WorldWideScience

Sample records for stony corals skeleton

  1. Naked Stony Corals: Skeleton Loss in Scleractinia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Medina, Monica; Collins, Allen G.; Takaoka, Tori L.; Kuehl,Jennifer; Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2005-12-01

    Hexacorallia includes the Scleractinia, or stony corals, characterized by having an external calcareous skeleton made of aragonite, and the Corallimorpharia, or mushroom corals, that lack such a skeleton. Although each group has traditionally been considered monophyletic, some molecular phylogenetic analyses have challenged this, suggesting that skeletal features are evolutionarily plastic, and reviving notions that the scleractinian skeleton may be ephemeral and that the group itself may be polyphyletic. Nevertheless, the most comprehensive phylogenetic study of Hexacorallia supported scleractinian monophyly (REF), and so this remains controversial. In order to resolve this contentious issue, we sequenced the complete mitochondrial genome sequences of nine scleractinians and four corallimorpharians and performed phylogenetic analysis that also included three outgroups (an octocoral and two sea anemones). Our data provide the first strong evidence that Scleractinia is paraphyletic and that the Corallimorpharia is derived from within the group, from which we conclude that skeletal loss has occurred in the latter group secondarily. It is possible that a driving force in such skeletal loss could be the high levels of CO{sub 2} in the ocean during the mid-Cretaceous, which would have impacted aragonite solubility. We estimate from molecular divergence measures that the Corallimorpharia arose in the mid-Cretaceous, approximately 87 million years ago (Ma), supporting this view. These data also permit us to date the origin of Scleractinia to 265 Ma, narrowing the gap between the group's phylogenetic origin and its earliest fossil record.

  2. Biological control of aragonite formation in stony corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Von Euw, Stanislas; Zhang, Qihong; Manichev, Viacheslav; Murali, Nagarajan; Gross, Juliane; Feldman, Leonard C.; Gustafsson, Torgny; Flach, Carol; Mendelsohn, Richard; Falkowski, Paul G.

    2017-06-01

    Little is known about how stony corals build their calcareous skeletons. There are two prevailing hypotheses: that it is a physicochemically dominated process and that it is a biologically mediated one. Using a combination of ultrahigh-resolution three-dimensional imaging and two-dimensional solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, we show that mineral deposition is biologically driven. Randomly arranged, amorphous nanoparticles are initially deposited in microenvironments enriched in organic material; they then aggregate and form ordered aragonitic structures through crystal growth by particle attachment. Our NMR results are consistent with heterogeneous nucleation of the solid mineral phase driven by coral acid-rich proteins. Such a mechanism suggests that stony corals may be able to sustain calcification even under lower pH conditions that do not favor the inorganic precipitation of aragonite.

  3. Evaluation of Stony Coral Indicators for Coral Reef ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colonies of reef-building stony corals at 57 stations around St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands were characterized by species, size and percentage of living tissue. Taxonomic, biological and physical indicators of coral condition were derived from these measurements and assessed for their response to gradients of human disturbance. The purpose of the study was to identify indicators that could be used for regulatory assessments under authority of the Clean Water Act--this requires that indicators distinguish anthropogenic disturbances from natural variation. Stony coral indicators were tested for correlation with human disturbance across gradients located on three different sides of the island. At the most intensely disturbed location, five of eight primary indicators were highly correlated with distance from the source of disturbance: Coral taxa richness, average colony size, the coefficient of variation of colony size (an indicator of colony size heterogeneity), total topographic coral surface area, and live coral surface area. An additional set of exploratory indicators related to rarity, reproductive and spawning mode, and taxonomic identity were also screened for association with disturbance at the same location. For the other two locations, there were no significant changes in indicator values and therefore no discernible effects of human activity. Coral indicators demonstrated sufficient precision to detect levels of change that would be applicable in a regio

  4. Deep-Sea Stony Coral Habitat Suitability

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Deep-sea corals, also known as cold water corals, create complex communities that provide habitat for a variety of invertebrate and fish species, such as grouper,...

  5. Probability sampling of stony coral populations in the Florida Keys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Steven G; Swanson, Dione W; Chiappone, Mark; Miller, Steven L; Ault, Jerald S

    2011-12-01

    Principles of probability survey design were applied to guide large-scale sampling of populations of stony corals and associated benthic taxa in the Florida Keys coral reef ecosystem. The survey employed a two-stage stratified random sampling design that partitioned the 251-km(2) domain by reef habitat types, geographic regions, and management zones. Estimates of the coefficient of variation (ratio of standard error to the mean) for stony coral population density and abundance ranged from 7% to 12% for four of six principal species. These levels of survey precision are among the highest reported for comparable surveys of marine species. Relatively precise estimates were also obtained for octocoral density, sponge frequency of occurrence, and benthic cover of algae and invertebrates. Probabilistic survey design techniques provided a robust framework for estimating population-level metrics and optimizing sampling efficiency.

  6. Indirect impacts of recreational scuba diving: patterns of growth and predation in branching stony corals

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Guzner, Barak; Novplansky, Ariel; Shalit, Or; Chadwick, Nanette E

    2010-01-01

    .... We compared coral skeletal growth and damage at sites that were protected vs unprotected from diving tourism, and identified tissue mortality through monthly monitoring of the branching stony coral Acropora hemprichii (Ehrenberg, 1834...

  7. Regional status assessment of stony corals in the U.S. Virgin Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    States may protect coral reefs using biological water quality standards outlined by the Clean Water Act. This requires biological assessments with indicators sensitive to human disturbance and regional, probability based survey designs. Stony coral condition was characterized on ...

  8. Comparative embryology of eleven species of stony corals (Scleractinia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okubo, Nami; Mezaki, Takuma; Nozawa, Yoko; Nakano, Yoshikatsu; Lien, Yi-Ting; Fukami, Hironobu; Hayward, David C; Ball, Eldon E

    2013-01-01

    A comprehensive understanding of coral reproduction and development is needed because corals are threatened in many ways by human activity. Major threats include the loss of their photosynthetic symbionts (Symbiodinium) caused by rising temperatures (bleaching), reduced ability to calcify caused by ocean acidification, increased storm severity associated with global climate change and an increase in predators caused by runoff from human agricultural activity. In spite of these threats, detailed descriptions of embryonic development are not available for many coral species. The current consensus is that there are two major groups of stony corals, the "complex" and the "robust". In this paper we describe the embryonic development of four "complex" species, Pseudosiderastrea tayamai, Galaxea fascicularis, Montipora hispida, and Pavona Decussata, and seven "robust" species, Oulastrea crispata, Platygyra contorta, Favites abdita, Echinophyllia aspera, Goniastrea favulus, Dipsastraea speciosa (previously Favia speciosa), and Phymastrea valenciennesi (previously Montastrea valenciennesi). Data from both histologically sectioned embryos and whole mounts are presented. One apparent difference between these two major groups is that before gastrulation the cells of the complex corals thus far described (mainly Acropora species) spread and flatten to produce the so-called prawn chip, which lacks a blastocoel. Our present broad survey of robust and complex corals reveals that prawn chip formation is not a synapomorphy of complex corals, as Pavona Decussata does not form a prawn chip and has a well-developed blastocoel. Although prawn chip formation cannot be used to separate the two clades, none of the robust corals which we surveyed has such a stage. Many robust coral embryos pass through two periods of invagination, separated by a return to a spherical shape. However, only the second of these periods is associated with endoderm formation. We have therefore termed the first

  9. Comparative embryology of eleven species of stony corals (Scleractinia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nami Okubo

    Full Text Available A comprehensive understanding of coral reproduction and development is needed because corals are threatened in many ways by human activity. Major threats include the loss of their photosynthetic symbionts (Symbiodinium caused by rising temperatures (bleaching, reduced ability to calcify caused by ocean acidification, increased storm severity associated with global climate change and an increase in predators caused by runoff from human agricultural activity. In spite of these threats, detailed descriptions of embryonic development are not available for many coral species. The current consensus is that there are two major groups of stony corals, the "complex" and the "robust". In this paper we describe the embryonic development of four "complex" species, Pseudosiderastrea tayamai, Galaxea fascicularis, Montipora hispida, and Pavona Decussata, and seven "robust" species, Oulastrea crispata, Platygyra contorta, Favites abdita, Echinophyllia aspera, Goniastrea favulus, Dipsastraea speciosa (previously Favia speciosa, and Phymastrea valenciennesi (previously Montastrea valenciennesi. Data from both histologically sectioned embryos and whole mounts are presented. One apparent difference between these two major groups is that before gastrulation the cells of the complex corals thus far described (mainly Acropora species spread and flatten to produce the so-called prawn chip, which lacks a blastocoel. Our present broad survey of robust and complex corals reveals that prawn chip formation is not a synapomorphy of complex corals, as Pavona Decussata does not form a prawn chip and has a well-developed blastocoel. Although prawn chip formation cannot be used to separate the two clades, none of the robust corals which we surveyed has such a stage. Many robust coral embryos pass through two periods of invagination, separated by a return to a spherical shape. However, only the second of these periods is associated with endoderm formation. We have therefore

  10. Amorphous calcium carbonate particles form coral skeletons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mass, Tali; Giuffre, Anthony J.; Sun, Chang-Yu; Stifler, Cayla A.; Frazier, Matthew J.; Neder, Maayan; Tamura, Nobumichi; Stan, Camelia V.; Marcus, Matthew A.; Gilbert, Pupa U. P. A.

    2017-09-01

    Do corals form their skeletons by precipitation from solution or by attachment of amorphous precursor particles as observed in other minerals and biominerals? The classical model assumes precipitation in contrast with observed “vital effects,” that is, deviations from elemental and isotopic compositions at thermodynamic equilibrium. Here, we show direct spectromicroscopy evidence in Stylophora pistillata corals that two amorphous precursors exist, one hydrated and one anhydrous amorphous calcium carbonate (ACC); that these are formed in the tissue as 400-nm particles; and that they attach to the surface of coral skeletons, remain amorphous for hours, and finally, crystallize into aragonite (CaCO3). We show in both coral and synthetic aragonite spherulites that crystal growth by attachment of ACC particles is more than 100 times faster than ion-by-ion growth from solution. Fast growth provides a distinct physiological advantage to corals in the rigors of the reef, a crowded and fiercely competitive ecosystem. Corals are affected by warming-induced bleaching and postmortem dissolution, but the finding here that ACC particles are formed inside tissue may make coral skeleton formation less susceptible to ocean acidification than previously assumed. If this is how other corals form their skeletons, perhaps this is how a few corals survived past CO2 increases, such as the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum that occurred 56 Mya.

  11. Isotropic microscale mechanical properties of coral skeletons

    OpenAIRE

    Pasquini, Luca; Molinari, Alan; Fantazzini, Paola; Dauphen, Yannicke; Cuif, Jean-Pierre; Levy, Oren; Dubinsky, Zvy; Caroselli, Erik; Prada, Fiorella; Goffredo, Stefano; Di Giosia, Matteo; Reggi, Michela; Falini, Giuseppe

    2015-01-01

    Scleractinian corals are a major source of biogenic calcium carbonate, yet the relationship between their skeletal microstructure and mechanical properties has been scarcely studied. In this work, the skeletons of two coral species: solitary Balanophyllia europaea and colonial Stylophora pistillata, were investigated by nanoindentation. The hardness HIT and Young's modulus EIT were determined from the analysis of several load–depth data on two perpendicular sections of the skeletons: longitud...

  12. Mitochondrial and nuclear genes suggest that stony corals are monophyletic but most families of stony corals are not (Order Scleractinia, Class Anthozoa, Phylum Cnidaria).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukami, Hironobu; Chen, Chaolun Allen; Budd, Ann F; Collins, Allen; Wallace, Carden; Chuang, Yao-Yang; Chen, Chienhsun; Dai, Chang-Feng; Iwao, Kenji; Sheppard, Charles; Knowlton, Nancy

    2008-09-16

    Modern hard corals (Class Hexacorallia; Order Scleractinia) are widely studied because of their fundamental role in reef building and their superb fossil record extending back to the Triassic. Nevertheless, interpretations of their evolutionary relationships have been in flux for over a decade. Recent analyses undermine the legitimacy of traditional suborders, families and genera, and suggest that a non-skeletal sister clade (Order Corallimorpharia) might be imbedded within the stony corals. However, these studies either sampled a relatively limited array of taxa or assembled trees from heterogeneous data sets. Here we provide a more comprehensive analysis of Scleractinia (127 species, 75 genera, 17 families) and various outgroups, based on two mitochondrial genes (cytochrome oxidase I, cytochrome b), with analyses of nuclear genes (ss-tubulin, ribosomal DNA) of a subset of taxa to test unexpected relationships. Eleven of 16 families were found to be polyphyletic. Strikingly, over one third of all families as conventionally defined contain representatives from the highly divergent "robust" and "complex" clades. However, the recent suggestion that corallimorpharians are true corals that have lost their skeletons was not upheld. Relationships were supported not only by mitochondrial and nuclear genes, but also often by morphological characters which had been ignored or never noted previously. The concordance of molecular characters and more carefully examined morphological characters suggests a future of greater taxonomic stability, as well as the potential to trace the evolutionary history of this ecologically important group using fossils.

  13. Mitochondrial and nuclear genes suggest that stony corals are monophyletic but most families of stony corals are not (Order Scleractinia, Class Anthozoa, Phylum Cnidaria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hironobu Fukami

    Full Text Available Modern hard corals (Class Hexacorallia; Order Scleractinia are widely studied because of their fundamental role in reef building and their superb fossil record extending back to the Triassic. Nevertheless, interpretations of their evolutionary relationships have been in flux for over a decade. Recent analyses undermine the legitimacy of traditional suborders, families and genera, and suggest that a non-skeletal sister clade (Order Corallimorpharia might be imbedded within the stony corals. However, these studies either sampled a relatively limited array of taxa or assembled trees from heterogeneous data sets. Here we provide a more comprehensive analysis of Scleractinia (127 species, 75 genera, 17 families and various outgroups, based on two mitochondrial genes (cytochrome oxidase I, cytochrome b, with analyses of nuclear genes (ss-tubulin, ribosomal DNA of a subset of taxa to test unexpected relationships. Eleven of 16 families were found to be polyphyletic. Strikingly, over one third of all families as conventionally defined contain representatives from the highly divergent "robust" and "complex" clades. However, the recent suggestion that corallimorpharians are true corals that have lost their skeletons was not upheld. Relationships were supported not only by mitochondrial and nuclear genes, but also often by morphological characters which had been ignored or never noted previously. The concordance of molecular characters and more carefully examined morphological characters suggests a future of greater taxonomic stability, as well as the potential to trace the evolutionary history of this ecologically important group using fossils.

  14. Isotropic microscale mechanical properties of coral skeletons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasquini, Luca; Molinari, Alan; Fantazzini, Paola; Dauphen, Yannicke; Cuif, Jean-Pierre; Levy, Oren; Dubinsky, Zvy; Caroselli, Erik; Prada, Fiorella; Goffredo, Stefano; Di Giosia, Matteo; Reggi, Michela; Falini, Giuseppe

    2015-05-06

    Scleractinian corals are a major source of biogenic calcium carbonate, yet the relationship between their skeletal microstructure and mechanical properties has been scarcely studied. In this work, the skeletons of two coral species:solitary Balanophyllia europaea and colonial Stylophora pistillata, were investigated by nanoindentation. The hardness HIT and Young's modulus E(IT) were determined from the analysis of several load-depth data on two perpendicular sections of the skeletons: longitudinal (parallel to the main growth axis) and transverse. Within the experimental and statistical uncertainty,the average values of the mechanical parameters are independent on the section's orientation. The hydration state of the skeletons did not affect the mechanical properties. The measured values, EIT in the 76-77 GPa range, and H(IT) in the 4.9–5.1 GPa range, are close to the ones expected for polycrystalline pure aragonite. Notably, a small difference in H(IT) is observed between the species. Different from corals, single-crystal aragonite and the nacreous layer of the seashell Atrina rigida exhibit clearly orientation-dependent mechanical properties. The homogeneous and isotropic mechanical behaviour of the coral skeletons at the microscale is correlated with the microstructure,observed by electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy, and with the X-ray diffraction patterns of the longitudinal and transverse sections.

  15. Bioassessment Tools for Stony Corals: Field Testing of Monitoring Protocols in the US Virgin Islands (St. Croix)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Survey protocols for assessing coral reef condition were field tested at 61 reef stations in St. Croix, US Virgin Islands (USVI) during 2006. Three observations for stony corals were recorded: species, size, and percent live tissue. Stony corals were selected because they are pri...

  16. Bioassessment Tools for Stony Corals: Statistical Evaluation of Candidate Metrics in the Florida Keys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Measurements of coral reef condition were collected from stations in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and Dry Tortugas National Park during 2003-04. Four assessment endpoints of reef condition were derived from transect censuses and measurements of stony corals: total s...

  17. Phylogenetic diversity of actinobacteria associated with soft coral Alcyonium gracllimum and stony coral Tubastraea coccinea in the East China Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Shan; Sun, Wei; Tang, Cen; Jin, Liling; Zhang, Fengli; Li, Zhiyong

    2013-07-01

    Actinobacteria are widely distributed in the marine environment. To date, few studies have been performed to explore the coral-associated Actinobacteria, and little is known about the diversity of coral-associated Actinobacteria. In this study, the actinobacterial diversity associated with one soft coral Alcyonium gracllimum and one stony coral Tubastraea coccinea collected from the East China Sea was investigated using both culture-independent and culture-dependent approaches. A total of 19 actinobacterial genera were detected in these two corals, among which nine genera (Corynebacterium, Dietzia, Gordonia, Kocuria, Microbacterium, Micrococcus, Mycobacterium, Streptomyces, and Candidatus Microthrix) were common, three genera (Cellulomonas, Dermatophilus, and Janibacter) were unique to the soft coral, and seven genera (Brevibacterium, Dermacoccus, Leucobacter, Micromonospora, Nocardioides, Rhodococcus, and Serinicoccus) were unique to the stony coral. This finding suggested that highly diverse Actinobacteria were associated with different types of corals. In particular, five actinobacterial genera (Cellulomonas, Dermacoccus, Gordonia, Serinicoccus, and Candidatus Microthrix) were recovered from corals for the first time, extending the known diversity of coral-associated Actinobacteria. This study shows that soft and stony corals host diverse Actinobacteria and can serve as a new source of marine actinomycetes.

  18. Akumal’s reefs: Stony coral communities along the developing Mexican Caribbean coastline

    OpenAIRE

    Roshan, Roy E

    2014-01-01

    Fringing coral reefs along coastlines experiencing rapid development and human population growth have declined worldwide because of human activity and of natural causes. The “Mayan Riviera” in Quintana Roo, México, attracts large numbers of tourists in part because it still retains some of the natural diversity and it is important to obtain baseline information to monitor changes over time in the area. In this paper, the condition of the stony corals in the developing coastline of the Akumal-...

  19. The Shallow-Water Stony Corals of the Netherlands Antilles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roos, P.J.

    1971-01-01

    Although the corals and reefs of Curaçao are fairly well known (VAN DER HORST 1927, Roos 1964, 1967), information about coral growth around the other islands of the Netherlands Antilles is still lacking. This paper offers the first comprehensive study of the reef corals of this area: Aruba, Curaçao

  20. Akumal ’s reefs: Stony coral communities along the developing Mexican Caribbean coastline

    OpenAIRE

    Roshan E Roy

    2004-01-01

    Fringing coral reefs along coastlines experiencing rapid development and human population growth have declined worldwide because of human activity and of natural causes.The "Mayan Riviera "in Quintana Roo,México,attracts large numbers of tourists in part because it still retains some of the natural diversity and it is important to obtain baseline information to monitor changes over time in the area.In this paper,the condition of the stony corals in the developing coastline of the Akumal-area ...

  1. Effects of elevated ammonium on the transcriptome of the stony coral Pocillopora damicornis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Chao; Zhou, Zhi; Zhang, Yidan; Chen, Guangmei; Yu, Xiaopeng; Ni, Xingzhen; Tang, Jia; Huang, Bo

    2017-01-15

    The survival of corals worldwide has been seriously threatened by eutrophication events concomitant with the increase in ocean pollution. In the present study, whole transcriptomes of the stony coral Pocillopora damicornis exposed to elevated ammonium were sequenced. A total of 121,366,983 pair-end reads were obtained, and 209,337 genes were assembled, including 42,399 coral-derived and 54,874 zooxanthella-derived genes. Further, a comparison of the control versus stress group revealed 6572 differentially expressed genes. For 1015 significantly upregulated genes, 24 GO terms were overrepresented, among which 3 terms related to apoptosis and cell death induction included one caspase, five bcl-2-like proteins, and two tumor necrosis factor receptor superfamily member genes. For 5557 significantly downregulated genes, the top 10 overrepresented terms were related to metabolism and signal transduction. These results indicate that apoptosis and cell death could be induced under elevated ammonium, suggesting that metabolic regulation and signal transduction might be involved in the reconstruction of the coral-zooxanthellae symbiotic balance in the stony coral P. damicornis. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. The digestive system of the stony coral Stylophora pistillata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raz-Bahat, M; Douek, J; Moiseeva, E; Peters, E C; Rinkevich, B

    2017-05-01

    Because hermatypic species use symbiotic algal photosynthesis, most of the literature in this field focuses on this autotrophic mode and very little research has studied the morphology of the coral's digestive system or the digestion process of particulate food. Using histology and histochemestry, our research reveals that Stylophora pistillata's digestive system is concentrated at the corals' peristome, actinopharynx and mesenterial filaments (MF). We used in-situ hybridization (ISH) of the RNA transcript of the gene that codes for the S. pistillata digestive enzyme, chymotrypsinogen, to shed light on the functionality of the digestive system. Both the histochemistry and the ISH pointed to the MF being specialized digestive organs, equipped with large numbers of acidophilic and basophilic granular gland cells, as well as acidophilic non-granular gland cells, some of which produce chymotrypsinogen. We identified two types of MF: short, trilobed MF and unilobed, long and convoluted MF. Each S. pistillata polyp harbors two long convoluted MF and 10 short MF. While the short MF have neither secreting nor stinging cells, each of the convoluted MF display gradual cytological changes along their longitudinal axis, alternating between stinging and secreting cells and three distinctive types of secretory cells. These observations indicate the important digestive role of the long convoluted MF. They also indicate the existence of novel feeding compartments in the gastric cavity of the polyp, primarily in the nutritionally active peristome, in the actinopharynx and in three regions of the MF that differ from each other in their cellular components, general morphology and chymotrypsinogen excretion.

