Journal cover Journal topic
Biogeosciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 15, issue 13
Biogeosciences, 15, 4147-4161, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-15-4147-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Biogeosciences, 15, 4147-4161, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-15-4147-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 09 Jul 2018

Research article | 09 Jul 2018

Long-chain diols in rivers: distribution and potential biological sources

Julie Lattaud1, Frédérique Kirkels2, Francien Peterse2, Chantal V. Freymond3, Timothy I. Eglinton3, Jens Hefter4, Gesine Mollenhauer4, Sergio Balzano1, Laura Villanueva1, Marcel T. J. van der Meer1, Ellen C. Hopmans1, Jaap S. Sinninghe Damsté1,2, and Stefan Schouten1,2 Julie Lattaud et al.
  • 1NIOZ Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, Department of Marine Microbiology and Biogeochemistry, and Utrecht University, P.O. Box 59, 1790 AB Den Burg, the Netherlands
  • 2Utrecht University, Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Geosciences, Princetonlaan 8A, 3584 CB Utrecht, the Netherlands
  • 3Geological Institute, ETH Zürich, Sonneggstrasse 5, 8092 Zürich, Switzerland
  • 4Alfred Wegener Institute, Department of Geosciences, Marine Geochemistry, Am Handelshafen 12, Bremerhaven, Germany

Abstract. Long-chain diols (LCDs) occur widespread in marine environments and also in lakes and rivers. Transport of LCDs from rivers may impact the distribution of LCDs in coastal environments, however relatively little is known about the distribution and biological sources of LCDs in river systems. In this study, we investigated the distribution of LCDs in suspended particulate matter (SPM) of three river systems (Godavari, Danube, and Rhine) in relation with precipitation, temperature, and source catchments. The dominant long-chain diol is the C32 1,15-diol followed by the C30 1,15-diol in all studied river systems. In regions influenced by marine waters, such as delta systems, the fractional abundance of the C30 1,15-diol is substantially higher than in the river itself, suggesting different LCD producers in marine and freshwater environments. A change in the LCD distribution along the downstream transects of the rivers studied was not observed. However, an effect of river flow is observed; i.e., the concentration of the C32 1,15-diol is higher in stagnant waters such as reservoirs and during seasons with river low stands. A seasonal change in the LCD distribution was observed in the Rhine, likely due to a change in the producers. Eukaryotic diversity analysis by 18S rRNA gene sequencing of SPM from the Rhine showed extremely low abundances of sequences (i.e., <0.32% of total reads) related to known algal LCD producers. Furthermore, incubation of the river water with 13C-labeled bicarbonate did not result in 13C incorporation into LCDs. This indicates that the LCDs present are mainly of fossil origin in the fast-flowing part of the Rhine. Overall, our results suggest that the LCD producers in rivers predominantly reside in lakes or side ponds that are part of the river system.

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Long-chain diols (LCDs) are biomarkers that occur widespread in marine environments and also in lakes and rivers. In this study, we looked at the distribution of LCDs in three river systems (Godavari, Danube, and Rhine) in relation to season, precipitation, and temperature. We found out that the LCDs are likely being produced in calm areas of the river systems and that marine LCDs have a different distribution than riverine LCDs.
Long-chain diols (LCDs) are biomarkers that occur widespread in marine environments and also in...
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