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Seasonal variation of extracellular enzymatic activity in marine snow-associated microbial communities and their impact on the surrounding water

Ivančić, Ingrid; Paliaga, Paolo; Pfannkuchen, Martin; Djakovac, Tamara; Najdek-Dragić, Mirjana; Steiner, Paul; Korlević, Marino; Markovski, Marsej; Baričević, Ana; Smodlaka Tanković, Mirta; Herndl, Gerhard J (2018) Seasonal variation of extracellular enzymatic activity in marine snow-associated microbial communities and their impact on the surrounding water. FEMS Microbiology Ecology, 94 (12). ISSN 0168-6496

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Seasonal changes of microbial abundance and associated extracellular enzymatic activity in marine snow and in seawater were studied in the northern Adriatic during a three year period. Marine snow was present during the entire investigated period, although with higher concentrations during summer than during winter. Microorganisms densely colonized marine snow and aggregate-associated enzymatic activity was substantially higher (up to 105 times) than in seawater. Alkaline phosphatase activity (APA) and aminopeptidase activity in marine snow showed seasonal variation with higher activities in late spring-summer than in autumn-winter, probably in response to changes in the quantity and quality of organic matter. The highest cell-specific bacterial activity was found for phosphatase, followed by peptidase, and the lowest for glucosidases. Differential hydrolysis of marine snow-derived organic matter points to the well-known P-limitation of the northern Adriatic and indicates preferential utilization of phosphorus- and nitrogen-rich organic compounds by microbes, while hydrolysis of polysaccharides seemed to be less important. In oligotrophic conditions during summer, organic matter released from marine snow might represent a significant source of substrate for free-living bacteria in seawater. For the first time microorganisms producing APA in marine snow were identified revealing that dense populations of bacteria expressed APA, while cyanobacteria did not. Cyanobacteria proliferating in marine snow could benefit from phosphorus release by bacteria and nanoflagellates.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This work is part of the Croatian-Austrian bilateral project 'Role of marine snow on planktonic system functioning in the northern Adriatic Sea'. Financial support was also provided by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) project ARTEMIS (project number: P 28 781-B21) to GJH and UIP-2014-09-6563 funded by the Croatian Science Foundation.
Uncontrolled Keywords: extracellular enzymatic activity ; marine snow aggregates ; free-living and attached bacteria ; organic matter degradation ; northern Adriatic
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Interdisciplinary Natural Sciences
NATURAL SCIENCES > Interdisciplinary Natural Sciences > Marine Science
Divisions: Center for Marine Research
Project titleProject leaderProject codeProject type
Životne strategije fitoplanktona u sjevernom Jadranu-P-limitAndreas Pfannkuchen MartinUIP-2014-09-6563HRZZ
Depositing User: Ingrid Ivančić
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2019 08:00
DOI: 10.1093/femsec/fiy198

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