  3. Rapid assessment of stony coral richness and condition on Saba Bank, Netherlands Antilles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheila A McKenna

    Full Text Available The benthic habitats of Saba Bank (17 degrees 25'N, 63 degrees 30'W are at risk from maritime traffic, especially oil tankers (e.g., anchoring. To mitigate this risk, information is needed on the biodiversity and location of habitats to develop a zone use plan. A rapid survey to document the biodiversity of macro-algae, sponges, corals and fishes was conducted. Here we report on the richness and condition of stony coral species at 18 select sites, and we test for the effects of bottom type, depth, and distance from platform edge. Species richness was visually assessed by roving scuba diver with voucher specimens of each species collected. Coral tissue was examined for bleaching and diseases. Thirty-three coral species were documented. There were no significant differences in coral composition among bottom types or depth classes (ANOSIM, P>0.05. There was a significant difference between sites (ANOSIM, P<0.05 near and far from the platform edge. The number of coral species observed ranged from zero and one in algal dominated habitats to 23 at a reef habitat on the southern edge of the Bank. Five reef sites had stands of Acropora cervicornis, a critically endangered species on the IUCN redlist. Bleaching was evident at 82% of the sites assessed with 43 colonies bleached. Only three coral colonies were observed to have disease. Combining our findings with that of other studies, a total of 43 species have been documented from Saba Bank. The coral assemblage on the bank is representative and typical of those found elsewhere in the Caribbean. Although our findings will help develop effective protection, more information is needed on Saba Bank to create a comprehensive zone use plan. Nevertheless, immediate action is warranted to protect the diverse coral reef habitats documented here, especially those containing A. cervicornis.

  4. Akumal ’s reefs: Stony coral communities along the developing Mexican Caribbean coastline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roshan E Roy

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Fringing coral reefs along coastlines experiencing rapid development and human population growth have declined worldwide because of human activity and of natural causes.The "Mayan Riviera "in Quintana Roo,México,attracts large numbers of tourists in part because it still retains some of the natural diversity and it is important to obtain baseline information to monitor changes over time in the area.In this paper,the condition of the stony corals in the developing coastline of the Akumal-area fore reefs is characterized at the start of the new millennium at two depths,and along an inferred sedimentation gradient.Transect surveys were conducted in five fringing reefs starting at haphazardly chosen points.with respect to species composition,live cover,colony density,relative exposure to TAS mats and,for one species (Diploria strigosa ,Dana,1848,tissue regression rates in the presence of TAS mats.Fish population density and herbivory rates are also assessed.Data from line intercept transects (n=74show that live stony coral cover,density and relative peripheral exposure of colonies to turf algal/sediment (TASmats were inversely related to an inferred sediment stress gradient at 13m.In 2000, live stony coral cover had decreased by 40-50%at two sites studied in 1990 by Muñoz-Chagín and de la Cruz- Agüero (1993.About half of this loss apparently occurred between 1998 and 2000 during an outbreak of white plague disease that mostly affected Montastraea faveolata ,and M.annularis .At a 13 m site,where inferred sedimentation rates are relatively high,time series photography of tagged Diploria strigosa ,(n=38showed an average loss of 70 cm 2 of live tissue/coral/year to encroachment by TAS mats during the same period.Whereas densities of carnivorous fishes and herbivores (echinoids,scarids,acanthurids and Microspathodon chrysurus in 2000 were low in belt transects at 10-19 m (n=106,turf-algal gardening pomacentrids were relatively common on these reefs

  5. Meandrina meandrites and Emblemariopsis diaphana, first record of an association between a stony coral and a fish, similar to anemone/fish relationships

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Butter, Maureen E.; Wapstra, Marlies; Dijk, van Eric

    1980-01-01

    An association is described between a Caribbean stony coral, Meandrina meandrites, and a chaenopsid fish, Emblemariopsis diaphana. Like in anemone/fish associations the coral tentacles provide shelter for the fish. Some observations were made, both in the field and in the laboratory, of the

  6. In vivo imaging of coral tissue and skeleton with optical coherence tomography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wangpraseurt, Daniel; Wentzel, Camilla; Jacques, Steven L; Wagner, Michael; Kühl, Michael

    2017-03-01

    Application of optical coherence tomography (OCT) for in vivo imaging of tissue and skeleton structure of intact living corals enabled the non-invasive visualization of coral tissue layers (endoderm versus ectoderm), skeletal cavities and special structures such as mesenterial filaments and mucus release from intact living corals. Coral host chromatophores containing green fluorescent protein-like pigment granules appeared hyper-reflective to near-infrared radiation allowing for excellent optical contrast in OCT and a rapid characterization of chromatophore size, distribution and abundance. In vivo tissue plasticity could be quantified by the linear contraction velocity of coral tissues upon illumination resulting in dynamic changes in the live coral tissue surface area, which varied by a factor of 2 between the contracted and expanded state of a coral. Our study provides a novel view on the in vivo organization of coral tissue and skeleton and highlights the importance of microstructural dynamics for coral ecophysiology. © 2017 The Author(s).

  7. Independent Temperature and Salinity Reconstruction from Coral Skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juillet-Leclerc, A.; Thiria, S.; Peron, C.

    2007-12-01

    Massive coral skeleton offers the best-suited material for reconstruction of tropical climate during the last century. Indeed, growth rate of some species is fast enough to provide high-resolution (monthly) sampling. The formation of a big colony may cover continuously several decades, even, several centuries. Chronology is made easy by annual growth layers. Finally, aragonite, which composes this skeleton, presents several proxies, such as isotopes and trace elements. However, the aragonite deposit is biologically controlled and all the proxies are influenced by both environmental and biologic factors. By example, temperature and light may affect both oxygen isotopes as well as Sr/Ca. Thus, these two parameters are difficult to separate from seasonal records. Such an effect may be neglected for annual averages or filtered records. Indeed, the difference of irradiation recorded during two consecutive years is much limited than between winter and summer (see PP24). It is the reason that annual and monthly reconstitutions will be conducted separately. In addition, it seems that other factors are the causes of the high variability shown by all the proxies. The common factor affecting them is related with metabolism. We suppose that proxies being measured from a powder collected from homogeneous material are fractionated by external factors through the same biologic filter during the time, but each of them differently because incorporated in the mineral by different ways. This is the reason that we used neural network (NN), which learns the behavior of several proxies submitted to one forcing during a known period. Then, the complex relationship recognized by neurons between the different proxies is used to "predict" the forcing during the past. The relationship between external factor and proxies remains hidden, but this could not be used for other colonies, even for other sampling from a same head. By this way, it is possible to calibrate temperature and salinity and

  8. Constraining calcium isotope fractionation (d44/40Ca) in modern and fossil scleractinian coral skeleton

    OpenAIRE

    Pretet Chloé; Samankassou Elias; Felis Thomas; Reynaud Stéphanie; Böhm Florian; Eisenhauer Anton; Ferrier-Pagès Christine; Gattuso Jean-Pierre; Camoin Gilbert

    2013-01-01

    The present study investigates the influence of environmental (temperature salinity) and biological (growth rate inter generic variations) parameters on calcium isotope fractionation (d44/40Ca) in scleractinian coral skeleton to better constrain this record. Previous studies focused on the d44/40Ca record in different marine organisms to reconstruct seawater composition or temperature but only few studies investigated corals. This study presents measurements performed on modern corals from n...

  9. Constraining calcium isotope fractionation (δ44/40Ca) in modern and fossil scleractinian coral skeleton

    OpenAIRE

    Pretet, Chloé; Samankassou, Elias; Felis, Thomas; Reynaud, Stéphanie; Böhm, Florian; Eisenhauer, Anton; Ferrier-Pagès, Christine; Gattuso, Jean-Pierre; Camoin, Gilbert

    2013-01-01

    The present study investigates the influence of environmental (temperature, salinity) and biological (growth rate, inter-generic variations) parameters on calcium isotope fractionation (δ44/40Ca) in scleractinian coral skeleton to better constrain this record. Previous studies focused on the δ44/40Ca record in different marine organisms to reconstruct seawater composition or temperature, but only few studies investigated corals. This study presents measurements performed on modern corals f...

  10. Yolk formation in a stony coral Euphyllia ancora (Cnidaria, Anthozoa): insight into the evolution of vitellogenesis in nonbilaterian animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shikina, Shinya; Chen, Chieh-Jhen; Chung, Yi-Jou; Shao, Zi-Fan; Liou, Jhe-Yu; Tseng, Hua-Pin; Lee, Yan-Horn; Chang, Ching-Fong

    2013-09-01

    Vitellogenin (Vg) is a major yolk protein precursor in numerous oviparous animals. Numerous studies in bilateral oviparous animals have shown that Vg sequences are conserved across taxa and that Vgs are synthesized by somatic-cell lineages, transported to and accumulated in oocytes, and eventually used for supporting embryogenesis. In nonbilateral animals (Polifera, Cnidaria, and Ctenophora), which are regarded as evolutionarily primitive, although Vg cDNA has been identified in 2 coral species from Cnidaria, relatively little is known about the characteristics of yolk formation in their bodies. To address this issue, we identified and characterized 2 cDNA encoding yolk proteins, Vg and egg protein (Ep), in the stony coral Euphyllia ancora. RT-PCR analysis revealed that expression levels of both Vg and Ep increased in the female colonies as coral approached the spawning season. In addition, high levels of both Vg and Ep transcripts were detected in the putative ovarian tissue, as determined by tissue distribution analysis. Further analyses using mRNA in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry determined that, within the putative ovarian tissue, these yolk proteins are synthesized in the mesenterial somatic cells but not in oocytes themselves. Furthermore, Vg proteins that accumulated in eggs were most likely consumed during the coral embryonic development, as assessed by immunoblotting. The characteristics of Vg that we identified in corals were somewhat similar to those of Vg in bilaterian oviparous animals, raising the hypothesis that such characteristics were likely present in the oogenesis of some common ancestor prior to divergence of the cnidarian and bilaterian lineages.

  11. Evolutionary and biogeographical implications of degraded LAGLIDADG endonuclease functionality and group I intron occurrence in stony corals (Scleractinia) and mushroom corals (Corallimorpharia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Celis, Juan Sebastián; Edgell, David R; Stelbrink, Björn; Wibberg, Daniel; Hauffe, Torsten; Blom, Jochen; Kalinowski, Jörn; Wilke, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Group I introns and homing endonuclease genes (HEGs) are mobile genetic elements, capable of invading target sequences in intron-less genomes. LAGLIDADG HEGs are the largest family of endonucleases, playing a key role in the mobility of group I introns in a process known as 'homing'. Group I introns and HEGs are rare in metazoans, and can be mainly found inserted in the COXI gene of some sponges and cnidarians, including stony corals (Scleractinia) and mushroom corals (Corallimorpharia). Vertical and horizontal intron transfer mechanisms have been proposed as explanations for intron occurrence in cnidarians. However, the central role of LAGLIDADG motifs in intron mobility mechanisms remains poorly understood. To resolve questions regarding the evolutionary origin and distribution of group I introns and HEGs in Scleractinia and Corallimorpharia, we examined intron/HEGs sequences within a comprehensive phylogenetic framework. Analyses of LAGLIDADG motif conservation showed a high degree of degradation in complex Scleractinia and Corallimorpharia. Moreover, the two motifs lack the respective acidic residues necessary for metal-ion binding and catalysis, potentially impairing horizontal intron mobility. In contrast, both motifs are highly conserved within robust Scleractinia, indicating a fully functional endonuclease capable of promoting horizontal intron transference. A higher rate of non-synonymous substitutions (Ka) detected in the HEGs of complex Scleractinia and Corallimorpharia suggests degradation of the HEG, whereas lower Ka rates in robust Scleractinia are consistent with a scenario of purifying selection. Molecular-clock analyses and ancestral inference of intron type indicated an earlier intron insertion in complex Scleractinia and Corallimorpharia in comparison to robust Scleractinia. These findings suggest that the lack of horizontal intron transfers in the former two groups is related to an age-dependent degradation of the endonuclease activity. Moreover

  12. Diversity partitioning of stony corals across multiple spatial scales around Zanzibar Island, Tanzania.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Assaf Zvuloni

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The coral reefs of Zanzibar Island (Unguja, Tanzania encompass a considerable proportion of the global coral-reef diversity and are representative of the western Indian Ocean region. Unfortunately, these reefs have been recently subjected to local and regional disturbances. The objectives of this study were to determine whether there are potentially non-random processes forcing the observed coral diversity patterns, and highlight where and at which spatial scales these processes might be most influential. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A hierarchical (nested sampling design was employed across three spatial scales, ranging from transects (coral diversity patterns. Two of the four sites, Chumbe and Mnemba, were located within Marine Protected Areas (MPAs, while the other two sites, Changuu and Bawe, were not protected. Additive partitioning of coral diversity was used to separate regional (total diversity (gamma into local alpha diversity and among-sample beta diversity components. Individual-based null models were used to identify deviations from random distribution across the three spatial scales. We found that Chumbe and Mnemba had similar diversity components to those predicted by the null models. However, the diversity at Changuu and Bawe was lower than expected at all three spatial scales tested. Consequently, the relative contribution of the among-site diversity component was significantly greater than expected. Applying partitioning analysis for each site separately revealed that the within-transect diversity component in Changuu was significantly lower than the null expectation. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The non-random outcome of the partitioning analyses helped to identify the among-sites scale (i.e., 10's of kilometers and the within-transects scale (i.e., a few meters; especially at Changuu as spatial boundaries within which to examine the processes that may

  13. Molecular and morphological supertree of stony corals (Anthozoa: Scleractinia) using matrix representation parsimony.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerr, Alexander M

    2005-11-01

    The supertree algorithm matrix representation with parsimony was used to combine existing hypotheses of coral relationships and provide the most comprehensive species-level estimate of scleractinian phylogeny, comprised of 353 species (27% of extant species), 141 genera (63%) and 23 families (92%) from all seven suborders. The resulting supertree offers a guide for future studies in coral systematics by highlighting regions of concordance and conflict in existing source phylogenies. It should also prove useful in formal comparative studies of character evolution. Phylogenetic effort within Scleractinia has been taxonomically uneven, with a third of studies focussing on the Acroporidae or its most diverse genera. Sampling has also been geographically non-uniform, as tropical, reef-forming taxa have been considered twice as often as non-reef species. The supertree indicated that source trees concur on numerous aspects of coral relationships, such as the division between robust versus complex corals and the distant relationship between families in Archaeocoeniina. The supertree also supported the existence of a large, taxonomically diverse and monophyletic group of corals with many Atlantic representatives having exsert corallites. Another large, unanticipated clade consisted entirely of solitary deep-water species from three families. Important areas of ambiguity include the relationship of Astrocoeniidae to Pocilloporidae and the relative positions of several, mostly deep-water genera of Caryophylliidae. Conservative grafting of species at the base of congeneric groups with uncontroversial monophyletic status resulted in a more comprehensive, though less resolved tree of 1016 taxa.

  14. Diversity partitioning of stony corals across multiple spatial scales around Zanzibar Island, Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zvuloni, Assaf; van Woesik, Robert; Loya, Yossi

    2010-03-29

    The coral reefs of Zanzibar Island (Unguja, Tanzania) encompass a considerable proportion of the global coral-reef diversity and are representative of the western Indian Ocean region. Unfortunately, these reefs have been recently subjected to local and regional disturbances. The objectives of this study were to determine whether there are potentially non-random processes forcing the observed coral diversity patterns, and highlight where and at which spatial scales these processes might be most influential. A hierarchical (nested) sampling design was employed across three spatial scales, ranging from transects (Protected Areas (MPAs), while the other two sites, Changuu and Bawe, were not protected. Additive partitioning of coral diversity was used to separate regional (total) diversity (gamma) into local alpha diversity and among-sample beta diversity components. Individual-based null models were used to identify deviations from random distribution across the three spatial scales. We found that Chumbe and Mnemba had similar diversity components to those predicted by the null models. However, the diversity at Changuu and Bawe was lower than expected at all three spatial scales tested. Consequently, the relative contribution of the among-site diversity component was significantly greater than expected. Applying partitioning analysis for each site separately revealed that the within-transect diversity component in Changuu was significantly lower than the null expectation. The non-random outcome of the partitioning analyses helped to identify the among-sites scale (i.e., 10's of kilometers) and the within-transects scale (i.e., a few meters; especially at Changuu) as spatial boundaries within which to examine the processes that may interact and disproportionately differentiate coral diversity. In light of coral community compositions and diversity patterns we strongly recommend that Bawe be declared a MPA.

  15. 3D photogrammetry quantifies growth and external erosion of individual coral colonies and skeletons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Renata; Figueira, Will F; Pratchett, Morgan S; Boube, Tatiana; Adam, Arne; Kobelkowsky-Vidrio, Tania; Doo, Steve S; Atwood, Trisha Brooke; Byrne, Maria

    2017-12-01

    Growth and contraction of ecosystem engineers, such as trees, influence ecosystem structure and function. On coral reefs, methods to measure small changes in the structure of microhabitats, driven by growth of coral colonies and contraction of skeletons, are extremely limited. We used 3D reconstructions to quantify changes in the external structure of coral colonies of tabular Acropora spp., the dominant habitat-forming corals in shallow exposed reefs across the Pacific. The volume and surface area of live colonies increased by 21% and 22%, respectively, in 12 months, corresponding to a mean annual linear extension of 5.62 cm yr-1 (±1.81 SE). The volume and surface area of dead skeletons decreased by 52% and 47%, respectively, corresponding to a mean decline in linear extension of -29.56 cm yr-1 (±7.08 SE), which accounted for both erosion and fragmentation of dead colonies. This is the first study to use 3D photogrammetry to assess fine-scale structural changes of entire individual colonies in situ, quantifying coral growth and contraction. The high-resolution of the technique allows for detection of changes on reef structure faster than other non-intrusive approaches. These results improve our capacity to measure the drivers underpinning ecosystem biodiversity, status and trajectory.

  16. Modeling Surface Water Transport in the Central Pacific Ocean With 129I Records From Coral Skeletons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, W.; Biddulph, D. L.; Russell, J. L.; Burr, G. S.; Jull, T. J.; Correge, T.; Roeder, B.

    2008-12-01

    129I occurs naturally in extremely low abundance via cosmic ray interactions in the atmosphere as well as by spontaneous fission of uranium. Oceanic concentrations of 129I have risen by several orders of magnitude during the last half century largely from environmental pollution coming from several point-source nuclear fuel reprocessing plants. In the Pacific basin, much of the increase has apparently come from the Hanford Nuclear reprocessing plant in the United States, with iodine primarily arriving via the Columbia River. Coral skeletons preserve records of 129I concentration of the surface waters from which they were deposited, yielding records with annual resolution or better. We will present three such records from different locations in the Pacific Ocean: the Solomon Islands, Easter Island and Clipperton Atoll. For this study, drill cores from living massive coral skeletons of the species Porites Lobata were collected from these sites. 129I/127I values were measured using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) at the University of Arizona with an NEC 3 MV Pelletron accelerator. Results from the analysis of the corals will be compared to the distribution of other mixed-layer tracers (chloro-fluorocarbons and tritium) collected during the World Ocean Circulation Experiment cruises conducted between 1990 and 2002. The 129I/127I records observed in these corals will also be compared to tracer transit time calculations determined from a 20th century simulation of the GFDL coupled-climate passive-tracer model.

  17. Highly structured prokaryote communities exist within the skeleton of coral colonies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcelino, Vanessa R; van Oppen, Madeleine Jh; Verbruggen, Heroen

    2017-10-20

    Physiological performance, disease and bleaching prevalence are often patchy within individual coral colonies. These responses are largely influenced by coral-associated microbes, but how the coral microbiome changes over small spatial scales has never been quantified before. We performed a high-resolution quantification of the spatial scale of microbial species turnover (β-diversity) within skeletons of boulder-forming Porites corals. We found very strong prokaryotic species turnover across spatial scales ranging from 4 mm to 2 m within individual colonies, possibly resulting from dispersal limitation and microbial interactions. The microalgal community was more homogeneously distributed, which is likely due to these photosymbionts actively boring through limestone. Our findings highlight unprecedented levels of intra-colony heterogeneity in the skeletal microbiome, which has implications for the experimental design of coral microbiome studies and for our understanding of coral resilience.The ISME Journal advance online publication, 20 October 2017; doi:10.1038/ismej.2017.164.

  18. Bioerosion by euendoliths decreases in phosphate-enriched skeletons of living corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godinot, C.; Tribollet, A.

