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Ocean Chemistry


Securing the Supply of Sea Scallops for Today and Tomorrow

Good management has brought the $559 million United States sea scallop fishery back from the brink of collapse over the past 20 years.  However, its current fishery management plan does not account for longer-term environmental change like ocean warming and acidification that may affect the fishery in the future. A group of researchers from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, and Ocean Conservancy hope to change that. 

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Ocean Bacteria Get ‘Pumped Up’

In a new study published April 27 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, scientists at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and their colleague from Rutgers University discovered a surprising new short-circuit to the biological pump. They found that sinking particles of stressed and dying phytoplankton release chemicals that have a jolting, steroid-like effect on marine bacteria feeding on the particles. The chemicals juice up the bacteria’s metabolism causing them to more rapidly convert organic carbon in the particles back into CO2 before they can sink to the deep ocean.

 

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Study Finds Deep Ocean is Source of Dissolved Iron in Central Pacific

A new study led by scientists at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) points to the deep ocean as a major source of dissolved iron in the central Pacific Ocean. This finding highlights the vital role ocean mixing plays in determining whether deep sources of iron reach the surface-dwelling life that need it to survive.

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Swimming in Low-pH Seas

Swimming in Low-pH Seas

Researchers knew that squid raised in acidified water developed abnormal balance organs. To find out whether the young squid could still balance and swim normally, Summer Student Fellow Doriane Weiler mapped their movements.

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Scallops Under Stress

Scallops Under Stress

Like other marine species, scallops face multiple climate change-related problems. Summer Student Fellow Cailan Sugano studied how scallops respond to acidification and lack of food—and whether extra food can help them resist damage due to more acidic seawater.

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Proteomics Reveals Ocean’s Inner Workings

Proteomics Reveals Ocean's Inner Workings

In a new study, WHOI scientists have demonstrated how the emerging biomedical technique of measuring proteins—a field called proteomics—can be applied to the ocean to reveal the inner biochemical workings of microbial life and ocean ecosystems.

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