Biogeosciences, 7, 2915-2923, 2010
www.biogeosciences.net/7/2915/2010/
doi:10.5194/bg-7-2915-2010
© Author(s) 2010. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
CO2-induced seawater acidification affects physiological performance of the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum
Y. Wu1, K. Gao1, and U. Riebesell2
1State Key Laboratory of Marine Environmental Science, Xiamen University, Xiamen, China
2Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences (IFM-GEOMAR), Kiel, Germany

Abstract. CO2/pH perturbation experiments were carried out under two different pCO2 levels (39.3 and 101.3 Pa) to evaluate effects of CO2-induced ocean acidification on the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum. After acclimation (>20 generations) to ambient and elevated CO2 conditions (with corresponding pH values of 8.15 and 7.80, respectively), growth and photosynthetic carbon fixation rates of high CO2 grown cells were enhanced by 5% and 12%, respectively, and dark respiration stimulated by 34% compared to cells grown at ambient CO2. The half saturation constant (Km) for carbon fixation (dissolved inorganic carbon, DIC) increased by 20% under the low pH and high CO2 condition, reflecting a decreased affinity for HCO3 or/and CO2 and down-regulated carbon concentrating mechanism (CCM). In the high CO2 grown cells, the electron transport rate from photosystem II (PSII) was photoinhibited to a greater extent at high levels of photosynthetically active radiation, while non-photochemical quenching was reduced compared to low CO2 grown cells. This was probably due to the down-regulation of CCM, which serves as a sink for excessive energy. The balance between these positive and negative effects on diatom productivity will be a key factor in determining the net effect of rising atmospheric CO2 on ocean primary production.

Citation: Wu, Y., Gao, K., and Riebesell, U.: CO2-induced seawater acidification affects physiological performance of the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum, Biogeosciences, 7, 2915-2923, doi:10.5194/bg-7-2915-2010, 2010.
 
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