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Title: Heterotrophic activities of neustonic and planktonic bacterial communities in an estuarine environment (Ria de Aveiro)
Author: Santos, Luisa
Santos, Ana L.
Coelho, Francisco J. R. C.
Marcial Gomes, Newton C.
Dias, João Miguel
Cunha, Ângela
Almeida, Adelaide
Keywords: Ria de Aveiro
bacterial ectoenzymatic activity
bacterial monomer incorporation
surface microlayer
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Abstract: The uppermost millimeter of the water column, the surface microlayer (SML), hosts bacterial communities (bacterioneuston) with potential metabolic adaptations to this unique physical and chemical environment. Hydrolysis and monomer incorporation by bacterioneuston and bacterioplankton communities in the estuarine system, Ria de Aveiro, was investigated and compared during a 2-year survey. The study was conducted at two contrasting sites, typifying the marine and brackish water characteristics of the estuary and with different sources, amounts and composition of organic matter. In the marine zone, bacterioneuston showed higher rates of hydrolysis and lower rates of monomer incorporation than bacterioplankton, whereas in the brackish water zone, neustonic and planktonic microbial communities showed similar activity rates. This pattern may result from the different degree of surface organic and inorganic matter enrichments, which reflect site-specific characteristics, such as hydrodynamics and sources of organic matter composition. In general, the estuarine SML environment favors polymer hydrolysis, but inhibits monomer utilization, in comparison with the subsurface layers. However, the differences between the two communities tend to decrease as autotrophic and heterotrophic activities increase in the brackish-water area.
Peer review: yes
DOI: 10.1093/plankt/fbt084
ISSN: 0142-7873
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