Browsing by Subject "PHASE-SHIFTS"

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  • El-Khaled, Yusuf C.; Nafeh, Rassil; Roth, Florian; Rädecker, Nils; Karcher, Denis B.; Jones, Burton H.; Voolstra, Christian R.; Wild, Christian (2021)
    Nitrogen cycling in coral reefs may be affected by nutrient availability, but knowledge about concentrationdependent thresholds that modulate dinitrogen fixation and denitrification is missing. We determined the effects of different nitrate concentrations (ambient, 1, 5, 10 mu M nitrate addition) on both processes under two light scenarios (i.e., light and dark) using a combined acetylene assay for two common benthic reef substrates, i.e., turf algae and coral rubble. For both substrates, dinitrogen fixation rates peaked at 5 mu M nitrate addition in light, whereas denitrification was highest at 10 mu M nitrate addition in the dark. At 10 mu m nitrate addition in the dark, a near-complete collapse of dinitrogen fixation concurrent with a 76-fold increase in denitrification observed for coral rubble, suggesting potential threshold responses linked to the nutritional state of the community. We conclude that dynamic nitrogen cycling activity may help stabilise nitrogen availability in microbial communities associated with coral reef substrates.
  • Roth, Florian; RAdecker, Nils; Carvalho, Susana; Duarte, Carlos M.; Saderne, Vincent; Anton, Andrea; Silva, Luis; Calleja, Maria Ll; MorAn, XosE Anxelu G.; Voolstra, Christian R.; Kuerten, Benjamin; Jones, Burton H.; Wild, Christian (2021)
    Shifts from coral to algal dominance are expected to increase in tropical coral reefs as a result of anthropogenic disturbances. The consequences for key ecosystem functions such as primary productivity, calcification, and nutrient recycling are poorly understood, particularly under changing environmental conditions. We used a novel in situ incubation approach to compare functions of coral- and algae-dominated communities in the central Red Sea bimonthly over an entire year. In situ gross and net community primary productivity, calcification, dissolved organic carbon fluxes, dissolved inorganic nitrogen fluxes, and their respective activation energies were quantified to describe the effects of seasonal changes. Overall, coral-dominated communities exhibited 30% lower net productivity and 10 times higher calcification than algae-dominated communities. Estimated activation energies indicated a higher thermal sensitivity of coral-dominated communities. In these communities, net productivity and calcification were negatively correlated with temperature (>40% and >65% reduction, respectively, with +5 degrees C increase from winter to summer), whereas carbon losses via respiration and dissolved organic carbon release more than doubled at higher temperatures. In contrast, algae-dominated communities doubled net productivity in summer, while calcification and dissolved organic carbon fluxes were unaffected. These results suggest pronounced changes in community functioning associated with coral-algal phase shifts. Algae-dominated communities may outcompete coral-dominated communities because of their higher productivity and carbon retention to support fast biomass accumulation while compromising the formation of important reef framework structures. Higher temperatures likely amplify these functional differences, indicating a high vulnerability of ecosystem functions of coral-dominated communities to temperatures even below coral bleaching thresholds. Our results suggest that ocean warming may not only cause but also amplify coral-algal phase shifts in coral reefs.
  • El-Khaled, Yusuf C.; Roth, Florian; Rädecker, Nils; Tilstra, Arjen; Karcher, Denis B.; Kurten, Benjamin; Jones, Burton H.; Voolstra, Christian R.; Wild, Christian (2021)
    Coral reefs experience phase shifts from coral- to algae-dominated benthic communities, which could affect the interplay between processes introducing and removing bioavailable nitrogen. However, the magnitude of such processes, i.e., dinitrogen (N-2) fixation and denitrification levels, and their responses to phase shifts remain unknown in coral reefs. We assessed both processes for the dominant species of six benthic categories (hard corals, soft corals, turf algae, coral rubble, biogenic rock, and reef sands) accounting for>98% of the benthic cover of a central Red Sea coral reef. Rates were extrapolated to the relative benthic cover of the studied organisms in co-occurring coral- and algae-dominated areas of the same reef. In general, benthic categories with high N-2 fixation exhibited low denitrification activity. Extrapolated to the respective reef area, turf algae and coral rubble accounted for>90% of overall N-2 fixation, whereas corals contributed to more than half of reef denitrification. Total N-2 fixation was twice as high in algae- compared to coral-dominated areas, whereas denitrification levels were similar. We conclude that algae-dominated reefs promote new nitrogen input through enhanced N-2 fixation and comparatively low denitrification. The subsequent increased nitrogen availability could support net productivity, resulting in a positive feedback loop that increases the competitive advantage of algae over corals in reefs that experienced a phase shift.
  • Rozov, Stanislav V.; Porkka-Heiskanen, Tarja; Panula, Pertti (2015)
    Several lines of evidence suggest a regulatory role of histamine in circadian rhythms, but little is known about signaling pathways that would be involved in such a putative role. The aim of this study was to examine whether histamine mediates its effects on the circadian system through Hrh1 or Hrh3 receptors. We assessed both diurnal and free-running locomotor activity rhythms of Hrh1(-/-) and Hrh3(-/-) mice. We also determined the expression of Per1, Per2 and Bmal1 genes in the suprachiasmatic nuclei, several areas of the cerebral cortex and striatum under symmetric 24 h light-dark cycle at zeitgeber times 14 and 6 by using radioactive in situ hybridization. We found no differences between Hrh1(-/-) and wild type mice in the length, amplitude and mesor of diurnal and free-running activity rhythms as well as in expression of Per1, Per2 and Bmal1 genes in any of the examined brain structures. The amplitude of free-running activity rhythm of the Hrh3(-/-) mice was significantly flattened, whereas the expression of the clock genes in Hrh3(-/-) mice was similar to the wild type animals in all of the assessed brain structures. Therefore, the knockout of Hrh1 receptor had no effects on the circadian rhythm of spontaneous locomotion, and a knockout of Hrh3 receptor caused a substantial reduction of free-running activity rhythm amplitude, but none of these knockout models affected the expression patterns of the core clock genes in any of the studied brain structures.