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:2/3/2016)... , Feb. 3, 2016 ... addition of the "Emotion Detection and ... Learning, and Others), Software Tools (Facial Expression, ... End Users,and Regions - Global forecast to ... --> http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/d8zjcd/emotion_detection ) has announced ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... 2, 2016   Parabon NanoLabs (Parabon) ... Army Research Office and the Defense Forensics and ... of the company,s Snapshot Kinship Inference ... more generally, defense-related DNA forensics.  Although Snapshot is ... appearance and ancestry from DNA evidence), it also ...
(Date:1/28/2016)... Synaptics (NASDAQ: SYNA ), a leading developer of ... ended December 31, 2015. --> ... increased 2 percent compared to the comparable quarter last year to ... was $35.0 million, or $0.93 per diluted share. ... first quarter of fiscal 2016 grew 9 percent over the prior ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... Feb. 11, 2016  Dovetail Genomics™ LLC today announced ... program for a planned metagenomic genome assembly service. ... metagenomic genome assembly method in a talk on Friday, ... & Technology conference in Orlando, Fla. ... complex datasets is difficult. Using its proprietary ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 11, 2016 , ... ... for more than 150 years, continues today to pursue the highest level of ... of analytical instruments: the AR9 Refractometer and the AR5 Refractometer. Accurate, reliable ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Inc. (NYSE: BIOA ), a leader in renewable ... Ltd., its partner in the Sarnia ... CDN$25 million in the joint venture for 10% of ...  Mitsui will also play a stronger role in the ... , providing dedicated resources alongside BioAmber,s commercial team. ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Ky. , Feb. 10, 2016 NX ... utilizing its proprietary NeXosome® technology for early warning ... of its most recent study by Dr. ... at the Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine,s (SMFM) annual ... GA, February 1-6 th , 2016.  The presentation reported ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: