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Denitrification responses to increasing cadmium exposure in Baltic Sea sediments
Stockholm University.
Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Environmental Science.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4587-8541
Stockholm University / University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark.
Stockholm University.
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2019 (English)In: Aquatic Toxicology, ISSN 0166-445X, E-ISSN 1879-1514, Vol. 217, article id 105328Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Benthic ecosystems have come under intense pressure, due to eutrophication-driven oxygen decline and industrial metal contamination. One of the most toxic metals is Cadmium (Cd), which is lethal to many aquatic organisms already at low concentrations. Denitrification by facultative anaerobic microorganisms is an essential process to transform, but also to remove, excess nitrate in eutrophied systems. Cd has been shown to decrease denitrification and sequester free sulfide, which is available when oxygen is scarce and generally inhibits complete denitrification (i.e. N2O to N2). In polluted sediments, an interaction between oxygen and Cd may influence denitrification and this relationship has not been studied. For example, in the Baltic Sea some sediments are double exposed to both Cd and hypoxia. In this study, we examined how the double exposure of Cd and fluctuations in oxygen affects denitrification in Baltic Sea sediment. Results show that oxygen largely regulated N2O and N2 production after 21 days of exposure to Cd (ranging from 0 to 500 μg/L, 5 different treatments, measured by the isotope pairing technique (IPT)). In the high Cd treatment (500 μg/L) the variation in N2 production increased compared to the other treatments. Increases in N2 production are suggested to be an effect of 1) enhanced nitrification that increases NO3 − availability thus stimulating denitrification, and 2) Cd successfully sequestrating sulfide (yielding CdS), which allows for full denitrification to N2. The in situ field sediment contained initially high Cd concentrations in the pore water (∼10 μg/L) and microbial communities might already have been adapted to metal stress, making the effect of low Cd levels negligible. Here we show that high levels of cadmium pollution might increase N2 production and influence nitrogen cycling in marine sediments. © 2019 The Authors

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2019. Vol. 217, article id 105328
Keywords [en]
Baltic Sea, Benthos, Denitrification, Hypoxia, Oxygen, Pollution, Sediment
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Environmental Studies; Baltic and East European studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-39283DOI: 10.1016/j.aquatox.2019.105328PubMedID: 31629202Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85073170054Local ID: 3150-3.1.1-2017OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-39283DiVA, id: diva2:1367023
Part of project
Response and recovery of benthic biodiversity and ecosystem functions to chemical pollution and eutrophication, The Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies
Funder
The Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies, 77/2017Available from: 2019-10-31 Created: 2019-10-31 Last updated: 2019-10-31Bibliographically approved

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