Influence de la structure des communautés planctoniques sur la variabilité temporelle et spatiale de la production marine du diméthylsulfure (DMS).

Authors: Lizotte, Martine
Advisor: Levasseur, Maurice
Abstract: Dimethylsulfide (DMS) is a sulfur-containing gas that exerts a cooling effect on climate by dispersing solar radiation and contributing to cloud formation in the atmosphere. DMS stems from the degradation of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), a compound synthesized by many phytoplankton species in the oceans. A fraction of the oceanic production of DMS results from the direct conversion of DMSP into DMS by certain phytoplankton species and another fraction results from an indirect transformation pathway, via the release of phytoplanktonic DMSP into the water column and its conversion into DMS by the bacterial community. On average, close to 10 % of the DMSP consumed by bacteria is converted into DMS, the rest being assimilated. While the global distribution of oceanic DMS is relatively well established, significant gaps still remain in our understanding of the mechanisms that regulate its production within the marine food web. In this study, the daily and seasonal variations of the production of DMS and the environmental factors that participate in its regulation have been studied in relation to the development of phytoplankton blooms in many biogeochemical provinces of the northwest (NW) Atlantic and the NW Pacific Ocean. A first seasonal study in the NW Atlantic reveals a striking difference in the factors that influence the distribution of DMS and its precursor DMSP. Concentrations of particulate DMSP (DMSPp) are highly correlated with the abundance of DMSPp-rich phytoplankton groups such as dinoflagellates and prymnesiophytes. The microbial dynamics of dissolved DMSP (DMSPd), that is its consumption and conversion into DMS by bacteria, are affected by the availability of the substrate. Furthermore, the relative contribution of bacteria to total net DMS production varies greatly among seasons, from 4 to 100 % at different stations. However, at many stations and particularly at those exhibiting high production rates of DMS, a large fraction (as much as 96 %) of the production of DMS results from non-bacterial processes. This suggests that the relative contribution of phytoplankton to the direct conversion of DMSP into DMS is high at these stations. Finally, results from this study suggest that on the latitudinal and seasonal scales considered, concentrations of DMS are highly correlated with environmental forcings, and particularly with doses of solar radiation reaching the planktonic food web. A second study specifically aimed at investigating the fate of DMSP during the decline of the spring diatom bloom in the NW Atlantic shows that despite the important phytoplankton biomass, production rates of DMS remained relatively low during the decline of the phytoplankton bloom in the SML because DMSP was principally utilized as a source of sulfur by the developing bacterial community. A third study focused on the fate of DMSP during an iron-induced bloom in the NW Pacific reveals that the addition of iron in this region resulted in a reduction of the bacterial conversion of DMSPd into DMS within the SML. During the iron-induced bloom, the increase in sulfur demand by the bacterial community lead to an increase in the proportion of consumed DMSPd being assimilated as a sulfur source. This result suggests that the addition of iron in the NW Pacific may diminish the oceanic production of DMS and its ventilation to the atmosphere. Overall, the results presented shed light on the importance of the coupling between the structure and dynamics of the plankton community, the production and composition of dissolved organic matter, which includes DMSPd, and environmental forcing in the cycling of DMS at different temporal scales.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2010
Open Access Date: 16 April 2018
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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