Resilience of cold-water scleractinian corals to ocean acidification: Boron isotopic systematics of pH and saturation state up-regulation

Journal article
(Original article)


Publication Details

Author(s): McCulloch M, Trotter J, Montagna P, Falter J, Dunbar R, Freiwald A, Försterra G, López Correa M, Maier C, Rüggeberg A, Taviani M
Journal: Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta
Publisher: Meteoritical Society
Publication year: 2012
Volume: 87
Pages range: 21-34
ISSN: 0016-7037
Language: English


Abstract


The boron isotope systematics has been determined for azooxanthellate scleractinian corals from a wide range of both deep-sea and shallow-water environments. The aragonitic coral species, Caryophyllia smithii, Desmophyllum dianthus, Enallopsammia rostrata, Lophelia pertusa, and Madrepora oculata, are all found to have relatively high δ 11B compositions ranging from 23.2‰ to 28.7‰. These values lie substantially above the pH-dependent inorganic seawater borate equilibrium curve, indicative of strong up-regulation of pH of the internal calcifying fluid (pH cf), being elevated by ~0.6-0.8units (ΔpH) relative to ambient seawater. In contrast, the deep-sea calcitic coral Corallium sp. has a significantly lower δ 11B composition of 15.5‰, with a corresponding lower ΔpH value of ~0.3units, reflecting the importance of mineralogical control on biological pH up-regulation.The solitary coral D. dianthus was sampled over a wide range of seawater pH T and shows an approximate linear correlation with ΔpH Desmo=6.43-0.71pH T (r 2=0.79). An improved correlation is however found with the closely related parameter of seawater aragonite saturation state, where ΔpH Desmo=1.09-0.14Ω arag (r 2=0.95), indicating the important control that carbonate saturation state has on calcification. The ability to up-regulate internal pH cf, and consequently Ω cf, of the calcifying fluid is therefore a process present in both azooxanthellate and zooxanthellate aragonitic corals, and is attributed to the action of Ca 2+-ATPase in modulating the proton gradient between seawater and the site of calcification. These findings also show that the boron isotopic compositions (δ 11B carb) of aragonitic corals are highly systematic and consistent with direct uptake of the borate species within the biologically controlled extracellular calcifying medium.We also show that the relatively strong up-regulation of pH and consequent elevation of the internal carbonate saturation state (Ω cf ~8.5 to ~13) at the site of calcification by cold-water corals, facilitates calcification at or in some cases below the aragonite saturation horizon, providing a greater ability to adapt to the already low and now decreasing carbonate ion concentrations. Although providing greater resilience to the effects of ocean acidification and enhancing rates of calcification with increasing temperature, the process of internal pH cf up-regulation has an associated energetic cost, and therefore growth-rate cost, of ~10% per 0.1 pH unit decrease in seawater pH T. Furthermore, as the aragonite saturation horizon shoals with rapidly increasing pCO 2 and Ω arag<1, increased dissolution of the exposed skeleton will ultimately limit their survival in the deep oceans. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.



FAU Authors / FAU Editors

López Correa, Matthias
Lehrstuhl für Paläoumwelt


How to cite

APA:
McCulloch, M., Trotter, J., Montagna, P., Falter, J., Dunbar, R., Freiwald, A.,... Taviani, M. (2012). Resilience of cold-water scleractinian corals to ocean acidification: Boron isotopic systematics of pH and saturation state up-regulation. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta, 87, 21-34. https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gca.2012.03.027

MLA:
McCulloch, Malcolm, et al. "Resilience of cold-water scleractinian corals to ocean acidification: Boron isotopic systematics of pH and saturation state up-regulation." Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta 87 (2012): 21-34.

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Last updated on 2018-09-08 at 16:08