An increase in the concentration of riverine dissolved organic matter (DOM) has been observed during the last decades, and this material can stimulate marine plankton in coastal waters with significant freshwater input. We studied the effect of two size fractions of riverine high molecular weight dissolved organic matter (HMW DOM), isolated with tangential ultrafiltration, on the harmful dinoflagellate Alexandrium minutum and a natural isolate of marine bacteria under laboratory conditions. Both A. minutum and bacteria grew significantly better with the low MW DOM compared to both the high MW DOM fraction and controls (no DOM additions). This experiment demonstrates that the harmful algae A. minutum and bacteria benefit from larger molecules of river HMW DOM, and highlights the potential of A. minutum to utilize organic nitrogen from large DOM molecules. This ability may enhance their likelihood of success in estuaries/costal waters with a humic rich freshwater input, especially when the relative amount of large molecules within DOM is more pronounced.
|Status||Published - 2009|