In our recently finished project
TASIO, we have explored the global distribution of two key phytoplankton
functional groups diatoms and coccolithophores. In Tasio we studied how
phytoplankton such as diatoms and coccolithophores play a part in the
regulation of atmospheric carbon dioxide, which has significance to important
climate change studies. Our project was featured in Projects
TITLE: Taxonomic composition and cell size of marine eukaryotic
through Marie Curie program
Diatoms, coccolithophores and ocean carbon
Carbon uptake by
phytoplankton, and its export as organic matter to the ocean interior (a
mechanism known as the ‘biological pump’) lowers the partial
pressure of CO2 in the upper ocean and facilitates the diffusive
drawdown of atmospheric CO2. However, precipitation of calcium
carbonate by marine calcifiers such as coccolithophorids increases the
partial pressure of CO2 and promotes outgassing from the ocean
to the atmosphere (known as the ‘alkalinity pump’). Over the
past 100 million years, these two carbon fluxes have been modulated by the
abundance of diatoms and coccolithophorids, resulting in biological
feedback on atmospheric CO2 and Earth’s climate. (PNAS 2008).
TITLE: Response of marine phytoplankton to past climate change
Funded by Xunta de Galicia (INCITE)
Background: ubiquitous dispersal to survive climate change
Dispersal is a life-history trait that has profound consequences for
individuals, populations and communities, and its importance has been well
recognized for centuries. Viewed from an evolutionary perspective,
dispersal determines the level of gene flow (as opposed to genetic
isolation) between individuals and populations, and affects processes such
as local adaptation, speciation, extinction, and the evolution of
life-history traits. We have shown recently that marine diatom species
possess global dispersal ranges. Our observations revealed that diatom
communities from North Atlantic resembled much more to those of the North
Pacific than to those in the Southern Ocean despite being separated by continental
masses (Science 2009).
facilitates environmental tracking and habitat recolonization. During the
Pleistocene there were massive changes in climate that altered the
distribution and areal extent of oceanic biomes. Analyses of fossil records
showed that the taxonomic composition of marine diatom communities may
change and recover in concert with the glacial/interglacial climates of the
Pleistocene, demonstrating that disruption of local conditions leads
microbial species to disperse into favourable habitats elsewhere. This
mechanism allowed these marine microbes to survive across dramatic climate
events in the geological past. See PLoSone 2010
TITLE: Phytoplankton abundance and cell size in the ocean
Phytoplankton abundance and cell size
Large sized species
with a higher surface to volume ratio are at a disadvantage with respect to
smaller cells for nutrient uptake in nutrient-poor ecosystems. Contrary to
expectations, the relationship between population density and cell size
exhibited a power function with an exponent near -0.75 regardless of the
nutritional status of the system. These results are consistent with a
Darwinian evolutionary model, in which larger species evolve adaptive
strategies to cope with their biophysical limits to nutrient acquisition. (Eco Letts
Marañón, E., Cermeño, P.,
López-Sandoval, D., Rodríguez-Ramos, T., Sobrino, C.,
Huete-Ortega, M., Blanco, J., Rodríguez, J. Unimodal size-scaling of
phytoplankton growth and the size-dependence of nutrient uptake and use. Ecology
Letters, doi: 10.1111/ele.12052.
Faculty of 1000
Rodríguez-Ramos, T., Cermeño,
P., Maranón, E. Cell size and taxon dependence of organic carbon
exudation in marine phytoplankton. Marine
Ecology Progress Series, in press
S. et al. (including Cermeño,
P.) Differential response of microbial plankton communities to nutrient
inputs in contrasting marine environments: North Atlantic Subtropical Gyre
and Ría de Vigo. Marine
Biology, in press
P., Marañón, E., Romero, O. (2012) Response of marine
diatom communities to Late Quaternary abrupt climate changes. Journal
of Plankton Research, doi: 10.1093/plankt/fbs073. Featured article
Marañón, E., Cermeño, P., Latasa, M.,
Tadonléké, R. M. (2012) Temperature, resources, and
phytoplankton size structure in the ocean. Limnology
and Oceanography, 57, 1266-1278.
Huete-Ortega, M., Cermeño P, Calvo, A., Marañón E. Isometric
size scaling of metabolic rate and the size abundance distribution of
of the Royal Society B doi: 10.1098/rspb.2011.2257
P. (2011) Marine planktonic microbes survived climatic instabilities in
the past. Proceedings of the Royal Society B doi:
P, Lee J-B, Wyman K, Schofield O. and Falkowski PG. (2011) Competitive
dynamics in two species of phytoplankton under non-equilibrium conditions. Marine Ecology
Progress Series 429: 19–28.
M., Cermeño P. and E.
Marañón. Determinación de la relación entre
producción primaria y tamaño celular en comunidades naturales
de fitoplancton. En "Métodos y técnicas en
investigación marina". Eds: C. Olabarría, E.
Rolán, J. M. García-Estévez, S. Pérez y G. Rosón.
