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European microbiology of particulate systems

Objective



Particles are important in geochemical fluxes in the shelf margin in the North Western Mediterranean Sea. The microbial population attached to the particles are the major mediators of these biogeochemical processes. In order to understand the biogeochemical processes it is important to study the microbial processes occurring on particles in the natural environment.
The overall objective of this project is to investigate the microbial population dynamics on particles and the role of specific microbial processes in the biogeochemisrty of the water column. The spatial and/or temporal evolution of particle-attached bacteria will be measured in terms of budgets and fluxes in the ocean interior. The relative biomasses, the specific and physiological diversity of natural communities, and the autotrophic and heterotrophic bacteria activities in the particulate system will be compared with those of free-living microorganisms. Theoretical studies will be devoted to increasing the knowledge of the microbial mechanisms governing the dynamics of particulate systems, and reciprocally, to the protective role of particles. All data will be used for modelling the impact of attached microorganisms and aggregates on carbon flux in the water column, and on the particle distribution and remineralization.

The specific objectives of the research are:

1. Determination of microbial activates influencing biogeochemical cycles, and measurement of their rates.

2. Estimation of bacteria metabolic activities affecting the physical and chemical composition of particles (production of polymers, hydrolysis of macromolecules such as the degradation of chitin).

3. Determination of the composition of particulate matter.
4. Measurement of the vertical and horizontal distribution and associated changes in the state of activity of the attached microorganisms.
5. Assessment of the relative importance and taxonomy diversity of microbial communities colonising particulate material, according to the abundance, origin, chemical nature and spatial distribution in the water column of the particles.

6. To develop a model of studied processes related to the microbiology of the particles which will include the effects of fluctuating physical changes on activity of attached microorganisms.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
Address
Avenue De Luminy 163, Campus De Luminy
13288 Marseille
France

Participants (9)

Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
France
Address
3 Rue De La Batterie Des Lions
13007 Marseille
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)
France
Address
Station Zoologique
06230 Villefranche-sur-mer
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)
France
Address
Station Zoologique
06230 Villefranche-sur-mer
GBF - NATIONAL CENTRE FOR BIOTECHNOLOGY
Germany
Address
Mascheroder Weg 1
38124 Braunschweig
NERC Centre of Coastal and Marine Sciences
United Kingdom
Address
Prospect Place West Hoe
PL1 3DH Plymouth
UNIVERSITY OF ABERDEEN
United Kingdom
Address
Institute Of Medical Sciences, Foresthill
AB25 2ZD Aberdeen
Universidad del Pais Vasco
Spain
Address
644,Apdo
48080 Bilbao
Universität Wien
Austria
Address
14,Althanstrasse
1090 Wien
Université de Liège
Belgium
Address
22,Quai Van Beneden
4020 Jupille - Liège