    2012-07-01

    While the role of microboring organisms, or euendoliths, is relatively well known in dead coral skeletons, their function in live corals remains poorly understood. They are suggested to behave like ectosymbionts or parasites, impacting their host's health. However, the species composition of microboring communities, their abundance and dynamics in live corals under various environmental conditions have never been explored. Here, the effect of phosphate enrichment on boring microorganisms in live corals was tested for the first time. Stylophora pistillata nubbins were exposed to 3 different treatments (phosphate concentrations of 0, 0.5 and 2.5 μmol l-1) during 15 weeks. After 15 weeks of phosphate enrichment, petrographic thin sections were prepared for observation with light microscopy, and additional samples were examined with scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Euendoliths comprised mainly phototrophic Ostreobium sp. filaments. Rare filaments of heterotrophic fungi were also observed. Filaments were densely distributed in the central part of nubbins, and less abundant towards the apex. Unexpectedly, there was a visible reduction of filament abundance in the most recently calcified apical part of phosphate-enriched nubbins. The overall abundance of euendoliths significantly decreased, from 9.12 ± 1.09% of the skeletal surface area in unenriched corals, to 5.81 ± 0.77% and 5.27 ± 0.34% in 0.5 and 2.5 μmol l-1-phosphate enriched corals respectively. SEM observations confirmed this decrease. Recent studies have shown that phosphate enrichment increases coral skeletal growth and metabolic rates, while it decreases skeletal density and resilience to mechanical stress. We thus hypothesize that increased skeletal growth in the presence of phosphate enrichment occurred too fast for an effective expansion of euendolith growth. They could not keep up with coral growth, so they became diluted in the apex areas as nubbins grew with phosphate enrichment. Results from the

  19. The geochemistry of deep-sea coral skeletons: a review of vital effects and applications for palaeoceanography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Laura F.; Adkins, Jess F.; Frank, Norbert; Gagon, Alexander C.; Prouty, Nancy G.; Roark, E. Brendan; van de Flierdt, Tina

    2014-01-01

    Deep-sea corals were discovered over a century ago, but it is only over recent years that focused efforts have been made to explore the history of the oceans using the geochemistry of their skeletal remains. They offer a promising archive of past oceanic environments given their global distribution, layered growth patterns, longevity and preservation as well as our ability to date them using radiometric techniques. This paper provides an overview of the current state-of-the-art in terms of geochemical approaches to using deep-sea coral skeletons to explore the history of the ocean. Deep-sea coral skeletons have a wide array of morphologies (e.g. solitary cup corals, branching colonial corals) and materials (calcite, aragonite and proteins). As such their biomineralization strategies are diverse, leading to complex geochemistry within coral skeletons. Notwithstanding these complications, progress has been made on developing methods for reconstructing the oceanographic environment in the past using trace elements and isotopic methods. Promising approaches within certain coral groups include clumped isotopes and Mg/Li for temperature reconstructions, boron isotopes and radiocarbon for carbon cycling, εNd, and radiocarbon for circulation studies and δ15N, P/Ca and Ba/Ca for nutrient tracer studies. Likewise there is now a range of techniques for dating deep-sea corals skeletons (e.g. U-series, radiocarbon), and determining their growth rates (e.g. radiocarbon and 210Pb). Dating studies on historic coral populations in the Atlantic, Southern Ocean and Pacific point to climate and environmental changes being dominant controls on coral populations over millennial and orbital timescales. This paper provides a review of a range of successes and promising approaches. It also highlights areas in which further research would likely provide new insights into biomineralization, palaeoceanography and distribution of past coral populations.

  20. Coral skeletons provide historical evidence of phosphorus runoff on the great barrier reef.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallela, Jennie; Lewis, Stephen E; Croke, Barry

    2013-01-01

    Recently, the inshore reefs of the Great Barrier Reef have declined rapidly because of deteriorating water quality. Increased catchment runoff is one potential culprit. The impacts of land-use on coral growth and reef health however are largely circumstantial due to limited long-term data on water quality and reef health. Here we use a 60 year coral core record to show that phosphorus contained in the skeletons (P/Ca) of long-lived, near-shore Porites corals on the Great Barrier Reef correlates with annual records of fertiliser application and particulate phosphorus loads in the adjacent catchment. Skeletal P/Ca also correlates with Ba/Ca, a proxy for fluvial sediment loading, again linking near-shore phosphorus records with river runoff. Coral core records suggest that phosphorus levels increased 8 fold between 1949 and 2008 with the greatest levels coinciding with periods of high fertiliser-phosphorus use. Periods of high P/Ca correspond with intense agricultural activity and increased fertiliser application in the river catchment following agricultural expansion and replanting after cyclone damage. Our results demonstrate how coral P/Ca records can be used to assess terrestrial nutrient loading of vulnerable near-shore reefs.

  1. Coral skeletons provide historical evidence of phosphorus runoff on the great barrier reef.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennie Mallela

    Full Text Available Recently, the inshore reefs of the Great Barrier Reef have declined rapidly because of deteriorating water quality. Increased catchment runoff is one potential culprit. The impacts of land-use on coral growth and reef health however are largely circumstantial due to limited long-term data on water quality and reef health. Here we use a 60 year coral core record to show that phosphorus contained in the skeletons (P/Ca of long-lived, near-shore Porites corals on the Great Barrier Reef correlates with annual records of fertiliser application and particulate phosphorus loads in the adjacent catchment. Skeletal P/Ca also correlates with Ba/Ca, a proxy for fluvial sediment loading, again linking near-shore phosphorus records with river runoff. Coral core records suggest that phosphorus levels increased 8 fold between 1949 and 2008 with the greatest levels coinciding with periods of high fertiliser-phosphorus use. Periods of high P/Ca correspond with intense agricultural activity and increased fertiliser application in the river catchment following agricultural expansion and replanting after cyclone damage. Our results demonstrate how coral P/Ca records can be used to assess terrestrial nutrient loading of vulnerable near-shore reefs.

  2. Two Centuries of Coral Skeletons from the Northern South China Sea Record Mercury Emissions from Modern Chinese Wars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Ruoyu; Hintelmann, Holger; Liu, Yi; Li, Xiaohua; Dimock, Brian

    2016-06-07

    The contemporary mercury (Hg) cycle in the world's oceans has been greatly affected by human activities. However, we are still lacking reliable, long-term, and continuous records of Hg in seawater. Here, we report for the first time on using annually banded Porites coral skeletons from the northern South China Sea (SCS) as an archive for recording changes of seawater dissolved Hg spanning the past two centuries. We developed a combustion-trapping method to preconcentrate ultratrace Hg concentrations from coral aragonitic skeletons for highly accurate total Hg measurements. Results show that Hg in the coral skeletons ranges from 0.3 to 5.1 pmol/g and is discriminated against Ca during coral skeletal calcification. Preindustrial (1798-1832) Hg levels in coral skeletons were found to be approximately 0.5 pmol/g. The highest Hg concentrations (3-5 pmol/g) were observed during the WWII period (1933-1942). Other distinct Hg maxima (∼3 pmol/g) are observed for the periods 1833-1847, 1858-1862, 1918-1927, 1978-1982, and 1988-1992, with the first four coinciding with contemporary Chinese wars. Our study suggests that the production and use of ammunitions in those wars likely account for the primary Hg emission sources in the northern SCS before 1950, and coral is potentially a robust indicator of historical, regional Hg contamination events.

  3. Suppression of NF-κB signal pathway by NLRC3-like protein in stony coral Acropora aculeus under heat stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Zhi; Wu, Yibo; Zhang, Chengkai; Li, Can; Chen, Guangmei; Yu, Xiaopeng; Shi, Xiaowei; Xu, Yanlai; Wang, Lingui; Huang, Bo

    2017-08-01

    Heat stress is the most common factor for coral bleaching, which has increased both in frequency and severity due to global warming. In the present study, the stony coral Acropora aculeus was subjected to acute heat stress and entire transcriptomes were sequenced via the next generation sequencing platform. Four paired-end libraries were constructed and sequenced in two groups, including a control and a heat stress group. A total of 120,319,751 paired-end reads with lengths of 2 × 100 bp were assembled and 55,021 coral-derived genes were obtained. After read mapping and abundance estimation, 9110 differentially expressed genes were obtained in the comparison between the control and heat stress group, including 4465 significantly upregulated and 4645 significantly downregulated genes. Twenty-three GO terms in the Biological Process category were overrepresented for significantly upregulated genes, and divided into six groups according to their relationship. These three groups were related to the NF-κB signal pathway, and the remaining three groups were relevant for pathogen response, immunocyte activation and protein ubiquitination. Forty-three common genes were found in four GO terms, which were directly related to the NF-κB signal pathway. These included 2 NACHT, LRR, PYD domains-containing protein, 5 nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein, 29 NLRC3-like protein, 4 NLRC5-like protein, and 3 uncharacterized protein. For significantly downregulated genes, 27 overrepresented GO terms were found in the Biological Process category, which were relevant to protein ubiquitination and ATP metabolism. Our results indicate that heat stress suppressed the immune response level via the NLRC3-like protein, the fine-tuning of protein turnover activity, and ATP metabolism. This might disrupt the balance of coral-zooxanthellae symbiosis and result in the bleaching of the coral A. aculeus. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Impact of anthropogenic disturbances on the diversity of shallow stony corals in the Veracruz Reef System National Park Impacto de perturbaciones antrópicas sobre la diversidad de corales pétreos superficiales en el Parque Nacional Sistema Arrecifal veracruzano

    OpenAIRE

    Carla V. Gutiérrez-Ruiz; Miguel A. M. Román-Vives; Vergara, Carlos H.; Ernesto I. Badano

    2011-01-01

    Anthropogenic disturbances may affect the development and maintenance of coral reefs by promoting diseases and other syndromes. In turn, this may cause local decreases in coral species diversity. In this study, we compared the prevalence of syndromes (including diseases and non-disease syndromes) and the diversity of stony coral species between reefs located close (Sacrificios reef) and far away (Santiaguillo reef) of the port of Veracruz, Mexico. The prevalence of syndromes was higher at Sac...

  5. Determination of prey capture rates in the stony coral Galaxea fascicularis: a critical reconsideration of the clearance rate concept

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Osinga, R.; Delft, van S.; Lewaru, M.W.; Janse, M.; Verreth, J.A.J.

    2012-01-01

    In order to determine optimal feeding regimes for captive corals, prey capture by the scleractinian coral Galaxea fascicularis was determined by measuring clearance of prey items from the surrounding water. Colonies of G. fascicularis (sized between 200 and 400 polyps) were incubated in 1300 ml

  6. Bioassessment Tools for Stony Corals: Monitoring Approaches and Proposed Sampling Plan for the U.S. Virgin Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    This document describes three general approaches to the design of a sampling plan for biological monitoring of coral reefs. Status assessment, trend detection and targeted monitoring each require a different approach to site selection and statistical analysis. For status assessm...

  7. Radiocarbon variability recorded in coral skeletons from the northwest of Luzon Island, Philippines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirabayashi, Shoko; Yokoyama, Yusuke; Suzuki, Atsushi; Miyairi, Yosuke; Aze, Takahiro; Siringan, Fernando; Maeda, Yasuo

    2017-12-01

    The North Equatorial Current (NEC) bifurcates at the eastern coast of the Philippines and moves northward as the Kuroshio, a North Pacific western boundary current. The NEC bifurcation point and Kuroshio variability are known to be affected by changes in climate such as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation and the pacific decadal oscillation. However, observational data are not sufficient to examine the mechanisms of decadal fluctuation. Here, we report seasonal radiocarbon data recorded from 1968 to 1995 in coral skeletons northwest of Luzon Island. The data suggest that the East Asian winter monsoon is a dominant factor in the seasonal fluctuations in water mass northwest of Luzon Island. Compared with other coral records reported for Guam, Ishigaki, Con Dao, and Hon Tre Island, the data suggest that the area of the Kuroshio loop current through the Luzon Strait decreased from the 1970s to 1980s as a result of the change in Kuroshio transport and the migration of the NEC bifurcation latitude after a regime shift in 1976.

  8. Molecular cloning and characterization of a steroidogenic enzyme, 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 14, from the stony coral Euphyllia ancora (Cnidaria, Anthozoa).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shikina, Shinya; Chung, Yi-Jou; Chiu, Yi-Ling; Huang, Yi-Jie; Lee, Yan-Horn; Chang, Ching-Fong

    2016-03-01

    Sex steroids play a fundamental role not only in reproduction but also in various other biological processes in vertebrates. Although the presence of sex steroids has been confirmed in cnidarians (e.g., coral, sea anemone, jellyfish, and hydra), which are basal metazoans, only a few studies to date have characterized steroidogenesis-related genes in cnidarians. Based on a transcriptomic analysis of the stony coral Euphyllia ancora, we identified the steroidogenic enzyme 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 14 (17beta-hsd 14), an oxidative enzyme that catalyzes the NAD(+)-dependent inactivation of estrogen/androgen (estradiol to estrone and testosterone to androstenedione) in mammals. Phylogenetic analysis showed that E. ancora 17beta-Hsd 14 (Ea17beta-Hsd 14) clusters with other animal 17beta-HSD 14s but not with other members of the 17beta-HSD family. Subsequent quantitative RT-PCR analysis revealed a lack of correlation of Ea17beta-hsd 14 transcript levels with the coral's reproductive cycle. In addition, Ea17beta-hsd 14 transcript and protein were detected in all tissues examined, such as the tentacles, mesenterial filaments, and gonads, at similar levels in both sexes, as determined by quantitative RT-PCR analysis and Western blotting with an anti-Ea17beta-Hsd 14 antibody. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that Ea17beta-Hsd 14 is mainly distributed in the endodermal regions of the polyps, but the protein was also observed in all tissues examined. These results suggest that Ea17beta-Hsd 14 is involved in important functions that commonly occur in endodermal cells or has multiple functions in different tissues. Our data provide information for comparison with advanced animals as well as insight into the evolution of steroidogenesis-related genes in metazoans. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Some Physical, Chemical, and Biological Parameters of Samples of Scleractinium Coral Aquaculture Skeleton Used for Reconstruction/Engineering of the Bone Tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popov, A A; Sergeeva, N S; Britaev, T A; Komlev, V S; Sviridova, I K; Kirsanova, V A; Akhmedova, S A; Dgebuadze, P Yu; Teterina, A Yu; Kuvshinova, E A; Schanskii, Ya D

    2015-08-01

    Physical and chemical (phase and chemical composition, dynamics of resorption, and strength properties), and biological (cytological compatibility and scaffold properties of the surface) properties of samples of scleractinium coral skeletons from aquacultures of three types and corresponding samples of natural coral skeletons (Pocillopora verrucosa, Acropora formosa, and Acropora nobilis) were studied. Samples of scleractinium coral aquaculture skeleton of A. nobilis, A. formosa, and P. verrucosa met the requirements (all study parameters) to materials for osteoplasty and 3D-scaffolds for engineering of bone tissue.

  10. Impact of seawater acidification on pH at the tissue-skeleton interface and calcification in reef corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venn, Alexander A; Tambutté, Eric; Holcomb, Michael; Laurent, Julien; Allemand, Denis; Tambutté, Sylvie

    2013-01-29

    Insight into the response of reef corals and other major marine calcifiers to ocean acidification is limited by a lack of knowledge about how seawater pH and carbonate chemistry impact the physiological processes that drive biomineralization. Ocean acidification is proposed to reduce calcification rates in corals by causing declines in internal pH at the calcifying tissue-skeleton interface where biomineralization takes place. Here, we performed an in vivo study on how partial-pressure CO(2)-driven seawater acidification impacts intracellular pH in coral calcifying cells and extracellular pH in the fluid at the tissue-skeleton interface [subcalicoblastic medium (SCM)] in the coral Stylophora pistillata. We also measured calcification in corals grown under the same conditions of seawater acidification by measuring lateral growth of colonies and growth of aragonite crystals under the calcifying tissue. Our findings confirm that seawater acidification decreases pH of the SCM, but this decrease is gradual relative to the surrounding seawater, leading to an increasing pH gradient between the SCM and seawater. Reductions in calcification rate, both at the level of crystals and whole colonies, were only observed in our lowest pH treatment when pH was significantly depressed in the calcifying cells in addition to the SCM. Overall, our findings suggest that reef corals may mitigate the effects of seawater acidification by regulating pH in the SCM, but they also highlight the role of calcifying cell pH homeostasis in determining the response of reef corals to changes in external seawater pH and carbonate chemistry.

  11. Effect of photosynthetic light dosage on carbon isotope composition in the coral skeleton: Long-term culture of Porites spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omata, Tamano; Suzuki, Atsushi; Sato, Takanori; Minoshima, Kayo; Nomaru, Eriko; Murakami, Akio; Murayama, Shohei; Kawahata, Hodaka; Maruyama, Tadashi

    2008-06-01

    Whereas the oxygen isotope ratio of the coral skeleton is used for reconstruction of past information on seawater, the carbon isotope ratio is considered a proxy for physiological processes, principally photosynthesis and respiration. However, the fractionation of carbon isotopes in biogenic carbonate such as coral skeleton is still unclear. We conducted a long-term culture experiment of Porites spp. corals at different light dosages (light intensity, 100, 300, or 500 μmol m-2 s-1; daily light period, 10 or 12 h) at 25 ± 0.6°C to examine the contribution of photosynthetic activity to skeletal carbon isotope composition. Corals were grown in sand-filtered seawater and not fed; thus, they subsisted from photosynthesis of symbiotic algae. As the daily dose of photosynthetically active radiation increased, the rate of annual extension also increased. Mean isotope compositions shifted; the carbon isotope compositions (δ13C) became heavier and the oxygen isotope compositions (δ18O) became lighter at higher radiation dose. Skeletal δ18O decrease coincided with increasing skeletal growth rate, indicating the influence of so-called kinetic isotope effects. The observed δ13C increase should be subject to both kinetic and metabolic isotope effects, with the latter reflecting skeletal δ13C enrichment due to photosynthesis by symbiotic algae. Using a vector approach in the δ13C-δ18O plane, we discriminated between kinetic and metabolic isotope effects on δ13C. The calculated δ13C changes from metabolic isotope effects were light dose dependent. The δ13C fractionation curve related to metabolic isotope effects is very similar to the photosynthesis-irradiance curve, indicating the direct contribution of photosynthetic activity to metabolic isotope effects. In contrast, δ13C fractionation related to kinetic isotope effects gradually increased as the growth rate increased. Our experiment demonstrated that the kinetic and metabolic isotope effects in coral skeleton

  12. Identification of the chemical form of sulfur compounds in the Japanese pink coral (Corallium elatius) skeleton using μ-XRF/XAS speciation mapping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamenori, Yusuke; Yoshimura, Toshihiro; Luan, Nguyen Trong; Hasegawa, Hiroshi; Suzuki, Atsushi; Kawahata, Hodaka; Iwasaki, Nozomu

    2014-05-01

    The distributions and chemical forms of sulfur compounds in the skeleton of Japanese pink coral (Corallium elatius) were investigated using X-ray spectroscopic techniques combined with micro-focused soft X-ray radiation. Microscopic X-ray fluorescence/soft X-ray photoabsorption (μ-XRF/XAS) speciation mapping clarified that sulfate is the primary species in the coral skeleton, with minor amounts of organic sulfur, whereas both sulfate and organic sulfur coexist in coenenchyme. Analysis of the post-edge region of the XAS spectra confirmed that sulfate ions in the coral skeleton are mainly in the form of gypsum-like inorganic sulfate substituting for the carbonate ions in the calcite skeleton. The sulfate concentration was negatively correlated with the magnesium concentration and positively correlated with that of phosphorus. Speciation mapping of sulfate in the coral skeleton showed clear fluctuations with sulfate concentrations being higher at dark bands, whereas the small amount of organic sulfur had unclear dark/bright bands. These results suggest that the little organic sulfur that is present is contained in the organic matter embedded in the biocrystal of coral skeleton. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Reclutamiento de corales pétreos en arrecifes coralinos a diferentes distancias de fuentes de contaminación en La Habana, Cuba Stony coral recruitment in coral reefs at different distances from pollution sources in Habana, Cuba

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Alcolado-Prieto

    2012-09-01

    í como entre de las distintas fechas de muestreo. El análisis de variancia bifactorial no mostró interacción significativa espacio-tiemporal. Malecón, sitio más contaminado, presentó menor reclutamiento y mayor presencia de especies consideradas indicadoras de contaminación orgánica, sedimentación y abrasión. Las densidades fueron mayores en Octubre 2007 y menores en Mayo 2008, al parecer influenciados por las épocas de reproducción y la acción de los frentes fríos respectivamente. El mayor predominio y abundancia de reclutas de S. siderea, S. radians y P. astreoides parece responder a sus elevados potenciales reproductivos y altas resistencias a disturbios. La identidad de las especies dominantes estuvo relacionada aparentemente con las distancias de las principales fuentes de contaminación. Se recomienda replicar esta investigación en otros lugares de la región del Caribe para probar la generalidad de estos resultados. Estudios futuros debieran tener en cuenta la influencia de otros factores ambientales, junto con una valoración de la tolerancia de las especies de reclutas a estos factores, para ponderar mejor el efecto de la contaminación urbana sobre el reclutamiento.The effect of pollution on coral recruitment has been insufficiently studied. This research deals with coral recruitment in coastal areas and aimed to determine the variations of density and dominant species of corals recruits in sites at different distances from pollution sources. The composition and structure of stony coral (scleractinian and milleporids recruit associations were characterized in the fringing reef of Western Havana, Cuba. This reef is influenced by urban pollution from the Almendares River and a sewage outlet located at its mouth. Four sites were sampled on the upper fore reef escarpment at 10m deep every three months between July 2007 and May 2008. A 25cm side quadrat was used to determine the density and taxonomic composition of recruits smaller than 3cm in

  14. Light is an active contributor to the vital effects of coral skeleton proxies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juillet-Leclerc, Anne; Reynaud, Stéphanie; Dissard, Delphine; Tisserand, Guillaume; Ferrier-Pagès, Christine

    2014-09-01

    Symbiotic colonies of the coral Acropora sp. were cultured in a factorial design of three temperatures (21, 25 and 28 °C) and two light intensities (200 and 400 μmol photon m-2 s-1), under constant conditions. A temperature of 25 °C and a light intensity of 200 μmol photon m-2 s-1 was the starting culture condition. Metabolic (photosynthesis, respiration, calcification and surface expansion rate) and geochemical measurements (δ18O, δ13C, Sr/Ca and Mg/Ca) were conducted on 6 colonies for each experimental condition. Metabolic measurements confirmed that respiration, photosynthesis, calcification and surface expansion rate responded to the combined effect of temperature and light. Under each light intensity, mean calcification rate was linearly correlated with mean photosynthetic activity. Geochemical measurements were also influenced by temperature and, to a lesser degree, by light. All geochemical proxies measured on 6 nubbins showed a wide scattering of values, regardless of the environmental condition. Compared to the other proxies, δ18O exhibited a different behavior. It was the only proxy exhibiting temperature tracer behavior. However, while mean values of Sr/Ca, Mg/Ca and δ13C were well correlated, the correlation between the later and mean δ18O differed with light level. This suggests that both skeleton deposition and temperature oxygen fractionation differs according to light intensity. Overall, the effect of light on geochemical values seems to compromise the use of proxy calibrations solely based on temperature influence. Under high light conditions, the great amplitude shown by individual net photosynthesis is directly proportional to the highly variable zooxanthellae density. As light is affecting all of the proxies, we thus assume that the strong geochemical variability observed could be explained by various algae densities, each nubbin responding according to its zooxanthellae amount. Accordingly, we suggest that each symbiosome (the

  15. Localization of early germ cells in a stony coral, Euphyllia ancora: potential implications for a germline stem cell system in coral gametogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shikina, Shinya; Chung, Yi-Jou; Wang, Hsiang-Ming; Chiu, Yi-Ling; Shao, Zih-Fang; Lee, Yan-Horn; Chang, Ching-Fong

    2015-06-01

    Most corals exhibit annual or multiple gametogenic cycles. Thus far, coral gametogenesis has been studied in many species and locations during the past three decades; however, currently, only a few papers exist that describe the origin of germ cells, such as germline stem cells (GSCs), which support the continuous production of gametes in every reproductive cycle. To address this issue, in this study, we focused on and identified piwi gene, which has been used as a marker of germline cells, including GSCs, in various metazoans, in a scleractinian coral, Euphyllia ancora. Reverse-transcription PCR and Western blotting analyses revealed that E. ancora piwi-like ( Eapiwi) is expressed in mesentery tissues where the sites of gametogenesis are located for both sexes. Immunohistochemistry with a specific antibody against Eapiwi revealed strong immunoreactivity in the spermatogonia in males and in the oogonia and early oocytes in females, demonstrating that Eapiwi could be used as an early germ cell marker in E. ancora. Subsequent immunohistochemical analyses regarding the spatial and temporal distribution patterns of early germ cells in mesentery tissues revealed that early germ cells were present throughout the year in the mesentery tissue we examined, regardless of the sexual reproductive cycle. In particular, small numbers of early germ cells were observed in specific sites of mesentery tissues with fully matured gonads in both sexes. These early germ cells were not released together with mature gametes during the spawning period and remained in the mesentery tissues. These results suggested that these early germ cells most likely serve as a reservoir of germline cells and that some of these cells would produce differentiated germ cells for the upcoming sexual reproduction period; hence, these cells would function as GSCs. Our data provide new information for understanding continuous gamete production in corals.

