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Journal Articles Frontiers in Microbiology Year : 2021

Different Active Microbial Communities in Two Contrasted Subantarctic Fjords


Microorganisms play a crucial role in biogeochemical processes affecting the primary production and biogeochemical cycles of the ocean. In subpolar areas, the increment of the water temperature induced by climate change could lead to changes in the structure and activity of planktonic microbial communities. To understand how the structure of the microbial community in Chilean Patagonian fjords could be affected by climate change, we analyzed the composition of the prokaryotic community (bacteria-archaea) in two fjords (Pia and Yendegaia) with contrasting morphological and hydrological features. We targeted both the standing stock (16S rRNA genes) and the active fraction (16S rRNA transcripts) of the microbial communities during two consecutive austral winters. Our results showed that in both fjords, the active community had higher diversity and stronger biogeographic patterns when compared to the standing stock. Members of the Alpha -, Gamma -, and Deltaproteobacteria followed by archaea from the Marine Group I ( Thaumarchaeota ) dominated the active communities in both fjords. However, in Pia fjord, which has a marine-terminating glacier, the composition of the microbial community was directly influenced by the freshwater discharges from the adjacent glacier, and indirectly by a possible upwelling phenomenon that could bring deep sea bacteria such as SAR202 to the surface layer. In turn, in the Yendegaia, which has a land-terminating glacier, microbial communities were more similar to the ones described in oceanic waters. Furthermore, in Yendegaia fjord, inter-annual differences in the taxonomic composition and diversity of the microbial community were observed. In conclusion, Yendegaia fjord, without glacier calving, represents a fjord type that will likely be more common under future climate scenarios. Our results showing distinct Yendegaia communities, with for example more potential nitrogen-fixing microorganisms ( Planctomycetes ), indicate that as a result of climate change, changing planktonic communities could potentially impact biogeochemical processes and nutrient sources in subantarctic fjords.
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Dates and versions

hal-03285687 , version 1 (13-07-2021)



Claudia Maturana-Martínez, Camila Fernández, Humberto E González, Pierre Galand. Different Active Microbial Communities in Two Contrasted Subantarctic Fjords. Frontiers in Microbiology, 2021, 12, pp.620220. ⟨10.3389/fmicb.2021.620220⟩. ⟨hal-03285687⟩
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