The chemical composition of mucilage aggregates found during summer 2000, 2001 and 2002 in the North Adriatic Sea depends on the nature of the organic matter during aggregation, on the environmental conditions of the site of formation and on the transformations during ageing. The mucilages were composed of organic matter, together with a significant inorganic fraction. Elemental analysis revealed 12.5–32.2% of organic carbon, 0–7.3% of inorganic carbon and 1.0–3.7% of nitrogen. The Corg/N ratios of most aggregates were between 7.5 and 12.6, values close to those found in the suspended matter; higher ratios were found in large-size (N5 m) aggregates which are probably older. The content of carbohydrates and proteins determined in the aggregates, respectively, 15.4F8.9% and 7.9F4.8%, w/w, showed a prevalence of carbohydrates over proteins. Neutral carbohydrate analysis of purified polysaccharides from mucilage samples showed very similar signatures with high relative abundance of galactose and glucose. Humic, fulvic and humin substances extracted from the mucilages constitute an important fraction of the organic matter in the aggregates. The humin (a fraction insoluble in acidic and basic media) was present in all mucilage samples, indicating the refractory nature of a part of the organic matter in the mucilage. The iron and calcium could play a role during the aggregation process to form a complex with polysaccharides and humic fractions. The Corg/N ratio 10F2 found in the humic acids extracted from the Adriatic aggregates disclosed a marine origin. The low phosphorus content and the high Corg/P ratio found in the aggregates might depend from high bacteria activity or from the aggregation of organic fractions depleted of phosphorus. The principal inorganic species contained aluminium and silicon, part of which was of biogenic origin and was more significant in the offshore mucilage aggregates than in the coastal ones. The Sibiog/Corg ratio showed that diatoms were always present in the aggregates, although it cannot be established whether these are the producers or these develop within the aggregates.

Chemical characterization of different typologies of mucilaginous aggregates in the Northern Adriatic Sea

Giani M;
2005

Abstract

The chemical composition of mucilage aggregates found during summer 2000, 2001 and 2002 in the North Adriatic Sea depends on the nature of the organic matter during aggregation, on the environmental conditions of the site of formation and on the transformations during ageing. The mucilages were composed of organic matter, together with a significant inorganic fraction. Elemental analysis revealed 12.5–32.2% of organic carbon, 0–7.3% of inorganic carbon and 1.0–3.7% of nitrogen. The Corg/N ratios of most aggregates were between 7.5 and 12.6, values close to those found in the suspended matter; higher ratios were found in large-size (N5 m) aggregates which are probably older. The content of carbohydrates and proteins determined in the aggregates, respectively, 15.4F8.9% and 7.9F4.8%, w/w, showed a prevalence of carbohydrates over proteins. Neutral carbohydrate analysis of purified polysaccharides from mucilage samples showed very similar signatures with high relative abundance of galactose and glucose. Humic, fulvic and humin substances extracted from the mucilages constitute an important fraction of the organic matter in the aggregates. The humin (a fraction insoluble in acidic and basic media) was present in all mucilage samples, indicating the refractory nature of a part of the organic matter in the mucilage. The iron and calcium could play a role during the aggregation process to form a complex with polysaccharides and humic fractions. The Corg/N ratio 10F2 found in the humic acids extracted from the Adriatic aggregates disclosed a marine origin. The low phosphorus content and the high Corg/P ratio found in the aggregates might depend from high bacteria activity or from the aggregation of organic fractions depleted of phosphorus. The principal inorganic species contained aluminium and silicon, part of which was of biogenic origin and was more significant in the offshore mucilage aggregates than in the coastal ones. The Sibiog/Corg ratio showed that diatoms were always present in the aggregates, although it cannot be established whether these are the producers or these develop within the aggregates.
mucilage; northern Adriatic; humic substances
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.14083/752
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