  16. Calibrating amino acid δ13C and δ15N offsets between polyp and protein skeleton to develop proteinaceous deep-sea corals as paleoceanographic archives

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMahon, Kelton W.; Williams, Branwen; Guilderson, Thomas P.; Glynn, Danielle S.; McCarthy, Matthew D.

    2018-01-01

    Compound-specific stable isotopes of amino acids (CSI-AA) from proteinaceous deep-sea coral skeletons have the potential to improve paleoreconstructions of plankton community composition, and our understanding of the trophic dynamics and biogeochemical cycling of sinking organic matter in the Ocean. However, the assumption that the molecular isotopic values preserved in protein skeletal material reflect those of the living coral polyps has never been directly investigated in proteinaceous deep-sea corals. We examined CSI-AA from three genera of proteinaceous deep-sea corals from three oceanographically distinct regions of the North Pacific: Primnoa from the Gulf of Alaska, Isidella from the Central California Margin, and Kulamanamana from the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre. We found minimal offsets in the δ13C values of both essential and non-essential AAs, and in the δ15N values of source AAs, between paired samples of polyp tissue and protein skeleton. Using an essential AA δ13C fingerprinting approach, we show that estimates of the relative contribution of eukaryotic microalgae and prokaryotic cyanobacteria to the sinking organic matter supporting deep-sea corals are the same when calculated from polyp tissue or recently deposited skeletal tissue. The δ15N values of trophic AAs in skeletal tissue, on the other hand, were consistently 3-4‰ lower than polyp tissue for all three genera. We hypothesize that this offset reflects a partitioning of nitrogen flux through isotopic branch points in the synthesis of polyp (fast turnover tissue) and skeleton (slow, unidirectional incorporation). This offset indicates an underestimation, albeit correctable, of approximately half a trophic position from gorgonin protein-based deep-sea coral skeleton. Together, our observations open the door for applying many of the rapidly evolving CSI-AA based tools developed for metabolically active tissues in modern systems to archival coral tissues in a paleoceanographic context.

  17. Brucite microbialites in living coral skeletons: Indicators of extreme microenvironments in shallow-marine settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nothdurft, L.D.; Webb, G.E.; Buster, N.A.; Holmes, C.W.; Sorauf, J.E.; Kloprogge, J.T.

    2005-01-01

    Brucite [Mg(OH)2] microbialites occur in vacated interseptal spaces of living scleractinian coral colonies (Acropora, Pocillopora, Porites) from subtidal and intertidal settings in the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, and subtidal Montastraea from the Florida Keys, United States. Brucite encrusts microbial filaments of endobionts (i.e., fungi, green algae, cyanobacteria) growing under organic biofilms; the brucite distribution is patchy both within interseptal spaces and within coralla. Although brucite is undersaturated in seawater, its precipitation was apparently induced in the corals by lowered pCO 2 and increased pH within microenvironments protected by microbial biofilms. The occurrence of brucite in shallow-marine settings highlights the importance of microenvironments in the formation and early diagenesis of marine carbonates. Significantly, the brucite precipitates discovered in microenvironments in these corals show that early diagenetic products do not necessarily reflect ambient seawater chemistry. Errors in environmental interpretation may arise where unidentified precipitates occur in microenvironments in skeletal carbonates that are subsequently utilized as geochemical seawater proxies. ?? 2005 Geological Society of America.

  18. Impact of anthropogenic disturbances on the diversity of shallow stony corals in the Veracruz Reef System National Park Impacto de perturbaciones antrópicas sobre la diversidad de corales pétreos superficiales en el Parque Nacional Sistema Arrecifal veracruzano

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carla V. Gutiérrez-Ruiz

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic disturbances may affect the development and maintenance of coral reefs by promoting diseases and other syndromes. In turn, this may cause local decreases in coral species diversity. In this study, we compared the prevalence of syndromes (including diseases and non-disease syndromes and the diversity of stony coral species between reefs located close (Sacrificios reef and far away (Santiaguillo reef of the port of Veracruz, Mexico. The prevalence of syndromes was higher at Sacrificios than at Santiaguillo, and it also increased with the abundance of coral colonies at the former reef. On the other hand, coral diversity was lower at Sacrificios than at Santiaguillo, suggesting that anthropogenic disturbances, besides promoting diseases and other syndromes, also lead to local decreases in species diversity.Las perturbaciones antropogénicas pueden afectar el desarrollo y mantenimiento de los arrecifes de coral mediante la promoción de las enfermedades y otros síndromes. A su vez, esto puede producir un descenso en la diversidad local de especies. En este estudio, se comparó la prevalencia de síndromes (tanto aquellos causados por enfermedades, como por otros factores y la diversidad de especies de corales pétreos entre arrecifes ubicados cerca (Sacrificios y lejos (Santiaguillo del puerto de Veracruz, México. La prevalencia de síndromes fue mayor en Sacrificios que en Santiaguillo, y también se incrementó con la abundancia de colonias de coral en Sacrificios. Por otra parte, la diversidad de corales fue menor en Sacrificios que en Santiaguillo, sugiriendo que las perturbaciones antropogénicas, además de promover las enfermedades y otros síndromes, también disminuyen localmente la diversidad de especies.

  19. Stepwise Evolution of Coral Biomineralization Revealed with Genome-Wide Proteomics and Transcriptomics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawada, Hitoshi; Satoh, Noriyuki

    2016-01-01

    Despite the importance of stony corals in many research fields related to global issues, such as marine ecology, climate change, paleoclimatogy, and metazoan evolution, very little is known about the evolutionary origin of coral skeleton formation. In order to investigate the evolution of coral biomineralization, we have identified skeletal organic matrix proteins (SOMPs) in the skeletal proteome of the scleractinian coral, Acropora digitifera, for which large genomic and transcriptomic datasets are available. Scrupulous gene annotation was conducted based on comparisons of functional domain structures among metazoans. We found that SOMPs include not only coral-specific proteins, but also protein families that are widely conserved among cnidarians and other metazoans. We also identified several conserved transmembrane proteins in the skeletal proteome. Gene expression analysis revealed that expression of these conserved genes continues throughout development. Therefore, these genes are involved not only skeleton formation, but also in basic cellular functions, such as cell-cell interaction and signaling. On the other hand, genes encoding coral-specific proteins, including extracellular matrix domain-containing proteins, galaxins, and acidic proteins, were prominently expressed in post-settlement stages, indicating their role in skeleton formation. Taken together, the process of coral skeleton formation is hypothesized as: 1) formation of initial extracellular matrix between epithelial cells and substrate, employing pre-existing transmembrane proteins; 2) additional extracellular matrix formation using novel proteins that have emerged by domain shuffling and rapid molecular evolution and; 3) calcification controlled by coral-specific SOMPs. PMID:27253604

  20. Nitrogen isotopic composition of organic matter from a 168 year-old coral skeleton: Implications for coastal nutrient cycling in the Great Barrier Reef Lagoon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erler, Dirk V.; Wang, Xingchen T.; Sigman, Daniel M.; Scheffers, Sander R.; Martínez-García, Alfredo; Haug, Gerald H.

    2016-01-01

    Ongoing human activities are known to affect nitrogen cycling on coral reefs, but the full history of anthropogenic impact is unclear due to a lack of continuous records. We have used the nitrogen isotopic composition of skeleton-bound organic matter (CS-δ15N) in a coastal Porites coral from Magnetic Island in the Great Barrier Reef as a proxy for N cycle changes over a 168 yr period (1820-1987 AD). The Magnetic Island inshore reef environment is considered to be relatively degraded by terrestrial runoff; given prior CS-δ15N studies from other regions, there was an expectation of both secular change and oscillations in CS-δ15N since European settlement of the mainland in the mid 1800s. Surprisingly, CS-δ15N varied by less than 1.5‰ despite significant land use change on the adjacent mainland over the 168-yr measurement period. After 1930, CS-δ15N may have responded to changes in local river runoff, but the effect was weak. We propose that natural buffering against riverine nitrogen load in this region between 1820 and 1987 is responsible for the observed stability in CS-δ15N. In addition to coral derived skeletal δ15N, we also report, for the first time, δ15N measurements of non-coral derived organic N occluded within the coral skeleton, which appear to record significant changes in the nature of terrestrial N inputs. In the context of previous CS-δ15N records, most of which yield CS-δ15N changes of at least 5‰, the Magnetic Island coral suggests that the inherent down-core variability of the CS-δ15N proxy is less than 2‰ for Porites.

  1. Ecological intereactions of reef building corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coral reefs are very important marine ecosystems because they support tremendous biodiversity and reefs are critical economic resources many coastal nations. Tropical reef structures are largely built by stony corals. This presentation provides background on basic coral biology t...

  2. Effect of Feeding On The Carbon and Oxygen Isotopic Composition In The Tissues and Skeleton of The Zooxanthellate Coral Stylophora Pistillata

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynaud-Vaganay, S.; Ferrier-Pagès, C.; Sambrotto, R.; Juillet-Leclerc, A.; Jaubert, J.

    and J.-P. Gattuso4 1Centre Scientifique de Monaco, Avenue Saint Martin, MC-98000, Principality of Monaco 2Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, 61 Rt. 9W/ P.O. Box 1000, Palisades, NY 10964 U.S.A 3Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, Laboratoire mixte CNRS- CEA, F-91180 Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex, France 4Observatoire Océanologique, Laboratoire d'Océanographie, CNRS-UPMC, BP 28, F- 06234 Villefranche-sur-mer Cedex, France The effect of feeding on the carbon isotopic composition of zooxanthellae, animal tissue and skeleton was investigated in the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata. Two sets of corals were grown with filtered seawater under controlled conditions. One group of colonies was fed with Artemia nauplii and compared to a control group that was starved. Fed corals exhibited higher concentrations of chlorophyll protein calcification rates than starved colonies. The net photosynthetic rate was higher in starved than in fed corals, whereas dark respiration was not significantly different. The average ? C value of Artemia nauplii used for feeding was -12. ? C was 13 13 significantly heavier in zooxanthellae than in animal tissues, for both fed (-10.1vs. -11.7) and starved colonies (-10.9vs. -13.2). Isotopic data reflected the incorporation of Artemia carbon into the coral tissue in that the ? C was 13 significantly heavier in fed than in starved colonies (-11.7 to -13.2 respectively), although there was no difference in the ? C of the zooxanthellae fraction. Skeletal 13 ? C was similar in fed and starved colonies (mean = -4.6). Skeletal ? O 13 18 composition was, however, significantly different between the two treatments (-4.24 to -4.05 for fed and starved colonies respectively). These data are used to establish a conceptual model of the carbon flow between the various compartments of a symbiotic coral.

  3. Bipartite life cycle of coral reef fishes promotes increasing shape disparity of the head skeleton during ontogeny: an example from damselfishes (Pomacentridae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vandewalle Pierre

    2011-03-01

    coral reef offering a wide range of feeding habits, promotes increasing shape disparity of the head skeleton over the ontogeny of fishes.

  4. Comparative genomics explains the evolutionary success of reef-forming corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharya, Debashish; Agrawal, Shobhit; Aranda, Manuel; Baumgarten, Sebastian; Belcaid, Mahdi; Drake, Jeana L; Erwin, Douglas; Foret, Sylvian; Gates, Ruth D; Gruber, David F; Kamel, Bishoy; Lesser, Michael P; Levy, Oren; Liew, Yi Jin; MacManes, Matthew; Mass, Tali; Medina, Monica; Mehr, Shaadi; Meyer, Eli; Price, Dana C; Putnam, Hollie M; Qiu, Huan; Shinzato, Chuya; Shoguchi, Eiichi; Stokes, Alexander J; Tambutté, Sylvie; Tchernov, Dan; Voolstra, Christian R; Wagner, Nicole; Walker, Charles W; Weber, Andreas Pm; Weis, Virginia; Zelzion, Ehud; Zoccola, Didier; Falkowski, Paul G

    2016-05-24

    Transcriptome and genome data from twenty stony coral species and a selection of reference bilaterians were studied to elucidate coral evolutionary history. We identified genes that encode the proteins responsible for the precipitation and aggregation of the aragonite skeleton on which the organisms live, and revealed a network of environmental sensors that coordinate responses of the host animals to temperature, light, and pH. Furthermore, we describe a variety of stress-related pathways, including apoptotic pathways that allow the host animals to detoxify reactive oxygen and nitrogen species that are generated by their intracellular photosynthetic symbionts, and determine the fate of corals under environmental stress. Some of these genes arose through horizontal gene transfer and comprise at least 0.2% of the animal gene inventory. Our analysis elucidates the evolutionary strategies that have allowed symbiotic corals to adapt and thrive for hundreds of millions of years.

  5. Comparative genomics explains the evolutionary success of reef-forming corals

    KAUST Repository

    Bhattacharya, Debashish

    2016-05-24

    Transcriptome and genome data from twenty stony coral species and a selection of reference bilaterians were studied to elucidate coral evolutionary history. We identified genes that encode the proteins responsible for the precipitation and aggregation of the aragonite skeleton on which the organisms live, and revealed a network of environmental sensors that coordinate responses of the host animals to temperature, light, and pH. Furthermore, we describe a variety of stress-related pathways, including apoptotic pathways that allow the host animals to detoxify reactive oxygen and nitrogen species that are generated by their intracellular photosynthetic symbionts, and determine the fate of corals under environmental stress. Some of these genes arose through horizontal gene transfer and comprise at least 0.2% of the animal gene inventory. Our analysis elucidates the evolutionary strategies that have allowed symbiotic corals to adapt and thrive for hundreds of millions of years.

  6. The effect of changing seawater Ca and Mg concentrations upon the distribution coefficients of Mg and Sr in the skeletons of the scleractinian coral Pocillopora damicornis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giri, Sharmila J.; Swart, Peter K.; Devlin, Quinn B.

    2018-02-01

    The skeletal composition of calcifying organisms, in particular Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca ratios, have been widely used to understand fluctuations in seawater chemistry throughout the Phanerozoic. While the success of applying these data to the geologic record depends on a knowledge of the distribution coefficients for these elements (DMg and DSr), there are scarcely any studies which have described how these values vary as a result of changing seawater Mg/Ca ratios. To address this, we have cultured the scleractinian coral, Pocillopora damicornis, in seawater with ranges of Mg and Ca concentrations. Here, we demonstrate that Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca ratios of coral skeletons correlate with total seawater Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca molar ratios, but that apparent DMg and DSr values do not remain constant across the range of experimental seawater treatments, with DMg values significantly increasing with seawater Mg/Ca ratios and DSr values significantly increasing with seawater Ca concentrations. These trends are not rate dependent and may be best explained by a Rayleigh distillation model, in which the calcifying space is semi-isolated from seawater during skeletogenesis (i.e. leaky). As there is a slight increase in DMg and decrease in DSr values between our "Jurassic" and "Modern" seawater treatments, the application of a constant distribution coefficient to estimate changes in ancient seawater chemistry may underestimate seawater Mg/Ca ratios and overestimate Sr/Ca throughout the Mesozoic and Cenozoic. We suggest that interpretations of seawater chemistry from fossil corals may be improved by using the relationships derived for skeletal and seawater Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca ratios established by our experiments, as they incorporate the effect of seawater Mg/Ca ratios on skeletal Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca ratios.

  7. CHARACTERIZING CORAL CONDITION USING ESTIMATES OF THREE-DIMENSIONAL COLONY SURFACE AREA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coral reefs provide shoreline protection, biological diversity, fishery harvets, and tourism, all values that stem from the physically-complex coral infrastructure. Stony corals (scleractinianss) construct and maintain the reef through deposition of calcium carbonate. Therefore...

  8. Key Ecological Interactions of Reef Building Corals - 11-16-2011

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coral reefs are very important marine ecosystems because they support tremendous biodiversity and reefs are critical economic resources many coastal nations. Tropical reef structures are largely built by stony corals. This presentation provides background on basic coral biology t...

  9. Identifying genes and regulatory pathways associated with the scleractinian coral calcification process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutner-Hoch, Eldad; Waldman Ben-Asher, Hiba; Yam, Ruth; Shemesh, Aldo; Levy, Oren

    2017-01-01

    Reef building corals precipitate calcium carbonate as an exo-skeleton and provide substratum for prosperous marine life. Biomineralization of the coral's skeleton is a developmental process that occurs concurrently with other proliferation processes that control the animal extension and growth. The development of the animal body is regulated by large gene regulatory networks, which control the expression of gene sets that progressively generate developmental patterns in the animal body. In this study we have explored the gene expression profile and signaling pathways followed by the calcification process of a basal metazoan, the Red Sea scleractinian (stony) coral, Stylophora pistillata . When treated by seawater with high calcium concentrations (addition of 100 gm/L, added as CaCl 2 .2H 2 O), the coral increases its calcification rates and associated genes were up-regulated as a result, which were then identified. Gene expression was compared between corals treated with elevated and normal calcium concentrations. Calcification rate measurements and gene expression analysis by microarray RNA transcriptional profiling at two time-points (midday and night-time) revealed several genes common within mammalian gene regulatory networks. This study indicates that core genes of the Wnt and TGF-β/BMP signaling pathways may also play roles in development, growth, and biomineralization in early-diverging organisms such as corals.

  10. Relationship Between Photosynthetic Light Dosage and Metabolic Isotope Effects in the Long-term Cultured Porites Coral Skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omata, T.; Suzuki, A.; Sato, T.; Murakami, A.; Kawahata, H.; Maruyama, T.

    2008-12-01

    A long-term culture experiment of Porites spp. corals were conducted at different light dosages (light intensity, 100, 300, or 500 micro mol m-2 s-1; daily light period, 10 or 12 h) at constant temperature to examine the contribution of photosynthetic activity to skeletal carbon isotope composition. As the daily dose of photosynthetically active radiation increased, the rate of annual extension also increased. Mean isotope compositions shifted; the carbon isotope compositions became heavier and the oxygen isotope compositions became lighter at higher radiation dose. Whereas chlorophyll a (Chl a) content per both unit area and cell decreased as light dosage increased, carotenoids/Chl a increased. Skeletal oxygen isotope compositions decrease coincided with increasing skeletal growth rate, indicating the influence of so-called kinetic isotope effects. The observed carbon isotope compositions increase should be subject to both kinetic and metabolic isotope effects. Using a vector approach in the carbon-oxygen isotope compositions' plane (Omata et al., 2005), we discriminated between kinetic and metabolic isotope effects on carbon isotope compositions. The metabolic carbon isotopic fractionation-light was similar to the photosynthesis-irradiance curve, indicating the direct contribution of photosynthetic activity to metabolic isotope effects. In contrast, the fractionation of carbon isotope related to kinetic isotope effects gradually increased as the growth rate increased.

  11. Contrasting responses of coral reef fauna and foraminiferal assemblages to human influence in La Parguera, Puerto Rico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coral reef biota including stony corals, sponges, gorgonians, fish, benthic macroinvertebrates and foraminifera were surveyed in coastal waters near La Parguera, in southwestern Puerto Rico. The goal was to evaluate sensitivity of coral reef biological indicators to human distur...

  12. Identifying genes and regulatory pathways associated with the scleractinian coral calcification process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eldad Gutner-Hoch

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Reef building corals precipitate calcium carbonate as an exo-skeleton and provide substratum for prosperous marine life. Biomineralization of the coral’s skeleton is a developmental process that occurs concurrently with other proliferation processes that control the animal extension and growth. The development of the animal body is regulated by large gene regulatory networks, which control the expression of gene sets that progressively generate developmental patterns in the animal body. In this study we have explored the gene expression profile and signaling pathways followed by the calcification process of a basal metazoan, the Red Sea scleractinian (stony coral, Stylophora pistillata. When treated by seawater with high calcium concentrations (addition of 100 gm/L, added as CaCl2.2H2O, the coral increases its calcification rates and associated genes were up-regulated as a result, which were then identified. Gene expression was compared between corals treated with elevated and normal calcium concentrations. Calcification rate measurements and gene expression analysis by microarray RNA transcriptional profiling at two time-points (midday and night-time revealed several genes common within mammalian gene regulatory networks. This study indicates that core genes of the Wnt and TGF-β/BMP signaling pathways may also play roles in development, growth, and biomineralization in early-diverging organisms such as corals.

