Investigating the microbial ecology of coastal hotspots of marine nitrogen fixation in the western North Atlantic

Wang, Seaver, Tang, Weiyi, Delage, Erwan, Gifford, Scott, Whitby, Hannah ORCID: 0000-0002-0064-3052, González, Aridane G, Eveillard, Damien, Planquette, Hélène and Cassar, Nicolas
(2021) Investigating the microbial ecology of coastal hotspots of marine nitrogen fixation in the western North Atlantic. Scientific Reports, 11 (1).

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<jats:title>Abstract</jats:title><jats:p>Variation in the microbial cycling of nutrients and carbon in the ocean is an emergent property of complex planktonic communities. While recent findings have considerably expanded our understanding of the diversity and distribution of nitrogen (N<jats:sub>2</jats:sub>) fixing marine diazotrophs, knowledge gaps remain regarding ecological interactions between diazotrophs and other community members. Using quantitative 16S and 18S V4 rDNA amplicon sequencing, we surveyed eukaryotic and prokaryotic microbial communities from samples collected in August 2016 and 2017 across the Western North Atlantic. Leveraging and significantly expanding an earlier published 2015 molecular dataset, we examined microbial community structure and ecological co-occurrence relationships associated with intense hotspots of N<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> fixation previously reported at sites off the Southern New England Shelf and Mid-Atlantic Bight. Overall, we observed a negative relationship between eukaryotic diversity and both N<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> fixation and net community production (NCP). Maximum N<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> fixation rates occurred at sites with high abundances of mixotrophic stramenopiles, notably <jats:italic>Chrysophyceae</jats:italic>. Network analysis revealed such stramenopiles to be keystone taxa alongside the haptophyte diazotroph host <jats:italic>Braarudosphaera bigelowii</jats:italic> and chlorophytes. Our findings highlight an intriguing relationship between marine stramenopiles and high N<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> fixation coastal sites.</jats:p>

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Engineering > School of Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2021 08:20
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2022 00:13
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-021-84969-1
Open Access URL: