Cell-, biovolume- and biosurface-specific energy fluxes through marine picoplankton as a function of the assemblage size structure

Vladimir S. Mukhanov, Olga G. Naidanova, Olga A. Lopukhina, Richard Bernard Kemp

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6 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

The heat production of natural heterotrophic picoplankton collected in Sevastopol Bay (the Black Sea) and its long-term (from 1 to 105 days) enrichment batch-culture isolated from the same site was measured by isothermal microcalorimetry. Over the period of senescence of the culture, cell miniaturisation took place, with the average cell volume decreasing from 1.09 ± 0.15 (95% CI) to 0.18 ± 0.02 μm3. For the same time period, the heat fluxes decreased from 45 ± 3 fW per cell, 56 ± 13 fW μm−3 and 10 ± 3 fW μm−2 to 0.5 ± 0.2 fW per cell, 2.1 ± 1.1 fW μm−3 and 0.2 ± 0.1 fW μm−2, thus providing evidence of the positive dependence of the fluxes on the cell size (r2 = 0.45, n = 68). In the natural assemblage, biovolume- and biosurface-specific heat fluxes insignificantly (r2 = 0.19 and 0.12, respectively; n = 25) increased with decreasing average cell size from 0.75 ± 0.12 to 0.13 ± 0.04 μm3, to give indirect evidence that at least a part of the ultramicrobacterial pool are cells with high volume-specific metabolic rate. The maximum biosurface-specific metabolic rate measured for the natural bacteria proved to be close to those averaged for actively growing aquatic protozoans at 1.3 × 10−15 mol O2 μm−2 h−1 (equivalent to 2 × 10−13 W μm−2 for purely aerobic metabolism), as calculated from published data. The latter does not depend on the cell volume (r2 <0.001, n = 58) over the size range from 102 (smallest flagellates) to 108 μm3 (largest sarcodines), supplying illustrative evidence for Rubner's law. Marine bacteria (10−1 μm3) appear to fit this law and extend its scale by 2 orders of magnitude.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-33
Number of pages11
JournalThermochimica Acta
Volume458
Issue number1-2
Early online date06 Mar 2007
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jun 2007

Keywords

  • picoplankton
  • metabolic rate
  • heat flow
  • microcalorimetry
  • size distribution
  • long-term stationary phase

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