  13. Evapotranspiration simulated by CRITERIA and AquaCrop models in stony soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pasquale Campi

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The performance of a water balance model is also based on the ability to correctly perform simulations in heterogeneous soils. The objective of this paper is to test CRITERIA and AquaCrop models in order to evaluate their suitability in estimating evapotranspiration at the field scale in two types of soil in the Mediterranean region: non-stony and stony soil. The first step of the work was to calibrate both models under the non-stony conditions. The models were calibrated by using observations on wheat crop (leaf area index or canopy cover, and phenological stages as a function of degree days and pedo-climatic measurements. The second step consisted in the analysing the impact of the soil type on the models performances by comparing simulated and measured values. The outputs retained in the analysis were soil water content (at the daily scale and crop evapotranspiration (at two time scales: daily and crop season. The model performances were evaluated through four statistical tests: normalised difference (D% at the seasonal time scale; and relative root mean square error (RRMSE, efficiency index (EF, coefficient of determination (r2 at the daily scale. At the seasonal scale, values of D% were less than 15% in stony and on-stony soils, indicating a good performance attained by both models. At the daily scale, the RRMSE values (<30% indicate that the evapotranspiration simulated by CRITERIA is acceptable in both soil types. In the stony soil conditions, 3 out 4 statistical tests (RRMSE, EF, r2 indicate the inadequacy of AquaCrop to simulate correctly daily evapotranspiration. The higher performance of CRITERIA model to simulate daily evapotranspiration in stony soils, is due to the soil submodel, which requires the percentage skeleton as an input, while AquaCrop model takes into account the presence of skeleton by reducing the soil volume.

  14. Iterating skeletons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dieterle, Mischa; Horstmeyer, Thomas; Berthold, Jost

    2012-01-01

    to successively improving data, the repeated instantiation of a skeleton incurs a certain overhead that could be saved by reusing existing processes, threads and communication structures. This is especially important when running parallel applications in a distributed environment. However, customising......Skeleton-based programming is an area of increasing relevance with upcoming highly parallel hardware, since it substantially facilitates parallel programming and separates concerns. When parallel algorithms expressed by skeletons involve iterations – applying the same algorithm repeatedly...... a particular skeleton ad-hoc for repeated execution turns out to be considerably complicated, and raises general questions about introducing state into a stateless parallel computation. In addition, one would strongly prefer an approach which leaves the original skeleton intact, and only uses it as a building...

  15. Fluid inclusions in stony meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warner, J. L.; Ashwal, L. D.; Bergman, S. C.; Gibson, E. K., Jr.; Henry, D. J.; Lee-Berman, R.; Roedder, E.; Belkin, H. E.

    1983-01-01

    The fluid inclusions presently described for five stony meteorites brings to seven the number of such meteorites confirmed. Homogenization temperatures are reproducible in each inclusion, and range from 25 C to over 225 C, with some vapor plus liquid inclusions remaining at 225 C, the highest temperature in these microthermometric experiments. Upon cooling, the fluid in some inclusions appears to freeze, as indicated by deformation and immobilization of the vapor bubble at low temperatures. Melting temperatures are by contrast difficult to observe and are not reproducible. Microthermometric data for the fluid in diogenite ALPHA 77256 and inclusions in four chondrites suggest that the fluid is aqueous, with a high solute content.

  16. The effect of light, respiration and pCO2 on d11B in coral skeletons: results from culture and field experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hönisch, B.; Hemming, N. G.; Grottoli, A. G.; Amat, A.; Hanson, G. N.; Bijma, J.

    2003-04-01

    Reef corals are commonly used for paleoenvironment reconstructions. It is important to understand all controls on tracer uptake and fractionation in order to obtain reliable information from these studies. We present boron isotope compositions (δ11B) of laboratory cultured, branching, symbiont-bearing species of the genus Porites and Acropora. Advances in coral culturing techniques allow total control on environmental variables so that biogeochemical relationships of the coral-seawater system can be assessed. Microsensor studies revealed significant pH deviations in the coral microenvironment due to physiological processes such as respiration and symbiont photosynthesis (Kühl et al., Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser., Vol. 117, 159-172, 1995). To test whether photosynthesis and respiration rates could change the δ11B, corals were grown under controlled conditions at varying light intensities and food supply. Additionally, corals were positioned along a depth transect in their natural environment, thereby exposing them to gradually decreasing light levels. The physiological sensitivity of these specimens to these conditions is reflected in their carbon isotope fractionation (Grottoli, Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, Vol. 66, No. 11, 1955-1967, 2002). The δ11B of these corals, in agreement with previous work on foraminifera, closely reflects seawater-pH. Light intensity does not affect δ11B if insolation is above the onset of saturation (E_k). Samples from a depth transect will test the effects of light levels below saturation. Varying nutrient levels do not significantly affect the boron isotope composition, either. These findings are encouraging for using the boron isotope paleo-pH proxy, because it appears that seawater pH is the dominant control on coral isotope composition.

  17. Iron and stony-iron meteorites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ruzicka, Alex M.; Haack, Henning; Chabot, Nancy L.

    2017-01-01

    By far most of the melted and differentiated planetesimals that have been sampled as meteorites are metal-rich iron meteorites or stony iron meteorites. The parent asteroids of these meteorites accreted early and differentiated shortly after the solar system formed, producing some of the oldest...... and interpretations for iron and stony iron meteorites (Plate 13.1). Such meteorites provide important constraints on the nature of metal-silicate separation and mixing in planetesimals undergoing partial to complete differentiation. They include iron meteorites that formed by the solidification of cores...... (fractionally crystallized irons), irons in which partly molten metal and silicates of diverse types were mixed together (silicate-bearing irons), stony irons in which partly molten metal and olivine from cores and mantles were mixed together (pallasites), and stony irons in which partly molten metal...

  18. Iron and stony-iron meteorites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Benedix, Gretchen K.; Haack, Henning; McCoy, T. J.

    2014-01-01

    Without iron and stony-iron meteorites, our chances of ever sampling the deep interior of a differentiated planetary object would be next to nil. Although we live on a planet with a very substantial core, we will never be able to sample it. Fortunately, asteroid collisions provide us with a rich...... sampling of the deep interiors of differentiated asteroids. Iron and stony-iron meteorites are fragments of a large number of asteroids that underwent significant geological processing in the early solar system. Parent bodies of iron and some stony-iron meteorites completed a geological evolution similar...... to that continuing on Earth – although on much smaller length- and timescales – with melting of the metal and silicates; differentiation into core, mantle, and crust; and probably extensive volcanism. Iron and stony-iron meteorites are our only available analogues to materials found in the deep interiors of Earth...

  19. Preliminary results with a torsion microbalance indicate that carbon dioxide and exposed carbonic anhydrase in the organic matrix are the basis of calcification on the skeleton surface of living corals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian M Sandeman

    2012-03-01

    , p<0.05 indicating a dependence on carbonate. At a pH of 6.5 the skeleton lost weight at a rate of 1.8 mg.h-1.cm-2. The relationship between net calcification and pH (n=2 indicates that wt gain turns to loss at pH 7.4. These experiments confirm that calcification is a two-step process, involving secretion of a layer of organic matrix incorporating carbonic anhydrase to produce an active calcifying surface which uses carbon dioxide rather than carbonate. It is also unlikely that the calcifying surface is in direct contact with seawater. Inorganic deposition or dissolution of the skeleton in exposed dead areas of coral is a different phenomenon and is carbonate related. The wide range in results from this and other studies of calcification rate and carbon dioxide may be explainable in terms of the ratio of “live” to “dead” areas of coral.

  20. Hybridisation on coral reefs and the conservation of evolutionary novelty

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Zoe T. RICHARDS Jean-Paul A. HOBBS

    2015-01-01

    .... In this review, we summarise the growing body of evidence arising from studies on stony corals and reef fishes to verify the occurrence of hybridisatiori, and we examine the influence hybridisation...

  1. A trait-based approach to advance coral reef science

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madin, Joshua S.; Hoogenboom, Mia O.; Connolly, Sean R.

    2016-01-01

    Coral reefs are biologically diverse and ecologically complex ecosystems constructed by stony corals. Despite decades of research, basic coral population biology and community ecology questions remain. Quantifying trait variation among species can help resolve these questions, but progress has be...... a large amount of variation for a range of biological and ecological processes. Such an approach can accelerate our understanding of coral ecology and our ability to protect critically threatened global ecosystems....

  2. Estimating 3-dimensional colony surface area of field corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colony surface area is a critical descriptor for biological and physical attributes of reef-building (scleractinian, stony) corals. The three-dimensional (3D) size and structure of corals are directly related to many ecosystem values and functions. Most methods to estimate colony...

  3. Responses of reef building corals to microplastic exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichert, Jessica; Schellenberg, Johannes; Schubert, Patrick; Wilke, Thomas

    2017-11-13

    Pollution of marine environments with microplastic particles (i.e. plastic fragments coral reefs are particularly threatened. Recent studies revealed that microplastic ingestion can have adverse effects on marine invertebrates. However, little is known about its effects on small-polyp stony corals that are the main framework builders in coral reefs. The goal of this study is to characterise how different coral species I) respond to microplastic particles and whether the exposure might II) lead to health effects. Therefore, six small-polyp stony coral species belonging to the genera Acropora, Pocillopora, and Porites were exposed to microplastics (polyethylene, size 37-163 μm, concentration ca. 4000 particles L(-1)) over four weeks, and responses and effects on health were documented. The study showed that the corals responded differentially to microplastics. Cleaning mechanisms (direct interaction, mucus production) but also feeding interactions (i.e. interaction with mesenterial filaments, ingestion, and egestion) were observed. Additionally, passive contact through overgrowth was documented. In five of the six studied species, negative effects on health (i.e. bleaching and tissue necrosis) were reported. We here provide preliminary knowledge about coral-microplastic-interactions. The results call for further investigations of the effects of realistic microplastic concentrations on growth, reproduction, and survival of stony corals. This might lead to a better understanding of resilience capacities in coral reef ecosystems. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Mycosporine-like amino acids in six scleractinian coral species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmad A. Al-Utaibi

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs were studied in stony coral species (Fungiidae along the Eastern coast of the Red Sea. Six species - Fungia scutaria, F. danai, F. corona, F. repanda, Ctenactis echinata and Lithophyllor lobata - were examined for MAAs at water depths of 5, 10, 15 and 20 m. Protein and chlorophyll were also determined and showed higher contents in winter than in summer. Generally, the total content of MAAs in summer was found to be approximately three times greater than in winter. Overall, concentrations of MAAs were greatest at a depth of 5 m. Porphyra-334 was the most abundant MAA in F. Scutaria and F. Danai, whereas asterina-330 was either not detectable (e.g. L. lobata or present in low concentrations (e.g. F. danai, F. repanda and C. echinata. Shinorine was not detected in F. danai or L. lobata. Both C. echinata and L. Lobata had the lowest concentrations of MAAs, presumably because of their large calcareous skeletons. The variation in MAA concentrations among seasons and water depths is probably due to a number of factors, including the intensity of solar radiation, turbidity and phylogenetic variation.

  5. The Skeletons' Halloween

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourque, Simone

    2010-01-01

    Mexican printer Jose Guadalupe Posada's (1851-1913) numerous prints of "calaveras" gave vast popularity to skeleton figures through his satirical and politically critical renditions of skeletons engaged in daily activities. They are oftentimes represented in festive and playful posturing. Calaveras have now become the most original trait…

  6. Preliminary results with a torsion microbalance indicate that carbon dioxide and exposed carbonic anhydrase in the organic matrix are the basis of calcification on the skeleton surface of living corals

    OpenAIRE

    Ian M. Sandeman

    2012-01-01

    Ocean acidification is altering the calcification of corals, but the mechanism is still unclear. To explore what controls calcification, small pieces from the edges of thin plates of Agaricia agaricites were suspended from a torsion microbalance into gently stirred, temperaturecontrolled, seawater. Net calcification rates were monitored while light, temperature and pH were manipulated singly. The living coral pieces were sensitive to changes in conditions, especially light, and calcification ...

  7. The stapl Skeleton Framework

    KAUST Repository

    Zandifar, Mani

    2015-01-01

    © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015. This paper describes the stapl Skeleton Framework, a highlevel skeletal approach for parallel programming. This framework abstracts the underlying details of data distribution and parallelism from programmers and enables them to express parallel programs as a composition of existing elementary skeletons such as map, map-reduce, scan, zip, butterfly, allreduce, alltoall and user-defined custom skeletons. Skeletons in this framework are defined as parametric data flow graphs, and their compositions are defined in terms of data flow graph compositions. Defining the composition in this manner allows dependencies between skeletons to be defined in terms of point-to-point dependencies, avoiding unnecessary global synchronizations. To show the ease of composability and expressivity, we implemented the NAS Integer Sort (IS) and Embarrassingly Parallel (EP) benchmarks using skeletons and demonstrate comparable performance to the hand-optimized reference implementations. To demonstrate scalable performance, we show a transformation which enables applications written in terms of skeletons to run on more than 100,000 cores.

  8. Polyphyly and hidden species among Hawaiʻi’s dominant mesophotic coral genera, Leptoseris and Pavona (Scleractinia: Agariciidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel G. Luck

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Widespread polyphyly in stony corals (order Scleractinia has prompted efforts to revise their systematics through approaches that integrate molecular and micromorphological evidence. To date, these approaches have not been comprehensively applied to the dominant genera in mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs because several species in these genera occur primarily at depths that are poorly explored and from which sample collections are limited. This study is the first integrated morphological and molecular systematic analysis of the genera Leptoseris and Pavona to examine material both from shallow-water reefs (60 m. Skeletal and tissue samples were collected throughout the Hawaiian Archipelago between 2–127 m. A novel mitochondrial marker (cox1-1-rRNA intron was sequenced for 70 colonies, and the micromorphologies of 94 skeletons, plus selected type material, were analyzed. The cox1-1-rRNA intron resolved 8 clades, yet Leptoseris and Pavona were polyphyletic. Skeletal micromorphology, especially costal ornamentation, showed strong correspondence and discrete differences between mitochondrial groups. One putative new Leptoseris species was identified and the global depth range of the genus Pavona was extended to 89 m, suggesting that the diversity of mesophotic scleractinians has been underestimated. Examination of species’ depth distributions revealed a pattern of depth zonation: Species common in shallow-water were absent or rare >40 m, whereas others occurred only >60 m. These patterns emphasize the importance of integrated systematic analyses and more comprehensive sampling by depth in assessing the connectivity and diversity of MCEs.

  9. Polyphyly and hidden species among Hawai'i's dominant mesophotic coral genera, Leptoseris and Pavona (Scleractinia: Agariciidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luck, Daniel G; Forsman, Zac H; Toonen, Robert J; Leicht, Sarah J; Kahng, Samuel E

    2013-01-01

    Widespread polyphyly in stony corals (order Scleractinia) has prompted efforts to revise their systematics through approaches that integrate molecular and micromorphological evidence. To date, these approaches have not been comprehensively applied to the dominant genera in mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs) because several species in these genera occur primarily at depths that are poorly explored and from which sample collections are limited. This study is the first integrated morphological and molecular systematic analysis of the genera Leptoseris and Pavona to examine material both from shallow-water reefs (60 m). Skeletal and tissue samples were collected throughout the Hawaiian Archipelago between 2-127 m. A novel mitochondrial marker (cox1-1-rRNA intron) was sequenced for 70 colonies, and the micromorphologies of 94 skeletons, plus selected type material, were analyzed. The cox1-1-rRNA intron resolved 8 clades, yet Leptoseris and Pavona were polyphyletic. Skeletal micromorphology, especially costal ornamentation, showed strong correspondence and discrete differences between mitochondrial groups. One putative new Leptoseris species was identified and the global depth range of the genus Pavona was extended to 89 m, suggesting that the diversity of mesophotic scleractinians has been underestimated. Examination of species' depth distributions revealed a pattern of depth zonation: Species common in shallow-water were absent or rare >40 m, whereas others occurred only >60 m. These patterns emphasize the importance of integrated systematic analyses and more comprehensive sampling by depth in assessing the connectivity and diversity of MCEs.

  10. Spiders (Araneae of stony debris in North Bohemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Růžička, Vlastimil

    1996-12-01

    Full Text Available The arachnofauna was studied at five stony debris sites in northern Bohemia. In Central Europe, the northern and montane species inhabiting cold places live not only on mountain tops and peat bogs but also on the lower edges of boulder debris, where air streaming through the system of inner compartments gives rise to an exceedingly cold microclimate. At such cold sites, spiders can live either on bare stones (Bathyphantes simillimus, Wubanoides uralensis, or in the rich layers of moss and lichen (Diplocentria bidentata. Kratochviliella bicapitata exhibits a diplostenoecious occurence in stony debris and on the tree bark. Latithorax faustus and Theonoe minutissima display diplostenoecious occurence in stony debris and on peat bogs. The occurence of the species Scotina celans in the Czech Republic was documented for the first time.

  11. Oxygen isotope variation in stony-iron meteorites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenwood, R C; Franchi, I A; Jambon, A; Barrat, J A; Burbine, T H

    2006-09-22

    Asteroidal material, delivered to Earth as meteorites, preserves a record of the earliest stages of planetary formation. High-precision oxygen isotope analyses for the two major groups of stony-iron meteorites (main-group pallasites and mesosiderites) demonstrate that each group is from a distinct asteroidal source. Mesosiderites are isotopically identical to the howardite-eucrite-diogenite clan and, like them, are probably derived from the asteroid 4 Vesta. Main-group pallasites represent intermixed core-mantle material from a single disrupted asteroid and have no known equivalents among the basaltic meteorites. The stony-iron meteorites demonstrate that intense asteroidal deformation accompanied planetary accretion in the early Solar System.

  12. Heavy metal contamination from gold mining recorded in Porites lobata skeletons, Buyat-Ratototok district, North Sulawesi, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edinger, Evan N; Azmy, Karem; Diegor, Wilfredo; Siregar, P Raja

    2008-09-01

    Shallow marine sediments and fringing coral reefs of the Buyat-Ratototok district of North Sulawesi, Indonesia, are affected by submarine disposal of tailings from industrial gold mining and by small-scale gold mining using mercury amalgamation. Between-site variation in heavy metal concentrations in shallow marine sediments was partially reflected by trace element concentrations in reef coral skeletons from adjacent reefs. Corals skeletons recorded silicon, manganese, iron, copper, chromium, cobalt, antimony, thallium, and lead in different concentrations according to proximity to sources, but arsenic concentrations in corals were not significantly different among sites. Temporal analysis found that peak concentrations of arsenic and chromium generally coincided with peak concentrations of silica and/or copper, suggesting that most trace elements in the coral skeleton were incorporated into detrital siliciclastic sediments, rather than impurities within skeletal aragonite.

  13. Indirect evidences on the connectivity of coral reefs of the Gulf of Mexico and the mexican caribbean

    OpenAIRE

    Chávez Hidalgo, Alejandra; De La Cruz Agüero, Gustavo; Chávez Ortiz, Ernesto Aarón

    2008-01-01

    Coral reef connectivity results from the export and import of species or reproductive product between localities. Possible exchange pathways between the reef ecosystems in the country are not known; such knowledge about coral reef connectivity could contribute to its management and conservation. The connectivity between reefs of the Gulf of Mexico and Mexican Caribbean was evaluated based on patterns of similarity. Information for 48 stony coral species in 19 localities was compiled from diff...

  14. The influence of stony soil properties on water dynamics modeled by the HYDRUS model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hlaváčiková Hana

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Stony soils are composed of two fractions (rock fragments and fine soil with different hydrophysical characteristics. Although stony soils are abundant in many catchments, their properties are still not well understood. This manuscript presents an application of the simple methodology for deriving water retention properties of stony soils, taking into account a correction for the soil stoniness. Variations in the water retention of the fine soil fraction and its impact on both the soil water storage and the bottom boundary fluxes are studied as well. The deterministic water flow model HYDRUS-1D is used in the study. The results indicate that the presence of rock fragments in a moderate-to-high stony soil can decrease the soil water storage by 23% or more and affect the soil water dynamics. Simulated bottom fluxes increased or decreased faster, and their maxima during the wet period were larger in the stony soil compared to the non-stony one.

  15. Preliminary results with a torsion microbalance indicate that carbon dioxide and exposed carbonic anhydrase in the organic matrix are the basis of calcification on the skeleton surface of living corals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian M Sandeman

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Ocean acidification is altering the calcification of corals, but the mechanism is still unclear. To explore what controls calcification, small pieces from the edges of thin plates of Agaricia agaricites were suspended from a torsion microbalance into gently stirred, temperaturecontrolled, seawater. Net calcification rates were monitored while light, temperature and pH were manipulated singly. The living coral pieces were sensitive to changes in conditions, especially light, and calcification was often suspended for one or two hours or overnight. The mean calcification rate increased from 0.06 in the dark to 0.10 mg.h-1.cm-2 (T test, n=8, pLa acidificaión de los océanos está alterando la calcificón de los corales. Sin embargo, el mecanismo no es todavía claro. Para explorar que controla la calcificación piezas pequeñas del borde de láminas delgadas de Agaricia agaricites fueron suspendidas de una microbalanza de torsión en agua de mar ligeramente agitada y con temperatura controlada. La tasa neta de calcificación fue monitoreada mientras se manipulaba la luz, temperatura y pH. Las piezas de coral vivo fueron sensibles a cambios en las condiciones, especialmente de luz, y la calcificación se suspendía por una o dos horas o de un día para otro. La tasa media de calcificación aumentó de 0.06 en la oscuridad a 0.10 mg h-1 cm-2 (prueba T, n=8, p<0.01 en luminosidad baja (15 μmol s-1 m-2 y mostró una relación lineal positiva con la temperatura. Con una reducción en el pH promedio de 8.2 a 7.6 la tasa de calcificación media en la luz (65 μmol.s-1.m-2 aumentó de 0.19 a 0.28 mg h-1 cm-2 (prueba T, n=8, p<0.05 indicando una dependencia de dióxido de carbono. Después de remover el tejido y exponer la superficie de los esqueletos/matriz orgánica a agua de mar, la calcificación tiene un marcada aumento inicial de más de un orden de magnitud y después decrese siguiendo una curva generalizada Michaelis-Menten de crecimiento no

  16. Coral-based climate records from tropical South Atlantic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pereira, Natan S.; Sial, Alcides N.; Kikuchi, Ruy K.P.

    2015-01-01

    Coral skeletons contain records of past environmental conditions due to their long life span and well calibrated geochemical signatures. C and O isotope records of corals are especially interesting, because they can highlight multidecadal variability of local climate conditions beyond the instrum...

  17. Light gradients and optical microniches in coral tissues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel eWangpraseurt

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Light quantity and quality are among the most important factors determining the physiology and stress response of zooxanthellate corals. Yet, almost nothing is known about the light field that Symbiodinium experiences within their coral host, and the basic optical properties of coral tissue are unknown. We used scalar irradiance microprobes to characterise vertical and lateral light gradients within and across tissues of several coral species. Our results revealed the presence of steep light gradients with PAR (photosynthetically available radiation decreasing by about one order of magnitude from the tissue surface to the coral skeleton. Surface scalar irradiance was consistently higher over polyp tissue than over coenosarc tissue in faviid corals. Coral bleaching increased surface scalar irradiance by ~150% (between 500-700 nm relative to a healthy coral. Photosynthesis peaked around 300 µm within the tissue, which corresponded to a zone exhibiting strongest depletion of scalar irradiance. Deeper coral tissue layers, e.g. ~1000 µm into aboral polyp tissues, harbor optical microniches, where only ~10% of the incident irradiance remains. We conclude that the optical microenvironment of corals exhibits strong lateral and vertical gradients of scalar irradiance, which are affected by both tissue and skeleton optical properties. Our results imply that zooxanthellae populations inhabit a strongly heterogeneous light environment and highlight the presence of different optical microniches in corals; an important finding for understanding the photobiology, stress response, as well as the phenotypic and genotypic plasticity of coral symbionts.

  18. Costs and benefits of maternally inherited algal symbionts in coral larvae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chamberland, V.F.; Latijnhouwers, K.R.W.; Huisman, J.; Hartmann, A.C.; Vermeij, M.J.A.

    2017-01-01

    Many marine invertebrates provide their offspring with symbionts. Yet the consequences of maternally inherited symbionts on larval fitness remain largely unexplored. In the stony coral Favia fragum (Esper 1797), mothers produce larvae with highly variable amounts of endosymbiotic algae, and we

  19. Coral reef ecosystem

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Wafar, M.V.M.; Wafar, S.

    is unparalleled by any other marine ecosystem. More than 2,200 fishes are known allover the world reefs (Sale 1980), ofwhich several hundreds may orcur at any time in a single reef (Sale et al. 1994). So is the order ofsome other invertebrate groups: corals (800... skeleton. in bone transplants). Capacity Building in Intellectual Property Rights (/PR) Technological benefits from the use of hiodiversity can be in lhe order of millions of dollars. For example, sale ofTaq D!'IA polymerase, produced from thennophi)ic...

  20. High salinity conveys thermotolerance in the coral model Aiptasia

    KAUST Repository

    Gegner, Hagen M.

    2017-12-15

    The endosymbiosis between dinoflagellate algae of the genus Symbiodinium and stony corals provides the foundation of coral reef ecosystems. Coral bleaching, the expulsion of endosymbionts from the coral host tissue as a consequence of heat or light stress, poses a threat to reef ecosystem functioning on a global scale. Hence, a better understanding of the factors contributing to heat stress susceptibility and tolerance is needed. In this regard, some of the most thermotolerant corals also live in particularly saline habitats, but possible effects of high salinity on thermotolerance in corals are anecdotal. Here we test the hypothesis that high salinity may lead to increased thermotolerance. We conducted a heat stress experiment at low, intermediate, and high salinities using a set of host-endosymbiont combinations of the coral model Aiptasia. As expected, all host-endosymbiont combinations showed reduced photosynthetic efficiency and endosymbiont loss during heat stress, but the severity of bleaching was significantly reduced with increasing salinities for one of the host-endosymbiont combinations. Our results show that higher salinities can convey increased thermotolerance in Aiptasia, although this effect seems to be dependent on the particular host strain and/or associated symbiont type. This finding may help explain the extraordinarily high thermotolerance of corals in high salinity environments such as the Red Sea and the Persian/Arabian Gulf and provides novel insight regarding factors that contribute to thermotolerance. Since our results are based on a salinity effect in symbiotic sea anemones, it remains to be determined whether this salinity effect can also be observed in stony corals.

  1. Using the Stylophora pistillata genome and cell cultures to understand the mechanism of aragonite precipitation in corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mass, T.; Drake, J.; Haramaty, L.; Zelzion, U.; Bhattacharya, D.; Rosenthal, Y.; Falkowski, P. G.

    2012-12-01

    Atmospheric CO 2 levels are rising rapidly, resulting in a decrease in both oceanic pH, and the carbonate saturation state (Ω). It has been hypothesized that calcifying marine organisms, including reef-building corals, will be affected by the decline of the carbonate saturation state. However, it is still unclear how corals will respond to these changes, as their skeletal formation is biologically mediated and occurs in isolated space rather than directly from seawater. In corals new skeletal material is precipitated in the subcalicoblastic space between the skeleton and the calicoblastic epithelium which, does not exceed a few nanometers and contains the ''calcifying fluid''. The goal of our project is to understand how these fluids respond to changes in the surrounding seawater and in turn affects the biologically mediated calcification mechanisms at the molecular, cellular and tissue levels. While it is generally thought that an organic matrix, which contain a suite of proteins, lipids and poly-saccharides, take part in calcification process, the specific mechanism by which the mineral is precipitated is unknown. The organic matrix composed of two fractions: the soluble organic matrix (SOM) and the insoluble organic matrix (IOM). It is suggested that the IOM plays a role as structural proteins forming a framework for crystal growth whereas the SOM plays a role in nucleation and crystal growth. To address this question we have investigated both the structural framework proteins (Drake et al abstract submitted to the AGU fall meeting) the role of proteins in nucleation and crystal growth (this work). Here, we established cell cultures and sequenced the 458-megabase genome of the stony coral, Stylophora pistillata, using next-generation sequencing technology. This genome contains 21,678 predicted protein-coding genes. Many of the known protein components of invertebrate skeletal matrices are acidic and/or contain repeated sequences. We searched for genes encoding

  2. A too acid world for coral reefs; Un monde trop acide pour les recifs coralliens

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Allemand, D.; Reynaud, St. [Centre Scientifique de Monaco (Monaco); Universite de Nice-Sofia Antipolis, 06 (France); Salvat, B. [Universite de Perpignan, USR-3278 CNRS - EPHE, 66 (France)

    2010-09-15

    While briefly presenting how corals grow and exchange with their environment and after having recalled that temperature increase was already a threat for them, this article outlines that ocean acidification is now considered as another danger. This acidification is due to the dissolution in sea water of CO{sub 2} produced by human activities. This entails a slower calcification which is the process by which corals grow their skeleton. But, some researches showed that some corals manage to survive normally in such acid conditions, and even without skeleton for some other species. Anyhow, coral reefs will tend to disappear with environmental and socio-economical consequences

  3. Virus-host interactions and their roles in coral reef health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurber, Rebecca Vega; Payet, Jérôme P; Thurber, Andrew R; Correa, Adrienne M S

    2017-04-01

    Coral reefs occur in nutrient-poor shallow waters, constitute biodiversity and productivity hotspots, and are threatened by anthropogenic disturbance. This Review provides an introduction to coral reef virology and emphasizes the links between viruses, coral mortality and reef ecosystem decline. We describe the distinctive benthic-associated and water-column- associated viromes that are unique to coral reefs, which have received less attention than viruses in open-ocean systems. We hypothesize that viruses of bacteria and eukaryotes dynamically interact with their hosts in the water column and with scleractinian (stony) corals to influence microbial community dynamics, coral bleaching and disease, and reef biogeochemical cycling. Last, we outline how marine viruses are an integral part of the reef system and suggest that the influence of viruses on reef function is an essential component of these globally important environments.

  4. Distribution and prevalence of coral diseases in the Veracruz Reef System, Southern Gulf of Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carricart-Ganivet, J P; Beltrán-Torres, A U; Horta-Puga, G

    2011-07-12

    Ten reefs of the Veracruz Reef System (VRS) were surveyed to evaluate the distribution and prevalence of diseases that affect stony corals. Total disease prevalence on corals in the VRS was 4.8%. Seven diseases affecting 6 coral genera (4 of which are the most abundant) were observed in 85.2% of the evaluated sites. As observed in other reefs of the Caribbean, dark spots disease had the highest prevalence (2.9%) and widest distribution. The incidence of disease showed a patchy distribution, with prevalence being significantly higher on the reef flats than on the windward and leeward sides.

  5. The Milky Way Skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zucker, Catherine; Battersby, Cara; Goodman, Alyssa A.

    2015-01-01

    Recently, Goodman et al. (2014) argued that a very long, very thin infrared dark cloud 'Nessie' lies directly in the Galactic mid-plane and runs along the Scutum-Centaurus arm in position-position-velocity space as traced by low density CO and high density NH3 gas. Nessie was presented as the first 'bone' of the Milky Way, an extraordinarily long, thin, high contrast filament that can be used to map our galaxy's 'skeleton.' We present the first evidence of additional 'bones' in the Milky Way Galaxy, arguing that Nessie is not a curiosity but one of many filaments that could potentially trace galactic structure. Our ten bone candidates are all long, filamentary, mid-infrared extinction features which lie parallel to, and no more than twenty parsecs from, the physical Galactic mid-plane. We use CO, N2H+, and NH3 radial velocity data to establish the location of the candidates in position-velocity space. Of the ten filaments, three candidates have a projected aspect ratio of >50:1 and run along, or extremely close to, the Scutum-Centaurus arm in position-velocity space. Evidence suggests that these three candidates are Nessie-like features which mark the location of the spiral arms in both physical space and position-velocity space. Other candidates could be spurs, feathers, or interarm clouds associated with the Milky Way's galactic structure. As molecular spectral-line and extinction maps cover more of the sky at increasing resolution and sensitivity, we hope to find more bones in future studies, to ultimately create a global-fit to the Galaxy's spiral arms by piecing together individual skeletal features. This work is supported in part by the NSF REU and DOD ASSURE programs under NSF grant no. 1262851 and by the Smithsonian Institution.

  6. Skeletal light-scattering accelerates bleaching response in reef-building corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swain, Timothy D; DuBois, Emily; Gomes, Andrew; Stoyneva, Valentina P; Radosevich, Andrew J; Henss, Jillian; Wagner, Michelle E; Derbas, Justin; Grooms, Hannah W; Velazquez, Elizabeth M; Traub, Joshua; Kennedy, Brian J; Grigorescu, Arabela A; Westneat, Mark W; Sanborn, Kevin; Levine, Shoshana; Schick, Mark; Parsons, George; Biggs, Brendan C; Rogers, Jeremy D; Backman, Vadim; Marcelino, Luisa A

    2016-03-21

    At the forefront of ecosystems adversely affected by climate change, coral reefs are sensitive to anomalously high temperatures which disassociate (bleaching) photosynthetic symbionts (Symbiodinium) from coral hosts and cause increasingly frequent and severe mass mortality events. Susceptibility to bleaching and mortality is variable among corals, and is determined by unknown proportions of environmental history and the synergy of Symbiodinium- and coral-specific properties. Symbiodinium live within host tissues overlaying the coral skeleton, which increases light availability through multiple light-scattering, forming one of the most efficient biological collectors of solar radiation. Light-transport in the upper ~200 μm layer of corals skeletons (measured as 'microscopic' reduced-scattering coefficient, μ'(S,m)), has been identified as a determinant of excess light increase during bleaching and is therefore a potential determinant of the differential rate and severity of bleaching response among coral species. Here we experimentally demonstrate (in ten coral species) that, under thermal stress alone or combined thermal and light stress, low-μ'(S,m) corals bleach at higher rate and severity than high-μ'(S,m) corals and the Symbiodinium associated with low-μ'(S,m) corals experience twice the decrease in photochemical efficiency. We further modelled the light absorbed by Symbiodinium due to skeletal-scattering and show that the estimated skeleton-dependent light absorbed by Symbiodinium (per unit of photosynthetic pigment) and the temporal rate of increase in absorbed light during bleaching are several fold higher in low-μ'(S,m) corals. While symbionts associated with low-[Formula: see text] corals receive less total light from the skeleton, they experience a higher rate of light increase once bleaching is initiated and absorbing bodies are lost; further precipitating the bleaching response. Because microscopic skeletal light-scattering is a robust predictor

  7. Fluid inclusions in stony meteorites - A cautionary note

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudnick, R. L.; Ashwal, L. D.; Henry, D. J.; Gibson, E. K., Jr.; Roedder, E.; Belkin, H. E.; Colucci, M. T.

    1985-01-01

    Newly discovered fluid inclusions in thin sections of Bjurbole chondrules, shergottite EETA79001, lunar meteorite ALHA81005, and Apollo 16 glasses possess physical properties similar to those of fluid inclusions found in thin sections of five stony meteorites recently described by Warner et al. (1983). The distribution and physical properties of these new fluid inclusions indicate they may be artifacts of thin section preparation; it is suggested that saw coolant was sucked into vacuum vesicles in glasses and minerals through submicroscopic fractures produced during sawing. The similarities between these fluid inclusions and fluid inclusions previously described by Warner et al. (1983) indicate that many of the fluid inclusions reported earlier may be artifacts. Consequently, the origin of any fluid inclusions observed in thin sections of extraterrestrial materials must be interpreted with caution. The most probable true extraterrestrial fluid inclusions are those that have been observed in grains prepared without exposure to liquids of any kind.

  8. Stony Brook's Graduate Courses in Clear, Vivid, Conversational Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bass, E.

    2011-12-01

    Graduate students in the sciences at Stony Brook University are taking for-credit courses to learn to communicate more effectively about science with people outside their disciplines, including public officials, the press, students, potential funders and employers, colleagues in other fields, and the general public. Five Communicating Science courses are offered; two more will be added in January, 2012. The courses are offered by the School of Journalism and developed by the Center for Communicating Science (CCS). This interdisciplinary center was founded in 2009, with the participation of Alan Alda, the actor, writer, director and longtime advocate for science, who is a Visiting Professor at Stony Brook. At the core of the program are three 1-credit (14-hour) modules that rely on experiential learning, repeated practice and immediate, interactive feedback. In Distilling Your Message, students practice speaking clearly, vividly and conversationally about their work at different levels of complexity and formality to different audiences, using storytelling techniques where appropriate. In Writing for the Public, they extend these skills into writing. In Improvisation for Scientists, the most unconventional of the courses, students play improvisational theater games to help themselves connect more directly, personally and responsively with their audiences. In their first two semesters, the courses are expected to serve about 90 students, taking a total of about 180 credits. Most of the courses have filled quickly, mixing master's and doctoral students from more than a dozen fields, including marine and atmospheric sciences. Three to six credits of Communicating Science courses are required for students in two programs, an MA in Marine Conservation and Policy and an Advanced Certificate in Health Communications. The content and methods of the courses are based largely on lessons learned from evaluations of all-day workshops that CCS has conducted for more than 250

  9. Elemental composition analysis of stony meteorites discovered in Phitsanulok, Thailand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loylip, T.; Wannawichian, S.

    2017-09-01

    A meteorite is a fragment of pure stone, iron or the mixture of stony-iron. The falling of meteorites into Earth’s surface is part of Earth’s accretion process from dust and rocks in our solar system. When these fragments come close enough to the Earth to be attracted by its gravity, they may fall into the Earth. Following the detection of objects that fall from the sky onto a home in Phitsanulok in June 27, the meteorites were analyzed by scanning electron microscopy coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM/EDS) instruments. The results from SEM/EDS analysis show that the meteorites are mainly composed of Fe-Ni and Fe-s. The meteorite is Achondrite, a class of meteorite which does not contain Chondrule. The meteorites in this work are thought to be part of a large asteroid.

  10. Dissepiments, density bands and signatures of thermal stress in Porites skeletons

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeCarlo, Thomas M.; Cohen, Anne L.

    2017-09-01

    The skeletons of many reef-building corals are accreted with rhythmic structural patterns that serve as valuable sclerochronometers. Annual high- and low-density band couplets, visible in X-radiographs or computed tomography scans, are used to construct age models for paleoclimate reconstructions and to track variability in coral growth over time. In some corals, discrete, anomalously high-density bands, called "stress bands," preserve information about coral bleaching. However, the mechanisms underlying the formation of coral skeletal density banding remain unclear. Dissepiments—thin, horizontal sheets of calcium carbonate accreted by the coral to support the living polyp—play a key role in the upward growth of the colony. Here, we first conducted a vital staining experiment to test whether dissepiments were accreted with lunar periodicity in Porites coral skeleton, as previously hypothesized. Over 6, 15, and 21 months, dissepiments consistently formed in a 1:1 ratio to the number of full moons elapsed over each study period. We measured dissepiment spacing to reconstruct multiple years of monthly skeletal extension rates in two Porites colonies from Palmyra Atoll and in another from Palau that bleached in 1998 under anomalously high sea temperatures. Spacing between successive dissepiments exhibited strong seasonality in corals containing annual density bands, with narrow (wide) spacing associated with high (low) density, respectively. A high-density "stress band" accreted during the 1998 bleaching event was associated with anomalously low dissepiment spacing and missed dissepiments, implying that thermal stress disrupts skeletal extension. Further, uranium/calcium ratios increased within stress bands, indicating a reduction in the carbonate ion concentration of the coral's calcifying fluid under stress. Our study verifies the lunar periodicity of dissepiments, provides a mechanistic basis for the formation of annual density bands in Porites, and reveals the

  11. Precambrian Skeletonized Microbial Eukaryotes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipps, Jere H.

    2017-04-01

    Skeletal heterotrophic eukaryotes are mostly absent from the Precambrian, although algal eukaryotes appear about 2.2 billion years ago. Tintinnids, radiolaria and foraminifera have molecular origins well back into the Precambrian yet no representatives of these groups are known with certainty in that time. These data infer times of the last common ancestors, not the appearance of true representatives of these groups which may well have diversified or not been preserved since those splits. Previous reports of these groups in the Precambrian are misinterpretations of other objects in the fossil record. Reported tintinnids at 1600 mya from China are metamorphic shards or mineral artifacts, the many specimens from 635-715 mya in Mongolia may be eukaryotes but they are not tintinnids, and the putative tintinnids at 580 mya in the Doushantou formation of China are diagenetic alterations of well-known acritarchs. The oldest supposed foraminiferan is Titanotheca from 550 to 565 mya rocks in South America and Africa is based on the occurrence of rutile in the tests and in a few modern agglutinated foraminifera, as well as the agglutinated tests. Neither of these nor the morphology are characteristic of foraminifera; hence these fossils remain as indeterminate microfossils. Platysolenites, an agglutinated tube identical to the modern foraminiferan Bathysiphon, occurs in the latest Neoproterozoic in Russia, Canada, and the USA (California). Some of the larger fossils occurring in typical Ediacaran (late Neoproterozoic) assemblages may be xenophyophorids (very large foraminifera), but the comparison is disputed and flawed. Radiolaria, on occasion, have been reported in the Precambrian, but the earliest known clearly identifiable ones are in the Cambrian. The only certain Precambrian heterotrophic skeletal eukaryotes (thecamoebians) occur in fresh-water rocks at about 750 mya. Skeletonized radiolaria and foraminifera appear sparsely in the Cambrian and radiate in the Ordovician

  12. Biotic control of skeletal growth by scleractinian corals in aragonite-calcite seas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomihiko Higuchi

    Full Text Available Modern scleractinian coral skeletons are commonly composed of aragonite, the orthorhombic form of CaCO3. Under certain conditions, modern corals produce calcite as a secondary precipitate to fill pore space. However, coral construction of primary skeletons from calcite has yet to be demonstrated. We report a calcitic primary skeleton produced by the modern scleractinian coral Acropora tenuis. When uncalcified juveniles were incubated from the larval stage in seawater with low mMg/Ca levels, the juveniles constructed calcitic crystals in parts of the primary skeleton such as the septa; the deposits were observable under Raman microscopy. Using scanning electron microscopy, we observed different crystal morphologies of aragonite and calcite in a single juvenile skeleton. Quantitative analysis using X-ray diffraction showed that the majority of the skeleton was composed of aragonite even though we had exposed the juveniles to manipulated seawater before their initial crystal nucleation and growth processes. Our results indicate that the modern scleractinian coral Acropora mainly produces aragonite skeletons in both aragonite and calcite seas, but also has the ability to use calcite for part of its skeletal growth when incubated in calcite seas.

  13. How do corals make rocks?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falkowski, P. G.; Mass, T.; Drake, J.; Schaller, M. F.; Rosenthal, Y.; Schofield, O.; Sherrell, R. M.

    2014-12-01

    We have developed a three pronged approach to understanding how corals precipitate aragonite crystals and contain proxy biogeochemical information. Using proteomic and genomic approaches, we have identified 35 proteins in coral skeletons. Among these are a series of coral acidic proteins (CARPs). Based on their gene sequences, we cloned a subset of these proteins and purified them. Each of the proteins precipitate aragonite in vitro in unamended seawater. Antibodies raised against these proteins react with individual crystals of the native coral, clearly revealing that they are part of a biomineral structure. Based on the primary structure of the proteins we have developed a model of the precipitation reaction that focuses on a Lewis acid displacement of protons from bicarbonate anions by calcium ligated to the carboxyl groups on the CARPs. The reactions are highly acidic and are not manifestly influenced by pH above ca. 6. These results suggest that corals will maintain the ability to calcify in the coming centuries, despite acidification of the oceans.

  14. How does the proliferation of the coral-killing sponge Terpios hoshinota affect benthic community structure on coral reefs?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Jennifer; Patterson, Mark; Summers, Natalie; Miternique, Céline; Montocchio, Emma; Vitry, Eugene

    2016-09-01

    Terpios hoshinota is an encrusting sponge and a fierce space competitor. It kills stony corals by overgrowing them and can impact reefs on the square kilometer scale. We investigated an outbreak of T. hoshinota in 2014 at the island of Mauritius to determine its impacts on coral community structure. Surveys were conducted at the putative outbreak center, an adjacent area, and around the island to determine the extent of spread of the sponge and which organisms it impacted. In addition, quadrats were monitored for 5 months (July-December) to measure the spreading rates of T. hoshinota and Acropora austera in areas both with and without T. hoshinota. The photosynthetic capabilities of T. hoshinota and A. austera were also measured. Terpios hoshinota was well established, covering 13% of an estimated 416 m2 of available hard coral substrate at the putative outbreak center, and 10% of an estimated 588 m2 of available hard coral substrate at the adjacent area. The sponge was observed at only one other site around Mauritius. Terpios hoshinota and A. austera increased their planar areas by 26.9 and 13.9%, respectively, over five months. No new colonies of T. hoshinota were recorded in adjacent sponge-free control areas, suggesting that sponge recruitment is very low during austral winter and spring. The sponge was observed to overgrow five stony corals; however, it showed a preference for branching corals, especially A. austera. This is the first time that a statistically significant coral substrate preference by T. hoshinota has been reported. Terpios hoshinota also had a significantly higher photosynthetic capacity than A. austera at irradiance >500 μmol photons m-2 s-1, a possible explanation for its high spreading rate. We discuss the long-term implications of the proliferation of T. hoshinota on community structure and dynamics of our study site.

  15. Coral Reefs

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Riegl, Bernhard; Bruckner, Andy; Coles, Steve L; Renaud, Philip; Dodge, Richard E

    2009-01-01

    .... Anthropogenic modification of chemical and physical atmospheric dynamics that cause coral death by bleaching and newly emergent diseases due to increased heat and irradiation, as well as decline...

  16. Shared skeletal support in a coral-hydroid symbiosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olga Pantos

    Full Text Available Hydroids form symbiotic relationships with a range of invertebrate hosts. Where they live with colonial invertebrates such as corals or bryozoans the hydroids may benefit from the physical support and protection of their host's hard exoskeleton, but how they interact with them is unknown. Electron microscopy was used to investigate the physical interactions between the colonial hydroid Zanclea margaritae and its reef-building coral host Acropora muricata. The hydroid tissues extend below the coral tissue surface sitting in direct contact with the host's skeleton. Although this arrangement provides the hydroid with protective support, it also presents problems of potential interference with the coral's growth processes and exposes the hydroid to overgrowth and smothering. Desmocytes located within the epidermal layer of the hydroid's perisarc-free hydrorhizae fasten it to the coral skeleton. The large apical surface area of the desmocyte and high bifurcation of the distal end within the mesoglea, as well as the clustering of desmocytes suggests that a very strong attachment between the hydroid and the coral skeleton. This is the first study to provide a detailed description of how symbiotic hydroids attach to their host's skeleton, utilising it for physical support. Results suggest that the loss of perisarc, a characteristic commonly associated with symbiosis, allows the hydroid to utilise desmocytes for attachment. The use of these anchoring structures provides a dynamic method of attachment, facilitating detachment from the coral skeleton during extension, thereby avoiding overgrowth and smothering enabling the hydroid to remain within the host colony for prolonged periods of time.

  17. Multiple light scattering and absorption in reef-building corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terán, Emiliano; Méndez, Eugenio R; Enríquez, Susana; Iglesias-Prieto, Roberto

    2010-09-20

    We present an experimental and numerical study of the effects of multiple scattering on the optical properties of reef-building corals. For this, we propose a simplified optical model of the coral and describe in some detail methods for characterizing the coral skeleton and the layer containing the symbiotic algae. The model is used to study the absorption of light by the layer of tissue containing the microalgae by means of Monte Carlo simulations. The results show that, through scattering, the skeleton homogenizes and enhances the light environment in which the symbionts live. We also present results that illustrate the modification of the internal light environment when the corals loose symbionts or pigmentation.

  18. Learning to Communicate Science: Stony Brook University's Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bass, E.

    2012-12-01

    Stony Brook University offers an unusual series of short courses to help science graduate students learn to communicate more effectively about science with people outside their disciplines, including the public, public officials, potential funders and employers, students, the press, and colleagues in other fields. The courses include six 1-credit (14-hour) modules in oral and written communication that rely on practice and interactive feedback. More than 120 master's and PhD students, from more than 16 departments, have taken at least one of the courses since spring 2011. Most students who try one module end up taking two or three. An additional course for medical and nursing students was added in fall 2012. The courses are offered in the School of Journalism and were developed by the Center for Communicating Science (CCS). CCS was founded in 2009, with the participation of Alan Alda, the actor, writer, and longtime advocate for science, who is a Visiting Professor at Stony Brook. The Communicating Science courses have received strong institutional support and enthusiastic reviews. They are required by two programs, an MA in Marine Conservation and Policy and an Advanced Certificate in Health Communications. Two successive Provosts have subsidized course costs for PhD students, and Graduate School leaders are working to establish a steady funding stream to allow expansion of the program. Our aspiration at CCS is for every science graduate student to receive some training in communicating about science to the public. Several factors have helped in establishing the program: --CCS' multidisciplinary nature helped build support, with participation by faculty from across the campus, including not only the natural sciences, engineering, and medicine, but journalism, theatre arts, and the Writing Program, as well as nearby Brookhaven National Laboratory and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. --Before offering courses, CCS conducted all-day workshops and high

  19. Spectral luminescence and geochemistry of coral aragonite: Effects of whole-core treatment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nagtegaal, R.; Grove, C.A.; Kasper, S.; Zinke, J.; Brummer, G.J.A.

    2012-01-01

    Luminescent and geochemical properties of coral skeletons are increasingly used for time-series analysis to resolve past and ongoing changes in environmental and climatic conditions. Corals also contain non-skeletal matter which not only quenches luminescence but is also reported to compromise

  20. Submarine Groundwater Discharge in Stony Brook Harbor, NY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durand, J. M.; Young, C.; Wong, T.; Hanson, G. N.

    2012-12-01

    As nutrients can significantly impact coastal ecosystems, understanding their path to embayments and oceans is crucial. In Stony Brook Harbor (Long Island, NY), submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) is the only significant contribution of freshwater and thus constitutes the main pathway for nutrients, which may eventually reach Long Island Sound. Subterranean estuaries have been shown to be highly reactive zones where nitrogen attenuation can occur. Understanding the fate of nitrogen in Stony Brook Harbor requires knowing the volume of groundwater entering the bay as well as the amount of denitrification, in the context of the hydrogeological framework. This is achieved by combining electrical resistivity survey, water sampling in piezometers, point conductivity and seepage measurements. A Trident probe inserted 60 cm deep into the sediments allows measuring the conductivity and temperature of the sediments and the overlying seawater. In spring 2011, five Trident transects spreading across the head of the harbor were used as a preliminary study to reveal potential locations for SGD. Locations with significant difference between sediment and seawater temperature and/or conductivities were further investigated using an AGI SuperSting 8-channel receiver resistivity meter. Two ultrasonic seepage meters were deployed in May and July 2011 about 20 m below the low tide mark. Five piezometers were aligned parallel to one resistivity survey. Our resistivity data indicate superficial mixing in the intertidal zone. The freshwater extends quite far under the seafloor, above 67 meters after the low tide mark for one location. The freshwater/saltwater interface seems to be almost horizontal. The piezometer data agree relatively well with the resistivity data. The preliminary average seepage rates observed vary from 3 to 60 cm/d. The resistivity sections reveal the presence of a thin layer of high conductivity above the low tide mark. This matches the observation of a superficial

  1. Transcriptome Analysis of the Scleractinian Coral Stylophora pistillata

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmon-Divon, Mali; Katzenellenbogen, Mark; Tambutté, Sylvie; Bertucci, Anthony; Hoegh-Guldberg, Ove; Deleury, Emeline; Allemand, Denis; Levy, Oren

    2014-01-01

    The principal architects of coral reefs are the scleractinian corals; these species are divided in two major clades referred to as “robust” and “complex” corals. Although the molecular diversity of the “complex” clade has received considerable attention, with several expressed sequence tag (EST) libraries and a complete genome sequence having been constructed, the “robust” corals have received far less attention, despite the fact that robust corals have been prominent focal points for ecological and physiological studies. Filling this gap affords important opportunities to extend these studies and to improve our understanding of the differences between the two major clades. Here, we present an EST library from Stylophora pistillata (Esper 1797) and systematically analyze the assembled transcripts compared to putative homologs from the complete proteomes of six well-characterized metazoans: Nematostella vectensis, Hydra magnipapillata, Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, Ciona intestinalis and Homo sapiens. Furthermore, comparative analyses of the Stylophora pistillata ESTs were performed against several Cnidaria from the Scleractinia, Actiniaria and Hydrozoa, as well as against other stony corals separately. Functional characterization of S. pistillata transcripts into KOG/COG categories and further description of Wnt and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling pathways showed that the assembled EST library provides sufficient data and coverage. These features of this new library suggest considerable opportunities for extending our understanding of the molecular and physiological behavior of “robust” corals. PMID:24551124

  2. Transcriptome analysis of the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarit Karako-Lampert

    Full Text Available The principal architects of coral reefs are the scleractinian corals; these species are divided in two major clades referred to as "robust" and "complex" corals. Although the molecular diversity of the "complex" clade has received considerable attention, with several expressed sequence tag (EST libraries and a complete genome sequence having been constructed, the "robust" corals have received far less attention, despite the fact that robust corals have been prominent focal points for ecological and physiological studies. Filling this gap affords important opportunities to extend these studies and to improve our understanding of the differences between the two major clades. Here, we present an EST library from Stylophora pistillata (Esper 1797 and systematically analyze the assembled transcripts compared to putative homologs from the complete proteomes of six well-characterized metazoans: Nematostella vectensis, Hydra magnipapillata, Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, Ciona intestinalis and Homo sapiens. Furthermore, comparative analyses of the Stylophora pistillata ESTs were performed against several Cnidaria from the Scleractinia, Actiniaria and Hydrozoa, as well as against other stony corals separately. Functional characterization of S. pistillata transcripts into KOG/COG categories and further description of Wnt and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP signaling pathways showed that the assembled EST library provides sufficient data and coverage. These features of this new library suggest considerable opportunities for extending our understanding of the molecular and physiological behavior of "robust" corals.

  3. North Atlantic climate variability recorded in reef corals from Bermuda.

    OpenAIRE

    Draschba , S.

    1999-01-01

    Climate sensitive proxies can open windows into tines, for which instrumental observations are lacking. A strong tool for gaining insight into climate changes through the most recent geological period of the past several centuries, is the use of massive reef coral skeletons. The research reported in this thesis analyzes climate sensitive coral proxy records from Bermuda and is directed at characterizing seasonal, inter-annual and long-term climate fluctuations relevant to the western Sargasso...

  4. Detecting Terrain Stoniness From Airborne Laser Scanning Data †

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paavo Nevalainen

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Three methods to estimate the presence of ground surface stones from publicly available Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS point clouds are presented. The first method approximates the local curvature by local linear multi-scale fitting, and the second method uses Discrete-Differential Gaussian curvature based on the ground surface triangulation. The third baseline method applies Laplace filtering to Digital Elevation Model (DEM in a 2 m regular grid data. All methods produce an approximate Gaussian curvature distribution which is then vectorized and classified by logistic regression. Two training data sets consisted of 88 and 674 polygons of mass-flow deposits, respectively. The locality of the polygon samples is a sparse canopy boreal forest, where the density of ALS ground returns is sufficiently high to reveal information about terrain micro-topography. The surface stoniness of each polygon sample was categorized for supervised learning by expert observation on the site. The leave-pair-out (L2O cross-validation of the local linear fit method results in the area under curve A U C = 0 . 74 and A U C = 0 . 85 on two data sets, respectively. This performance can be expected to suit real world applications such as detecting coarse-grained sediments for infrastructure construction. A wall-to-wall predictor based on the study was demonstrated.

  5. A new conceptual model of coral biomineralisation: hypoxia as the physiological driver of skeletal extension

    OpenAIRE

    S. Wooldridge

    2013-01-01

    That corals skeletons are built of aragonite crystals with taxonomy-linked ultrastructure has been well understood since the 19th century. Yet, the way by which corals control this crystallization process remains an unsolved question. Here, I outline a new conceptual model of coral biomineralisation that endeavours to relate known skeletal features with homeostatic functions beyond traditional growth (structural) determinants. In particular, I propose that the dominant physiological driver of...

  6. Mutualistic damselfish induce higher photosynthetic rates in their host coral.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Herrera, Nur; Ferse, Sebastian C A; Kunzmann, Andreas; Genin, Amatzia

    2017-05-15

    Coral reefs are amongst the most diverse ecosystems on Earth where complex inter-specific interactions are ubiquitous. An example of such interactions is the mutualistic relationship between damselfishes and branching corals in the Northern Red Sea, where the fish use corals as shelter and provide them with nutrients, enhance the flow between their branches, and protect them from predators. By enhancing the flow between the coral branches, the fish ventilate the coral's inner zone, mitigating hypoxic conditions that otherwise develop within that zone during the night. Here, we tested, for the first time, the effects of the damselfish Dascyllus marginatus on photosynthesis and respiration in its host coral Stylophora pistillata Laboratory experiments using an intermittent-flow respirometer showed that the presence of fish between the coral branches under light conditions augmented the coral's photosynthetic rate. No effect on the coral's respiration was found under dark conditions. When a fish was allowed to enter the inner zone of a dead coral skeleton, its respiration was higher than when it was in a live coral. Field observations indicated that damselfish were present between coral branches 18-34% of the time during daylight hours and at all times during the night. Considering the changes induced by the fish together with the proportion of time they were found between coral branches in the field, the effect of the fish amounted to an augmentation of 3-6% of the coral's daily photosynthesis. Our findings reveal a previously unknown positive contribution of coral-dwelling fish to their host's photosynthesis. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  7. Parallel FFT using Eden Skeletons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berthold, Jost; Dieterle, Mischa; Lobachev, Oleg

    2009-01-01

    The paper investigates and compares skeleton-based Eden implementations of different FFT-algorithms on workstation clusters with distributed memory. Our experiments show that the basic divide-and-conquer versions suffer from an inherent input distribution and result collection problem. Advanced...

  8. Using X-Ray Fluorescence Technique to Quantify Metal Concentration in Coral Cores from Belize

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kingsley, C.; Bhattacharya, A.; Hangsterfer, A.; Carilli, J.; Field, D. B.

    2016-12-01

    Caribbean coral reefs are some of the most threatened marine ecosystems in the world. Research appears to suggest that environmental stressors of local origin, such as sediment run off, can reduce the resilience of these reefs to global threats such as ocean warming. Sedimentation can stunt coral growth, reduce its resilience, and it is possible that trapped material could render coral skeletons brittle (personal discussions). Material trapped in coral skeletons can provide information on the sources of particulate matter in the ocean ecosystem. Despite the importance of quantifying sources and types of materials trapped in corals, the research community is yet to fully develop techniques that allow accurate representation of trapped matter, which is potentially a major source of metal content in reef building coral skeletons. The dataset presented here explores the usefulness of X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF), a widely used tool in environmental studies (but generally not in corals), to estimate metal content in coral cores collected from four locations near Belize, with varying degrees of impact from coastal processes. The coral cores together cover a period of 1862-2006. Trace, major, and minor metal content from these cores have been well-studied using solution-based ICP-MS, providing us with the unique opportunity to test the efficacy of XRF technique in characterizing metal content in these coral cores. We have measured more than 50 metals using XRF every two millimeters along slabs removed from the middle of a coral core to characterize materials present in coral skeletons. We compared the results from XRF to solution-based ICP-MS - that involves dissolving subsamples of coral skeleton to measure metal content. Overall, it appears that the non-destructive XRF technique is a viable supplement in determining sediment and metal content in coral cores, and may be particularly helpful for assessing resistant phases such as grains of sediment that are not fully

  9. Identification and prevalence of coral diseases on three Western Indian Ocean coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Séré, Mathieu G; Chabanet, Pascale; Turquet, Jean; Quod, Jean-Pascal; Schleyer, Michael H

    2015-06-03

    Coral diseases have caused a substantial decline in the biodiversity and abundance of reef-building corals. To date, more than 30 distinct diseases of scleractinian corals have been reported, which cause progressive tissue loss and/or affect coral growth, reproductive capacity, recruitment, species diversity and the abundance of reef-associated organisms. While coral disease research has increased over the last 4 decades, very little is known about coral diseases in the Western Indian Ocean. Surveys conducted at multiple sites in Reunion, South Africa and Mayotte between August 2010 and June 2012 revealed the presence of 6 main coral diseases: black band disease (BBD), white syndrome (WS), pink line syndrome (PLS), growth anomalies (GA), skeleton eroding band (SEB) and Porites white patch syndrome (PWPS). Overall, disease prevalence was higher in Reunion (7.5 ± 2.2%; mean ± SE) compared to South Africa (3.9 ± 0.8%) and Mayotte (2.7 ± 0.3%). Across locations, Acropora and Porites were the genera most susceptible to disease. Spatial variability was detected in both Reunion and South Africa, with BBD and WS more prevalent on shallow than deep reefs. There was also evidence of seasonality in 2 diseases: the prevalence of BBD and WS was higher in summer than winter. This was the first study to investigate the ecology of coral diseases, providing both qualitative and quantitative data, on Western Indian Ocean reefs, and surveys should be expanded to confirm these patterns.

  10. Coral morphology and sedimentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duckworth, Alan; Giofre, Natalie; Jones, Ross

    2017-08-29

    The sediment rejection ability of 8 coral species of 5 families and 3 morphologies were assessed in a series of short term exposure tests over a sedimentation range of 0.5-40mgcm(-2)d(-1) and one longer term exposure test of 235mgcm(-2). Sediment accumulation rates on live corals and dead (enamel-covered) skeletons varied between morphologies, with branching species often more adept at self-cleaning. Flow rates (0-17cms(-1)) significantly affected sediment-shedding ability as did differences in particle sizes, with coarse silt rejected faster than fine silt, but only at very high (235mgcm(-2)) deposition rates. Siliciclastic sediment was rejected faster than carbonate sediments and smothering for many days by mms of low organic content carbonate sediment resulted in bleaching, but no mortality. The findings are discussed with respect to turbidity generated in natural and dredging-related resuspension events and in the context for impact prediction for dredging projects. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Development of hydroxyapatite from Setiu coral via hydrothermal method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adnen, Noor Asliza Ismail; Halim, Nur Aini Abd; Nor, Mohd Al Amin Muhamad

    2017-09-01

    Coral and converted coralline hydroxyapatites (CHAp) have been widely used in biomedical application as orbital implant and bone graft substitute. In this study, the effect of calcination temperature towards properties of hydroxyapatite were investigated. Three different species of corals which commonly found in Setiu, Terengganu was identified based on coral skeleton and its mean pore diameter was analysed using SEM image analyzer. Corals sample undergo hydrothermal process at calcination temperatures range from 200°C to 240°C with addition of di-ammonium hydrogen phosphate as mineralizer. Three species of corals was identified as Platygyra Lamellina sp., Leptoria Phrygia sp. and Pocillopora Damicornis sp. The mean pore diameter of Setiu corals are 0.751mm, 0.495mm and 0.313mm for Platygyra Lamellina sp., Leptoria Phrygia sp. and Pocillopora Damicornis sp., respectively. The XRD diffractograms showed that the raw corals was sucessfully converted to hydroxyapatite (HA) with presence of minor impurities for all type of corals. Calcination temperature of 240°C was found the best temperature to convert coral to coralline hydroxyapatite. Based on this finding, coral species found in Setiu, Terengganu has great potential to be used as bone graft substitutes.

  12. Doom and boom on a resilient reef: climate change, algal overgrowth and coral recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaz-Pulido, Guillermo; McCook, Laurence J; Dove, Sophie; Berkelmans, Ray; Roff, George; Kline, David I; Weeks, Scarla; Evans, Richard D; Williamson, David H; Hoegh-Guldberg, Ove

    2009-01-01

    Coral reefs around the world are experiencing large-scale degradation, largely due to global climate change, overfishing, diseases and eutrophication. Climate change models suggest increasing frequency and severity of warming-induced coral bleaching events, with consequent increases in coral mortality and algal overgrowth. Critically, the recovery of damaged reefs will depend on the reversibility of seaweed blooms, generally considered to depend on grazing of the seaweed, and replenishment of corals by larvae that successfully recruit to damaged reefs. These processes usually take years to decades to bring a reef back to coral dominance. In 2006, mass bleaching of corals on inshore reefs of the Great Barrier Reef caused high coral mortality. Here we show that this coral mortality was followed by an unprecedented bloom of a single species of unpalatable seaweed (Lobophora variegata), colonizing dead coral skeletons, but that corals on these reefs recovered dramatically, in less than a year. Unexpectedly, this rapid reversal did not involve reestablishment of corals by recruitment of coral larvae, as often assumed, but depended on several ecological mechanisms previously underestimated. These mechanisms of ecological recovery included rapid regeneration rates of remnant coral tissue, very high competitive ability of the corals allowing them to out-compete the seaweed, a natural seasonal decline in the particular species of dominant seaweed, and an effective marine protected area system. Our study provides a key example of the doom and boom of a highly resilient reef, and new insights into the variability and mechanisms of reef resilience under rapid climate change.

  13. Calcification by juvenile corals under heterotrophy and elevated CO2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drenkard, E. J.; Cohen, A. L.; McCorkle, D. C.; de Putron, S. J.; Starczak, V. R.; Zicht, A. E.

    2013-09-01

    Ocean acidification (OA) threatens the existence of coral reefs by slowing the rate of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) production of framework-building corals thus reducing the amount of CaCO3 the reef can produce to counteract natural dissolution. Some evidence exists to suggest that elevated levels of dissolved inorganic nutrients can reduce the impact of OA on coral calcification. Here, we investigated the potential for enhanced energetic status of juvenile corals, achieved via heterotrophic feeding, to modulate the negative impact of OA on calcification. Larvae of the common Atlantic golf ball coral, Favia fragum, were collected and reared for 3 weeks under ambient (421 μatm) or significantly elevated (1,311 μatm) CO2 conditions. The metamorphosed, zooxanthellate spat were either fed brine shrimp (i.e., received nutrition from photosynthesis plus heterotrophy) or not fed (i.e., primarily autotrophic). Regardless of CO2 condition, the skeletons of fed corals exhibited accelerated development of septal cycles and were larger than those of unfed corals. At each CO2 level, fed corals accreted more CaCO3 than unfed corals, and fed corals reared under 1,311 μatm CO2 accreted as much CaCO3 as unfed corals reared under ambient CO2. However, feeding did not alter the sensitivity of calcification to increased CO2; ∆ calcification/∆Ω was comparable for fed and unfed corals. Our results suggest that calcification rates of nutritionally replete juvenile corals will decline as OA intensifies over the course of this century. Critically, however, such corals could maintain higher rates of skeletal growth and CaCO3 production under OA than those in nutritionally limited environments.

