Carbon and nitrogen biogeochemical cycling potentials of supraglacial cryoconite communities

Cameron, K, Hodson, A and Osborn, A 2012, 'Carbon and nitrogen biogeochemical cycling potentials of supraglacial cryoconite communities', Polar Biology, vol. 35, no. 9, pp. 1375-1393.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Carbon and nitrogen biogeochemical cycling potentials of supraglacial cryoconite communities
Author(s) Cameron, K
Hodson, A
Osborn, A
Year 2012
Journal name Polar Biology
Volume number 35
Issue number 9
Start page 1375
End page 1393
Total pages 19
Publisher Springer
Abstract Microorganisms have a crucial role to play in the cycling of nutrients within glacial environments. These systems are often nutrient-limited, and so biogeochemical reactions, which ensure the availability of nutrients for microbial communities, are critical for the maintenance of these systems. This study uses molecular biology to characterise the supraglacial cryoconite microbial communities that are capable of cycling carbon and nitrogen in a range of glacial environments. Organisms with the potential to photosynthesise were identified, including Cyanobacteria, Actinobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Stramenopiles and Haptophyceae. Organisms with the potential to perform nitrification and denitrification processes were also identified and featured Betaproteobacteria, Alphaproteobacteria, Thaumarchaeota and Cyanobacteria. While it is unlikely that the chemical and physical parameters of the supraglacial environment will facilitate optimal rates of all of the nitrogen-related biogeochemical processes, the transport of these cryoconite communities to downstream locations, where more favourable conditions may prevail, will perhaps provide a valuable inoculation of microorganisms with the genetic potential to catalyse these reactions elsewhere.
Subject Microbiology not elsewhere classified
Environmental Science and Management not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) Biogeochemical
Carbon
Cryoconite
Glacier
Microbial diversity
Nitrogen
DOI - identifier 10.1007/s00300-012-1178-3
Copyright notice © 2012 Springer-Verlag
ISSN 0722-4060
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