HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Scientists chart iron cycle in ocean

Scientists at the University of California have found that sunlight plays an important role in cycling iron in the ocean and making it available to marine life.

Iron, which is necessary for the sustenance of life, is scarce in the ocean. National Science Foundation (NSF)-supported researchers found that light helps transform the mineral into a form that can be easily taken up by phytoplankton and other microorganisms. They report their findings in the September 27 issue of the journal Nature.

"This discovery helps us better understand one of the essential links in the ocean's food chain," said Donald Burland, acting director of NSF's Chemistry Division. "It may also have implications for global climate change, since living organisms are important in the absorption and release of carbon dioxide from the oceans."

Iron and other trace metals are important biochemical ingredients in the production of plankton, the most abundant organisms in seawater, which are at the bottom of the aquatic food chain. But iron is rare in surface seawater, and scientists believe it occurs almost entirely in complex molecules in which the iron is strongly bound by organic ligands presumed to be of biological origin. Bacteria produce small molecules called siderophores to help them obtain iron from their environments, and this process may contribute to the pool of tightly bound iron complexes.

"We determined that iron bound to the oceanic siderophores react to light," said chemist Alison Butler of the University of California at Santa Barbara. "This photochemical reaction helps transform the iron complexes into a form that enables marine organisms to more easily acquire the essential iron."

The sun's energy turns the molecules into more loosely bound configurations of iron and oxygen atoms, Butler explained. This enables bacteria, p
'"/>

Contact: Amber Jones
aljones@nsf.gov
703-292-80703
National Science Foundation
26-Sep-2001


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Scientists to prototype cyberinfrastructure for research and education access to ocean observatories
2. Scientists sequence genome of kind of organism central to biospheres carbon cycle
3. Scientists find nanowires capable of detecting individual viruses
4. Scientists discover potential new way to control drug-resistant bacteria
5. Scientists explore genome of methane-breathing microbe
6. Scientists decipher genetic code of biothreat pathogen
7. Stuck on you: Scientists lay bare secrets of bacterial attachment proteins
8. Scientists discover proteins involved in spread of HIV-1 infection
9. Scientists fear new Ebola outbreak may explain sudden gorilla disappearance
10. Scientists reinvent DNA as template to produce organic molecules
11. Scientists visualise cellular handmaiden that restores shape to proteins

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:6/27/2016)... , June 27, 2016 Research and Markets ... America 2016-2020" report to their offering. ... North America to grow at a CAGR of 12.28% ... prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with inputs from industry ... over the coming years. The report also includes a discussion of ...
(Date:6/20/2016)... June 20, 2016 Securus Technologies, a ... solutions for public safety, investigation, corrections and monitoring ... involved, it has secured the final acceptance by ... for Managed Access Systems (MAS) installed. Furthermore, Securus ... to be installed by October, 2016. MAS distinguishes ...
(Date:6/7/2016)... June 7, 2016  Syngrafii Inc. and San ... relationship that includes integrating Syngrafii,s patented LongPen™ eSignature ... This collaboration will result in greater convenience for ... union, while maintaining existing document workflow and compliance ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/2/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2016 , ... The ... is expanding to three days and will take place on February 1-3, 2017 at ... and Dr James Gulley (NCI), the program provides a unique 360-degree approach, which addresses ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... , ... December 02, 2016 ... ... a consortium of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies dedicated to collaboratively developing improved ... interested in supplying a vendor-supported, portable online UHPLC, with robust, probe-based sampling. ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... The immunohistochemistry (IHC) market is projected ... of 7.3% during the forecast period of 2016 to 2021 dominated ... accounted for the largest share of immunohistochemistry (IHC) market, by end ... , , ... market spread across 225 pages, profiling 10 companies and supported with ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... , Nov. 30, 2016  GenomOncology today announced the ... President of Medical Affairs.  Dr. Coleman will ... the company,s proprietary knowledge-enabled platform. The GenomOncology software suite empowers ... genetic sequencing data and clinical decision support, from quality control ... , ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: