Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Bacterial 'food supplements' for small algae

Date:
April 9, 2010
Source:
Society for General Microbiology
Summary:
To boost their diet of mineral nutrients and sunlight, small algae also feast on bacteria in order to grow and fix carbon dioxide. Understanding more about the lifestyle of small algae -- which are major players in CO2 fixation in the ocean -- could help to improve ecological models of oceanic and global changes.

To boost their diet of mineral nutrients and sunlight, small algae also feast on bacteria in order to grow and fix carbon dioxide (CO2). Understanding more about the lifestyle of small algae -- which are major players in CO2 fixation in the ocean -- could help to improve ecological models of oceanic and global changes.

Professor Mike Zubkov from the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton presented his study on bacterioplankton consumption at the Society for General Microbiology's spring meeting in Edinburgh March 29.

The research, conducted on board the Royal Research Ship Discovery in the North Atlantic Ocean in the summer of 2007, found that the smallest algae consume more bacteria than specialised predators such as certain protozoa. This conclusion was supported by further evidence gathered on subsequent research trips to the tropical Atlantic.

It was previously thought that the algae are purely phototrophic organisms, using only sunlight and mineral nutrients dissolved in seawater to fix CO2 into biomass. The researchers think that the ability to also feed on bacteria may well confer an evolutionary advantage to small algae. "Feeding on bacteria provides the smallest algae with biologically concentrated nutrients, giving them a competitive survival edge in the open ocean," said Professor Zubkov.

The findings are being incorporated into ecological models to assess scenarios of oceanic and global changes. "These algae are one of the dominant groups of oceanic CO2 fixers -- up to 40% of the gas could be fixed by these microbes in the open ocean. Knowing how they acquire nutrients and build biomass is essential if we are to understand the biological capacity of the ocean to absorb and to retain CO2," said Professor Zubkov.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Society for General Microbiology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Society for General Microbiology. "Bacterial 'food supplements' for small algae." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 April 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100329203224.htm>.
Society for General Microbiology. (2010, April 9). Bacterial 'food supplements' for small algae. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100329203224.htm
Society for General Microbiology. "Bacterial 'food supplements' for small algae." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100329203224.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Change of Diet Helps Crocodile Business

Change of Diet Helps Crocodile Business

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 16, 2014) Crocodile farming has been a challenge in Zimbabwe in recent years do the economic collapse and the financial crisis. But as Ciara Sutton reports one of Europe's biggest suppliers of skins to the luxury market has come up with an unusual survival strategy - vegetarian food. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A research institute in Paris somehow misplaced more than 2,000 vials of the deadly SARS virus. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Three Rare White Tiger Cubs Debut at Zoo

Raw: Three Rare White Tiger Cubs Debut at Zoo

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) The Buenos Aires Zoo debuted a trio of rare white Bengal tiger cubs on Wednesday. (April 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins