Dissolved organic carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus in the N-E Atlantic and the N-W Mediterranean with particular reference to non-refractory fractions and degradation

Type Article
Date 2004-12
Language English
Author(s) Aminot Alain, Kerouel Roger
Affiliation(s) IFREMER Brest, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
Source Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers (0967-0637) (Elsevier), 2004-12 , Vol. 51 , N. 12 , P. 1975-1999
DOI 10.1016/j.dsr.2004.07.016
WOS© Times Cited 69
Keyword(s) N W Mediterranean, N E Atlantic, Mineralization, Non refractory, Refractory, Dissolved organic phosphorus, Dissolved organic nitrogen, Dissolved organic carbon
Abstract Dissolved organic carbon (DOC), dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) and dissolved organic phosphorus (DOP) measured in deep profiles in the N-E Atlantic and in the N-W Mediterranean in the period 1984-2002 are described. After accurate validation, they show close agreement with those previously published. Classic profiles were obtained, with concentrations decreasing in deep waters. In the Mediterranean and in the Atlantic comparable concentrations were found in the 1500-2000 m waters, 44-46 mumol 1(-1) DOC, 2.6-2.8 mumol 1(-1) DON and 0.02-0.03 mumol 1-1 DOP. In the surface layers, DOC concentrations were higher, but DON and DOP concentrations lower, in the Mediterranean than in the Atlantic, leading to higher element ratios in the Mediterranean. In autumn, values were, respectively, DOC:DON similar to17 vs. similar to14, DOC:DOP similar to950 vs. 500 and DON:DOP similar to55 vs. 35. The data suggest an increase in DOC and DON in the North Atlantic Central Water over 15 years, which may be linked to the North Atlantic climatic oscillations. Refractory DOM found in the 1500-2000m layer exhibited C:N:P ratios of 1570:100:1. The labile + semi-labile (= non-refractory) DOM (nrDOM) pool was computed as DOM in excess of the refractory pool. Its contribution to total DOM above the thermocline in the open sea amounted to 25-35% of DOC, 30-35% of DON, and 60-80% of DOP. Element ratios of the nrDOM varied among stations and were lower than those of refractory DOM, except for C:N in the Mediterranean: nrDOC:nrDON similar to10-19, nrDOC:nrDOP similar to160-530 and nrDON:nrDOP similar to15-38. The specific stoichiometry of DOM in the Mediterranean led us to postulate that overconsumption of carbon is probably a main process in that oligotrophic sea. By coupling non-refractory DOM stoichiometry and relationships between the main DOM elements in the water column, the relative mineralization of C, N and P from DOM was studied. Below the thermocline, the preferential removal of phosphorus with regard to carbon from the semi-labile DOM can be confirmed, but not the preferential removal of nitrogen. In the ocean surface layers, processes depend on the oceanic area and can differ from deep waters, so preferential carbon removal seems more frequent. Bacterial growth efficiency data indicate that bacteria are directly responsible for mineralization of a high proportion of DON and DOP in the deep water.
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Aminot Alain, Kerouel Roger (2004). Dissolved organic carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus in the N-E Atlantic and the N-W Mediterranean with particular reference to non-refractory fractions and degradation. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, 51(12), 1975-1999. Publisher's official version : https://doi.org/10.1016/j.dsr.2004.07.016 , Open Access version : https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00000/472/