitrogen up to 65.39 μM in June). A clear disparity also occurs between the eroded and colonized edge with both a seasonal and bathymetrical variation of leaf biomass with higher disparities at 10 m in June (colonized edge 1415 gDW m−2; eroded edge 1133 gDW m−2). Themost important contrasts during this study were assessed in June, suggesting that the warm period of the year is more suitable for sampling to highlight disparate characteristics in temperate seagrass meadows. These findings put into light the potential importance of biogeochemical processes in the dynamics of natural patch edges. We hypothesize that they may influence the structural dynamics of P. oceanica seascapes. [less ▲]

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See detailAntarctic sea ice trophic status
Van der Linden, Fanny ULiege; Moreau, Sébastien; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

Poster (2017, July)

The sea ice ecosystem is characterized by steep gradients in temperature, salinity, light and nutrient availability. Despite these challenging environmental conditions, sea ice provides a dynamic habitat ... [more ▼]

The sea ice ecosystem is characterized by steep gradients in temperature, salinity, light and nutrient availability. Despite these challenging environmental conditions, sea ice provides a dynamic habitat for diverse communities of microorganisms. These communities include a wide variety of organisms from different taxonomic groups such as algae, bacteria, heterotrophic protists, fungi as well as viruses [Horner et al., 1992; Deming, 2010; Thomas and Dieckmann, 2010; Poulin et al., 2011]. In the frame of the YROSIAE project (Year-Round survey of Ocean-Sea-Ice-Atmosphere Exchanges), carried out at Cape Evans in McMurdo Sound (Antarctica) from Nov. 2011 to Dec. 2012, ice cores, seawater, and brine material were collected at regular time intervals. Physical properties (salinity, temperature, texture) and biogeochemical parameters (pCO2, dissolved inorganic carbon, total alkalinity, chlorophyll-a, macro-nutrients) were analysed. We will here particularly consider changes inused dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) and chlorophyll-a (chl-a) , used as a proxiesy of net community production and autotrophic biomass, respectively. A high spatial and temporal variability in ice algal biomass and DIC evolution were observed. From spring, very high chl-a concentrations (>2400μg.L^(-1)) were observed at the bottom of the ice, a common feature of land fast ice in the McMurdo Sound. This suggests high primary production. However Strikingly, , at the same time, nutrients at the bottom of the ice increased significantly suggesting high heterotrophyremineralisation. In the middle of the ice column, evolution of DIC is was marked by a succession of autotrophic and heterotrophic phases. The overall increase of DIC suggests that the ice interior was rather heterotroph. Such sea ice system should expel CO2. Yet, strong under-saturation in CO2 and DIC depletion appeared at the ice surface, suggesting that sea ice was taking up CO2 from the atmosphere. On the whole, land fast sea ice in McMurdo Sound appears as a puzzling ecosystem. It is able to support elevated growth of autotrophic organisms at the bottom, but still appears to be heterotrophicin parallel to high remineralization, while the top of the ice appears to be rather heterotrophic but stilland able to pump CO2 from the atmosphere. [less ▲]

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See detailTemperature, productivity and sediment characteristics as drivers of seasonal and spatial variations of dissolved methane in the near-shore coastal areas (Belgian coastal zone, North Sea)
Borges, Alberto ULiege; Speeckaert, Gaëlle ULiege; Champenois, Willy ULiege et al

Conference (2017, April 26)

multiple possible sources of CH4 such as from rivers and gassy sediments, and where intense phytoplankton blooms are dominated by the high dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) producing micro-algae ... [more ▼]

multiple possible sources of CH4 such as from rivers and gassy sediments, and where intense phytoplankton blooms are dominated by the high dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) producing micro-algae Phaeocystis globosa, leading to DMSP and dimethylsulfide (DMS) concentrations. Furthermore, the BCZ is a site of important OM sedimentation and accumulation unlike the rest of the North Sea. Spatial variations of dissolved CH4 concentrations were very marked with a minimum yearly average of 9 nmol L-1 in one of the most off-shore stations and maximum yearly average of 139 nmol L-1 at one of the most nearshore stations. The spatial variations of dissolved CH4 concentrations were related to the organic matter (OM) content of sediments, although the highest concentrations seemed to also be related to inputs of CH4 from gassy sediments associated to submerged peat. In the near-shore stations with fine sand or muddy sediments with a high OM content, the seasonal cycle of dissolved CH4 concentration closely followed the seasonal cycle of water temperature, suggesting the control of methanogenesis by temperature in these OM replete sediments. In the off-shore stations with permeable sediments with a low OM content, the seasonal cycle of dissolved CH4 concentration showed a yearly peak following the chlorophyll-a spring peak. This suggests that in these OM poor sediments, methanogenesis depended on the delivery to the sediments of freshly produced OM. In both types of sediments, the seasonal cycle of dissolved CH4 concentrations was unrelated the seasonal cycles of DMS, and DMSP, despite the fact that these quantities were very high during the spring Phaeocystis globosa bloom. This suggests that in this shallow coastal environment CH4 production is overwhelmingly related to benthic processes and unrelated to DMS(P) transformations in the water column as recently suggested in several open ocean regions. The annual average CH4 emission was 41 mmol m-2 yr-1 in the most near-shore stations (_4 km from the coast) and 10 mmol m-2 yr-1 in the most off-shore stations (_23 km from the coast), 410-100 times higher than the average value in the open ocean (0.1 mmol m-2 yr-1). The strong control of CH4 concentrations by sediment OM content and by temperature suggests that marine coastal CH4 emissions, in particular shallow coastal areas, should respond in future to eutrophication and warming of climate. This is confirmed by the comparison of CH4 concentrations at five stations obtained in March in years 1990 and 2016, showing a decreasing trend consistent with alleviation of eutrophication in the area. [less ▲]

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