10. Cermeño P. Dispersión sin límites. Investigación y
Ciencia. November 2010
E. et al. (including Cermeño
P) (2010) The degree of oligotrophy controls the response of microbial
plankton to Saharan dust. Limnology and Oceanography 55(6), 2339-2352. Highlighted
Faculty of 1000
12. Cermeño P, de Vargas, C.
Abrantes, F. Falkowski PG. Phytoplankton Biogeography and community
stability in the ocean. (2010) PLoSone 5, e10037.
Highlighted Faculty of
13. Cermeño P, Falkowski PG. Controls
on diatom biogeography in the ocean. (2009) Science 325, 1539-1541. (Perspective by David
14. Cermeño P, Dutkiewicz S,
Harris RP, Follows M, Schofield O, Falkowski PG. (2008). The role of
nutricline depth in regulating the ocean carbon cycle. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of USA 105,
15. Cermeño P, Figueiras FG.
(2008) Species richness and cell-size distribution: the size structure of
phytoplankton communities. Marine Ecology Progress Series 357, 79-85.
16. Cermeño P,
Marañón E, Harbour DS, Figueiras FG, Crespo BG, Huete M,
Varela M., Harris RP. (2008) Resource levels, allometric scaling of
phytoplankton abundance and marine phytoplankton diversity. Limnology and
Oceanography 53, 312-318.
E., Cermeño P, Rodriguez,
J, Zubkov M, Harris, R. (2007) Scaling phytoplankton photosynthesis in the
and Oceanography 52: 2190-2198.
P, Cermeño P,
Espiñeira M, Fernández E. (2006) Phytoplankton photosynthetic
efficiency and primary production rates estimated from Fast Repetition Rate
(FRR) fluorometry at coastal embayments affected by upwelling (Rías
Baixas; NW of Spain). Journal of
Plankton Research 28(12):1153-1165.
19. Cermeño P,
Marañón E, Harbour D, Harris R. (2006) Invariant scaling of
phytoplankton abundance and cell size in contrasting marine environments. Ecology
Letters 9(11): 1210-1215.
20. Cermeño P,
Marañón E, Pérez V, Serret P, Fernández E,
Castro CG. (2006) Phytoplankton size structure, primary production and net
community metabolism in a coastal ecosystem (Ría de Vigo, NW-Spain):
seasonal and short-time scale variability. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 67(2): 251-266.
21. Cermeño P,
Estévez-Blanco P, Marañón E, Fernández E.
(2005) Maximum photosynthetic efficiency of size-fractionated phytoplankton
assessed by 14C-uptake and fast repetition rate fluorometry. Limnology and
E, Cermeño P,
Pérez V. (2005) Photosynthetic production of dissolved organic
carbon during summer oligotrophic conditions in the Celtic Sea. Marine Ecology
Progress Series, 299:7-17.
23. Cermeño P,
Marañón E, Rodríguez J, Fernández E. (2005)
Large-sized phytoplankton sustain higher carbon-specific photosynthesis
than smaller cells in a coastal eutrophic ecosystem. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 297:51-60. Highlighted Faculty1000
24. Cermeño P,
Marañón E, Rodríguez J, Fernández E. (2005)
Size dependence of coastal phytoplankton photosynthesis under vertical
mixing conditions. Journal of Plankton Research, 27(5): 473-483.
E, Cermeño P,
Fernández E, Rodríguez J, Zabala L. (2004) Significance and
mechanisms of photosynthetic production of dissolved organic carbon in a
coastal eutrophic ecosystem. Limnology and Oceanography
26. Cermeño P, Nombela MA,
Costas S. (2003) Qualitative analysis of pigments in recent sediments of
the middle-inner Ría de Arosa (NW Spain): diagenetic and
environmental assessments. Thalassas
In preparation/in review
Cermeno, P. et al. Disconnecting
marine phytoplankton diversity from primary productivity. In review Marine
Ecology Progress Series
Cermeño, P., Castro, A.,
Vallina, S. Exponential diversification of planktic foraminifera in the
fossil record. In review.
T. et al. Testing the effect of sample size on the estimates of
phytoplankton diversity. In preparation
P. et al. The evolution of phytoplankton cell size and its role in the
sequestration of atmospheric carbon dioxide. In preparation
Cermeño P. et al. Nutrient controls of export production
in the glacial Atlantic ocean.
Marañón E, Cermeño P, Fernández
E, Zabala L, Rodríguez J. Microbial production of dissolved organic
carbon in a coastal embayment (Ría de Vigo, NW Spain): is there a
relationship with plankton size structure? IGS/AGU Nize 2002.
P, Marañón E, Fernández E, Pérez V, Serret
P. Size fractionated phytoplankton primary production in the Ría de
Vigo: seasonal and short term variability. Iberian Atlantic Continental
Margin, Vigo 2003.
Marañón E, Cermeño P, Fernández
E, Zabala L, Rodríguez J. Significance of dissolved organic carbon
production by microbial plankton in the Ría de Vigo. Iberian
Atlantic Continental Margin, Vigo 2003.
