Not all eucaryotic algae can replace zinc with cobalt: Chaetoceros calcitrans (Bacillariophyceae) versus Emiliania huxleyi (Prymnesiophyceae)

Timmermans, Klaas R., Josje Snoek, Loes J. A. Gerringa, Ingrid Zondervan, Hein J. W. de Baar

Limnol. Oceanogr., 46(3), 2001, 699-703 | DOI: 10.4319/lo.2001.46.3.0699

ABSTRACT: Zinc and cobalt are essential trace metals for phytoplankton growth and can substitute for each other metabolically in some eukaryotic algal species, especially in some marine diatoms and coccolithophorids. In the present study, it is reported that in the marine diatom Chaetoceros calcitrans, Co cannot replace Zn: in contrast, Co substitution of Zn was found in Emiliania huxleyi. It is concluded that Co can substitute for Zn but that the phenomenon is species/genera-specific. Differing ability to substitute Zn with Co can be regarded as an additional factor affecting phytoplankton biomass and/ or species composition.

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