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Seawater transport during coral biomineralization

Gagnon, Alexander C. and Adkins, Jess F. and Erez, Jonathan (2012) Seawater transport during coral biomineralization. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 329 . pp. 150-161. ISSN 0012-821X.

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Cation transport during skeletal growth is a key process controlling metal/calcium (Me/Ca) paleoproxy behavior in coral. To characterize this transport, cultured corals were transferred into seawater enriched in the rare earth element Tb^(3+) as well as stable isotopes of calcium, strontium, and barium. Subsequent NanoSIMS ion images of each coral skeleton were used to follow uptake dynamics. These images show a continuous region corresponding to new growth that is homogeneously enriched in each tracer. Isotope ratio profiles across the new growth boundary transition rapidly from natural abundance ratios to a ratio matching the enriched culture solution. The location of this transition is the same for each element, within analytical resolution. The synchronous incorporation of all these cations, including the dissimilar ion terbium, which has no known biological function in coral, suggests that: (1) there is cation exchange between seawater and the calcifying fluid, and (2) these elements are influenced by similar transport mechanisms consistent with direct and rapid seawater transport to the site of calcification. Measured using isotope ratio profiles, seawater transport rates differ from place to place on the growing coral skeleton, with calcifying fluid turnover times from 30 min to 5.7 h. Despite these differences, all the elements measured in this study show the same transport dynamics at each location. Using an analytical geochemical model of biomineralization that includes direct seawater transport we constrain the role of active calcium pumping during calcification and we show that the balance between seawater transport and precipitation can explain observed Me/Ca variability in deep-sea coral.

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Adkins, Jess F.0000-0002-3174-5190
Additional Information:© 2012 Elsevier B.V. Accepted 2 March 2012. Available online 31 March 2012. Editor: P. DeMenocal. NanoSIMS analysis was conducted using an instrument at the Caltech Center for Microanalysis which is supported in part by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. The confocal laser-scanning microscope is housed and maintained by the Caltech Biological Imaging Center. This manuscript benefited from constructive suggestions by two anonymous reviewers.
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Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:biomineralization; coral; NanoSIMS; paleoceanography; Me/Ca
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20120608-153059820
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Official Citation:Alexander C. Gagnon, Jess F. Adkins, Jonathan Erez, Seawater transport during coral biomineralization, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Volumes 329–330, 1 May 2012, Pages 150-161, ISSN 0012-821X, 10.1016/j.epsl.2012.03.005. ( Keywords: biomineralization; coral; NanoSIMS; paleoceanography; Me/Ca
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:31861
Deposited By: Aucoeur Ngo
Deposited On:13 Jun 2012 20:50
Last Modified:24 Feb 2020 10:30

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