Pérez V, Cermeño P, Marañón E, Fernández E,
Serret P. Seasonal dynamics of microplankton oxygen metabolism in the
Ría de Vigo. Iberian Atlantic Continental Margin, Vigo 2003.
P, Nombela MA.. Pigments in recent sediments of the Ría de
Arosa. Iberian Atlantic Continental Margin, Vigo 2003.
P, Marañón E, Rodríguez J, Fernández E.
Positive Allometry in Phytoplankton Biomass-specific Photosynthesis in a
Coastal Ecosystem. ASLO summer meeting, Savannah June 2004.
Marañón E, Cermeño P, Fernández
E, Rodríguez J, Zabala L. Significance of dissolved organic carbon production
by microbial communities in a coastal eutrophic ecosystem. ASLO summer
meeting, Savannah June 2004.
P, Estévez-Blanco P, Marañón E, Fernández
E. Large sized phytoplankton have higher photosynthetic efficiency than
smaller cells under favourable growth conditions. Challenger Conference,
P, Marañón E, Rodríguez J, Fernández E,
Zabala L, Jiménez F. Size scaling deviation in phytoplankton
photosynthesis and the energy flow through a coastal ecosystem. ICES
Estévez-Blanco P, Fernández E,
Espiñeira M, Lorenzo J. Significant relationship between C-14 based
and FRRF derived primary production estimates in coastal waters off
NW-Spain. ASLO meeting, Salt Lake City ’05.
Marañón E, Cermeño P, Pérez V.
Continuity in the production of dissolved organic carbon. European
Geophysical Union, Vienna 2005.
Pérez V, Cermeño P, Serret P, Fernández E,
Marañón E. Seasonal variability of microbial oxygen
metabolism in a coastal ecosystem (Ría de Vigo, NW-Spain). Workshop
on respiration, Vigo’05.
P, Marañón E, Harbour D, Harris R Invariant size scaling
of phytoplankton abundance in contrasting marine environments. ASLO summer
meeting Santiago de Compostela 2005.
Gonzalez J, Fernández E, Perez V, Cermeño P,
Marañón E. Spatial variability of the size-fractionated
production/chl a ratio in the ocean. ASLO summer meeting Santiago de
Marañón E, Cermeño P, Rodríguez
J. Size scaling of phytoplankton photosynthesis in eutrophic and
oligotrophic marine ecosystems. IMBER symposium, Valencia 2007.
16. Cermeño P, Schofield O, Harbour DS,
Harris RP, Falkowski PG. Phytoplankton community composition and nutricline
depth in the ocean. Ocean Carbon Biogeochemistry, Woods Hole, USA, 2007
17. Cermeño P. The balance between diatoms
and coccolithophorids in the ocean. Invited talk, Massachusetts Institute
of Technology, USA, 2008
18. Cermeño P, Dutkiewicz, S, Harris RP,
Follows M, Schofield O, Falkowski PG. The role of nutricline depth in
regulating the ocean carbon cycle. ASLO/AGU/TOS Orlando, USA, 2008
19. Huete-Ortega M, Cermeño
P, Calvo A, Reul A, Blanco JM, Maranon E. Size-sacaling of
phytoplankton abundance and cell-specific photosynthesis in the
oligotrophic ocean. American Society Limnology Oceanography, Nize, France, 2009.
20. Maranon E. Fernandez A, Huete-Ortega M, Cermeño P, et al.
experimental dust addition on the biomass and metabolism of microbial
plankton in the oligotrophic Atlantic Ocean. American Society Limnology
Oceanography, Nize, France, 2009.
21. Cermeño P, Dutkiewicz, S, Harris RP,
Follows M, Schofield O, Falkowski PG. Upper ocean turbulence and the
balance between diatoms and coccolithophorids in the Atlantic Ocean .
American Society Limnology Oceanography, Nize, France, 2009.
22. Cermeño P. Competitive dynamics of
phytoplankton: from calm to turbulent waters. Eur-OCEANS conference
Influence of meso- and submesoscale ocean dynamics on the global carbon
cycle and marine ecosytems. ( 31th May to 2 June 2010 in Centre de la Mer,
Aber Wrac’h, Brittany, France ) (Invited lecture).
23. Huete-Ortega, M. Clavo-Diaz,
A., Cermeño, P. Marañón, E. Size-fractionated
biomass, primary production and turnover rates in the subtropical ocean.
Challenger Conference 2010, Southampton.
24. Cermeño P. Extinction of planktonic
microbes in the sea: does climatic instability increase the risk of
microbial extinction? ASLO 2011 Puerto Rico
25. Vallina, S., Cermeño, P.,
Dutkiewicz, S, Follows, M. Kill-the-winner predation and the survival of
rare phytoplankton species. Ocean Science Meeting (TOS/AGU/ASLO) Salt Lake
26. Cermeño, P. Finkel, Z., Vallina, S.
Climatic triggers for the evolutionary success of marine diatoms. Ocean
Science Meeting (TOS/AGU/ASLO) Salt Lake City 2012.