  14. Phylogenetically diverse denitrifying and ammonia-oxidizing bacteria in corals Alcyonium gracillimum and Tubastraea coccinea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Shan; Sun, Wei; Zhang, Fengli; Li, Zhiyong

    2013-10-01

    To date, the association of coral-bacteria and the ecological roles of bacterial symbionts in corals remain largely unknown. In particular, little is known about the community components of bacterial symbionts of corals involved in the process of denitrification and ammonia oxidation. In this study, the nitrite reductase (nirS and nirK) and ammonia monooxygenase subunit A (amoA) genes were used as functional markers. Diverse bacteria with the potential to be active as denitrifiers and ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) were found in two East China Sea corals: stony coral Alcyonium gracillimum and soft coral Tubastraea coccinea. The 16S rRNA gene library analysis demonstrated different communities of bacterial symbionts in these two corals of the same location. Nitrite reductase nirK gene was found only in T. coccinea, while both nirK and nirS genes were detected in A. gracillimum, which might be the result of the presence of different bacterial symbionts in these two corals. AOB rather than ammonia-oxidizing archaea were detected in both corals, suggesting that AOB might play an important role in the ammonia oxidation process of the corals. This study indicates that the coral bacterial symbionts with the potential for nitrite reduction and ammonia oxidation might have multiple ecological roles in the coral holobiont, which promotes our understanding of bacteria-mediated nitrogen cycling in corals. To our knowledge, this study is the first assessment of the community structure and phylogenetic diversity of denitrifying bacteria and AOB in corals based on nirK, nirS, and amoA gene library analysis.

  15. Benthic community structure on coral reefs exposed to intensive recreational snorkeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renfro, Bobbie; Chadwick, Nanette E

    2017-01-01

    Chronic anthropogenic disturbances on coral reefs in the form of overfishing and pollution can shift benthic community composition away from stony corals and toward macroalgae. The use of reefs for recreational snorkeling and diving potentially can lead to similar ecological impacts if not well-managed, but impacts of snorkeling on benthic organisms are not well understood. We quantified variation in benthic community structure along a gradient of snorkeling frequency in an intensively-visited portion of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. We determined rates of snorkeling in 6 water sections and rates of beach visitation in 4 adjacent land sections at Akumal Bay, Mexico. For each in-water section at 1-3 m depth, we also assessed the percent cover of benthic organisms including taxa of stony corals and macroalgae. Rates of recreational snorkeling varied from low in the southwestern to very high (>1000 snorkelers d-1) in the northeastern sections of the bay. Stony coral cover decreased and macroalgal cover increased significantly with levels of snorkeling, while trends varied among taxa for other organisms such as gorgonians, fire corals, and sea urchins. We conclude that benthic organisms appear to exhibit taxon-specific variation with levels of recreational snorkeling. To prevent further degradation, we recommend limitation of snorkeler visitation rates, coupled with visitor education and in-water guides to reduce reef-damaging behaviors by snorkelers in high-use areas. These types of management activities, integrated with reef monitoring and subsequent readjustment of management, have the potential to reverse the damage potentially inflicted on coral reefs by the expansion of reef-based recreational snorkeling.

  16. Benthic community structure on coral reefs exposed to intensive recreational snorkeling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bobbie Renfro

    Full Text Available Chronic anthropogenic disturbances on coral reefs in the form of overfishing and pollution can shift benthic community composition away from stony corals and toward macroalgae. The use of reefs for recreational snorkeling and diving potentially can lead to similar ecological impacts if not well-managed, but impacts of snorkeling on benthic organisms are not well understood. We quantified variation in benthic community structure along a gradient of snorkeling frequency in an intensively-visited portion of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. We determined rates of snorkeling in 6 water sections and rates of beach visitation in 4 adjacent land sections at Akumal Bay, Mexico. For each in-water section at 1-3 m depth, we also assessed the percent cover of benthic organisms including taxa of stony corals and macroalgae. Rates of recreational snorkeling varied from low in the southwestern to very high (>1000 snorkelers d-1 in the northeastern sections of the bay. Stony coral cover decreased and macroalgal cover increased significantly with levels of snorkeling, while trends varied among taxa for other organisms such as gorgonians, fire corals, and sea urchins. We conclude that benthic organisms appear to exhibit taxon-specific variation with levels of recreational snorkeling. To prevent further degradation, we recommend limitation of snorkeler visitation rates, coupled with visitor education and in-water guides to reduce reef-damaging behaviors by snorkelers in high-use areas. These types of management activities, integrated with reef monitoring and subsequent readjustment of management, have the potential to reverse the damage potentially inflicted on coral reefs by the expansion of reef-based recreational snorkeling.

  17. Calibration and Assessment of the New Acropora 'Inter-Branch Skeleton' Palaeothermometer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadler, J.; Webb, G. E.; Zhao, J. X.; Nothdurft, L. D.

    2014-12-01

    Coral reefs provide an increasingly important archive of palaeoclimate data that can be used to constrain climate model simulations. Reconstructing past environments may also provide insights into the potential of reef systems to survive changes in the Earth's climate. Geochemically based climate reconstructions are predominately acquired from massive Porites colonies, yet there remain significant spatial and temporal gaps in our understanding of climate evolution where no suitable coralla have been recovered. Branching corals are commonly the dominant species in modern reef facies and their abundance suggests an untapped source for this missing information. The potential of 'inter-branch skeleton' in corymbose Acropora to act as a new palaeoclimate archive is significant. Scanning Electron Microscopy of inter-branch skeleton in Acropora from Heron Reef, southern Great Barrier Reef, reveals a lack of secondary thickening deposits that typically characterize Acropora branches and renders them unsuitable for geochemical archives. Annual density banding, similar to that used for chronological determination of geochemical sampling in massive corals, is also observed within Acropora inter-branch skeleton. Clear seasonal signals in Sr/Ca within the skeletal structure will be correlated against the network of in situ temperature recorders in Heron lagoon and on the southern reef slope to provide a new palaeotemperature transfer equation.

  18. Crowning corals

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Raghukumar, C.

    and the atolls. Reefs all over the world are dwindling fast. The major agents of destruction of coral reefs are abiotic and biotic factors such as hurricanes, bioerosion, sedimentation, eutrophication, pollution, predation and diseases. Pollution by oil spill...

  19. Photogrammetric survey of dinosaur skeletons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Wiedemann

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available To derive physiological data of dinosaurs, it is necessary to determine the volume and the surface area of this animals. For this purpose, a detailed survey of reconstructed skeletons is required. The skeletons of three dinosaurs in the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin and two skeletons in the Museum d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris have been surveyed using stereo photogrammetry. Two of the Berlin skeletons were also surveyed with the close range laser scanners of the Institut für Navigation of the Universität Stuttgart. Both data acquisition techniques require a geodetic control network as a geometric reference system. The surveying methods used, together with results of mathematical approaches for the determination of the volume and surface of the animals are presented in this paper. Zur Herleitung physiologischer Daten der Dinosaurier ist es erforderlich, zunächst Volumen und Oberfläche ihres Körpers zu bestimmen. Dazu wurde eine detaillierte Vermessung rekonstruierter Skelette durchgeführt. Die Skelette dreier Saurier im Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin und zweier im Museum d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris wurden stereophotogrammetrisch vermessen. Bei zwei der Berliner Skelette wurden zusätzlich die Laserscanner des Instituts für Navigation der Universität Stuttgart eingesetzt. Beide Datenerfassungstechniken benötigen ein Paßpunktfeld als geometrisches Referenzsystem. Die verwendeten Vermessungsmethoden, die mathematischen Ansätze für die Berechnung von Volumina und Oberflächen und die Ergebnisse werden in diesem Aufsatz vorgestellt. doi:10.1002/mmng.1999.4860020108

  20. Coral Reef Remote Sensing: Helping Managers Protect Reefs in a Changing Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eakin, C.; Liu, G.; Li, J.; Muller-Karger, F. E.; Heron, S. F.; Gledhill, D. K.; Christensen, T.; Rauenzahn, J.; Morgan, J.; Parker, B. A.; Skirving, W. J.; Nim, C.; Burgess, T.; Strong, A. E.

    2010-12-01

    Climate change and ocean acidification are already having severe impacts on coral reef ecosystems. Warming oceans have caused corals to bleach, or expel their symbiotic algae (zooxanthellae) with alarming frequency and severity and have contributed to a rise in coral infectious diseases. Ocean acidification is reducing the availability of carbonate ions needed by corals and many other marine organisms to build structural components like skeletons and shells and may already be slowing the coral growth. These two impacts are already killing corals and slowing reef growth, reducing biodiversity and the structure needed to provide crucial ecosystem services. NOAA’s Coral Reef Watch (CRW) uses a combination of satellite data, in situ observations, and models to provide coral reef managers, scientists, and others with information needed to monitor threats to coral reefs. The advance notice provided by remote sensing and models allows resource managers to protect corals, coral reefs, and the services they provide, although managers often encounter barriers to implementation of adaptation strategies. This talk will focus on application of NOAA’s satellite and model-based tools that monitor the risk of mass coral bleaching on a global scale, ocean acidification in the Caribbean, and coral disease outbreaks in selected regions, as well as CRW work to train managers in their use, and barriers to taking action to adapt to climate change. As both anthropogenic CO2 and temperatures will continue to rise, local actions to protect reefs are becoming even more important.

  1. Establishing a Functional Link Between African Dust and Region-wide Coral Reef Decline

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, M. L.; Barber, R. T.

    2003-12-01

    For nearly thirty years, coral reefs in the Western Atlantic and Caribbean basin have experienced historically unprecedented declines. Algal blooms, mass coral bleaching, disease outbreaks and shifts in the dominance of benthic coral-competitors were first documented in the 1970s and have increased in frequency, intensity, variety and range over the past two decades. Recent studies of decreasing coral cover document regional losses averaging nearly 80% over this period. Here, we provide experimental evidence that increased supplies of iron-rich eolian dust from Africa to typically iron-poor marine environments throughout the region could have played a key role in these profound changes. Atmospheric inputs of "new" micronutrients, especially iron, have the potential to overcome limitations to the growth of opportunistic coral-competitors and the virulence of coral pathogens. Microcosm and mesocosm experiments with a putative bacterial pathogen of stony corals, Aurantimonas coralicida, and a temperate stony coral, Oculina arbuscula, provide a means to test the functional relationship between iron availability, microbial growth and coral health. Iron limitation of A. coralicida growth rates is readily induced by the addition of synthetic chelators such as 2,2' Dipyridyl to bacterial cultures at relatively low concentrations (e.g. 10 μ M). This growth limitation is reversed by 100 nM over-enrichments of pure reagent-grade iron as well as iron-rich "synthetic dust" derived from African lake-bed sediments. The Chrome-azurol S assay demonstrates that A. coralicida also synthesizes high-affinity iron-capture mechanisms (i.e. siderophores) that may serve as critical determinants of virulence. Finally, our experimental mesocosms are based on oligotrophic Mediterranean seawater and permit controlled experimentation under relatively low iron ( ˜5 nM) conditions. Using this system, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis of PCR-amplified ribosomal DNA

  2. Dongsha Atoll: A potential thermal refuge for reef-building corals in the South China Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tkachenko, Konstantin S; Soong, Keryea

    2017-06-01

    Dongsha Atoll (also known as the Pratas Islands), the northernmost atoll in the South China Sea, experiences two contrasting physical phenomena: repetitive anomalies of the sea surface temperature exceeding the coral bleaching threshold and regular effects of the world's strongest internal waves resulting in the rhythmic upwelling of cold deep waters at the outer reef slopes of the atoll. This unique combination may result in significant differences in coral species composition and structure between the lagoon and forereef. Surveys conducted in August-September 2016 at 12 study sites in the 2-15 m depth range at Dongsha Atoll revealed a clear spatial separation between 'thermally-susceptible' stony coral genera, including Acropora, Pocillopora and Montipora, which mainly inhabited the forereef, and 'thermally-resistant' genera, including massive Porites, foliaceous Echinopora, Pavona and Turbinaria, which mainly resided in the lagoon. The mean coral cover and species richness on the forereef were respectively 1.8 and 1.4 times higher than those in the lagoon (61.3% and 98 species on the forereef vs. 34.2% and 69 species in the lagoon). Coral mortality rates, expressed as the ratio of dead to live stony corals, showed the same pattern (0.4 in the lagoon vs. 0.009 on the forereef). Furthermore, in a laboratory experiment, 'thermally-susceptible' taxa from the lagoon, (e.g. Pocillopora verrucosa and P. damicornis), exhibited higher resistance to bleaching than did their counterparts from the forereef. The present findings indicate that Dongsha Atoll is a potential thermal refuge for reef-building corals in the northern South China Sea and reveal the development of resilience and resistance to bleaching in coral communities of the lagoon. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Mg isotope fractionation in biogenic carbonates of deep-sea coral, benthic foraminifera, and hermatypic coral.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshimura, Toshihiro; Tanimizu, Masaharu; Inoue, Mayuri; Suzuki, Atsushi; Iwasaki, Nozomu; Kawahata, Hodaka

    2011-11-01

    High-precision Mg isotope measurements by multiple collector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry were applied for determinations of magnesium isotopic fractionation of biogenic calcium carbonates from seawater with a rapid Mg purification technique. The mean δ(26)Mg values of scleractinian corals, giant clam, benthic foraminifera, and calcite deep-sea corals were -0.87‰, -2.57‰, -2.34‰, and -2.43‰, suggesting preferential precipitation of light Mg isotopes to produce carbonate skeleton in biomineralization. Mg isotope fractionation in deep-sea coral, which has high Mg calcite skeleton, showed a clear temperature (T) dependence from 2.5 °C to 19.5 °C: 1,000 × ln(α) = -2.63 (±0.076) + 0.0138 (±0.0051) × T(R(2) = 0.82, p isotope fractionation may not be a major controlling factor for high-Mg calcite. The Mg isotope fractionation factors and the slope of temperature dependence from deep-sea corals and benthic foraminifera are similar to that for an inorganically precipitated calcite speleothem. Taking into account element partitioning and the calcification rate of biogenic CaCO(3), the similarity among inorganic minerals, deep-sea corals, and benthic foraminiferas may indicate a strong mineralogical control on Mg isotope fractionation for high-Mg calcite. On the other hand, δ(26)Mg in hermatypic corals composed of aragonite has been comparable with previous data on biogenic aragonite of coral, sclerosponges, and scaphopad, regardless of species differences of samples.

  4. Rayleigh-based, multi-element coral thermometry: A biomineralization approach to developing climate proxies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaetani, G.A.; Cohen, A.L.; Wang, Z.; Crusius, J.

    2011-01-01

    This study presents a new approach to coral thermometry that deconvolves the influence of water temperature on skeleton composition from that of “vital effects”, and has the potential to provide estimates of growth temperatures that are accurate to within a few tenths of a degree Celsius from both tropical and cold-water corals. Our results provide support for a physico-chemical model of coral biomineralization, and imply that Mg2+ substitutes directly for Ca2+ in biogenic aragonite. Recent studies have identified Rayleigh fractionation as an important influence on the elemental composition of coral skeletons. Daily, seasonal and interannual variations in the amount of aragonite precipitated by corals from each “batch” of calcifying fluid can explain why the temperature dependencies of elemental ratios in coral skeleton differ from those of abiogenic aragonites, and are highly variable among individual corals. On the basis of this new insight into the origin of “vital effects” in coral skeleton, we developed a Rayleigh-based, multi-element approach to coral thermometry. Temperature is resolved from the Rayleigh fractionation signal by combining information from multiple element ratios (e.g., Mg/Ca, Sr/Ca, Ba/Ca) to produce a mathematically over-constrained system of Rayleigh equations. Unlike conventional coral thermometers, this approach does not rely on an initial calibration of coral skeletal composition to an instrumental temperature record. Rather, considering coral skeletogenesis as a biologically mediated, physico-chemical process provides a means to extract temperature information from the skeleton composition using the Rayleigh equation and a set of experimentally determined partition coefficients. Because this approach is based on a quantitative understanding of the mechanism that produces the “vital effect” it should be possible to apply it both across scleractinian species and to corals growing in vastly different environments. Where

  5. The Radial Growth Rate of Japanese Precious Corals Using Pb-210 Dating Method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamada, M.; Iwasaki, N.; Suzuki, A.; Aono, T.

    2014-12-01

    Precious corals belong to the subclass Octocorallia of the class Anthozoa. Its major component is calcium carbonate and the crystal structure is high-Mg calcite. Their skeletal axes are used for jewellery, rosary, amulet, etc. They are found mainly in the Japanese coast, the Mediterranean and off the Midway Islands and they are distributed at a depth of 100 m to 1500m. The growing skeletons of precious corals have potential for recording environmental change. Pb-210 is a naturally occurring radionuclide with a half-life of 22.3 years. Pb-210 is a natural sediment marker suitable for dating events that have occurred over the past 100 years and has been used to measure the sedimentation rates of lake and coastal marine sediments. The objectives of this study were to measure the Pb-210 concentration in the skeletons of Japanese red coral, pink coral and white coral and to estimate the radial growth rate using Pb-210 dating method. The radial growth rate of the skeleton can be estimated by the gradual decrease in Pb-210 concentrations measured from the surface inwards. The radial growth rate of the pink coral skeleton (Corallium elatius), collected at depths of 200 to 300 m off the coast of the Ryukyu Islands, Japan, was 0.15 mm/year, so slow that it would take as long as 50 years for a colony to grow to 15 mm in diameter.

  6. Contrasting light spectra constrain the macro and microstructures of scleractinian corals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui J M Rocha

    Full Text Available The morphological plasticity of scleractinian corals can be influenced by numerous factors in their natural environment. However, it is difficult to identify in situ the relative influence of a single biotic or abiotic factor, due to potential interactions between them. Light is considered as a major factor affecting coral skeleton morphology, due to their symbiotic relation with photosynthetic zooxanthellae. Nonetheless, most studies addressing the importance of light on coral morphological plasticity have focused on photosynthetically active radiation (PAR intensity, with the effect of light spectra remaining largely unknown. The present study evaluated how different light spectra affect the skeleton macro- and microstructures in two coral species (Acropora formosa sensu Veron (2000 and Stylophora pistillata maintained under controlled laboratory conditions. We tested the effect of three light treatments with the same PAR but with a distinct spectral emission: 1 T5 fluorescent lamps with blue emission; 2 Light Emitting Diodes (LED with predominantly blue emission; and 3 Light Emitting Plasma (LEP with full spectra emission. To exclude potential bias generated by genetic variability, the experiment was performed with clonal fragments for both species. After 6 months of experiment, it was possible to detect in coral fragments of both species exposed to different light spectra significant differences in morphometry (e.g., distance among corallites, corallite diameter, and theca thickness, as well as in the organization of their skeleton microstructure. The variability found in the skeleton macro- and microstructures of clonal organisms points to the potential pitfalls associated with the exclusive use of morphometry on coral taxonomy. Moreover, the identification of a single factor influencing the morphology of coral skeletons is relevant for coral aquaculture and can allow the optimization of reef restoration efforts.

  7. Contrasting Light Spectra Constrain the Macro and Microstructures of Scleractinian Corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, Rui J. M.; Silva, Ana M. B.; Fernandes, M. Helena Vaz; Cruz, Igor C. S.; Rosa, Rui; Calado, Ricardo

    2014-01-01

    The morphological plasticity of scleractinian corals can be influenced by numerous factors in their natural environment. However, it is difficult to identify in situ the relative influence of a single biotic or abiotic factor, due to potential interactions between them. Light is considered as a major factor affecting coral skeleton morphology, due to their symbiotic relation with photosynthetic zooxanthellae. Nonetheless, most studies addressing the importance of light on coral morphological plasticity have focused on photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) intensity, with the effect of light spectra remaining largely unknown. The present study evaluated how different light spectra affect the skeleton macro- and microstructures in two coral species (Acropora formosa sensu Veron (2000) and Stylophora pistillata) maintained under controlled laboratory conditions. We tested the effect of three light treatments with the same PAR but with a distinct spectral emission: 1) T5 fluorescent lamps with blue emission; 2) Light Emitting Diodes (LED) with predominantly blue emission; and 3) Light Emitting Plasma (LEP) with full spectra emission. To exclude potential bias generated by genetic variability, the experiment was performed with clonal fragments for both species. After 6 months of experiment, it was possible to detect in coral fragments of both species exposed to different light spectra significant differences in morphometry (e.g., distance among corallites, corallite diameter, and theca thickness), as well as in the organization of their skeleton microstructure. The variability found in the skeleton macro- and microstructures of clonal organisms points to the potential pitfalls associated with the exclusive use of morphometry on coral taxonomy. Moreover, the identification of a single factor influencing the morphology of coral skeletons is relevant for coral aquaculture and can allow the optimization of reef restoration efforts. PMID:25170981

  8. Effects of flow and colony morphology on the thermal boundary layer of corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jimenez, Isabel M.; Kühl, Michael; Larkum, Anthony W. D.; Ralph, Peter J.

    2011-01-01

    The thermal microenvironment of corals and the thermal effects of changing flow and radiation are critical to understanding heat-induced coral bleaching, a stress response resulting from the destruction of the symbiosis between corals and their photosynthetic microalgae. Temperature microsensor measurements at the surface of illuminated stony corals with uneven surface topography (Leptastrea purpurea and Platygyra sinensis) revealed millimetre-scale variations in surface temperature and thermal boundary layer (TBL) that may help understand the patchy nature of coral bleaching within single colonies. The effect of water flow on the thermal microenvironment was investigated in hemispherical and branching corals (Porites lobata and Stylophora pistillata, respectively) in a flow chamber experiment. For both coral types, the thickness of the TBL decreased exponentially from 2.5 mm at quasi-stagnant flow (0.3 cm s−1), to 1 mm at 5 cm s−1, with an exponent approximately 0.5 consistent with predictions from the heat transfer theory for simple geometrical objects and typical of laminar boundary layer processes. Measurements of mass transfer across the diffusive boundary layer using O2 microelectrodes revealed a greater exponent for mass transfer when compared with heat transfer, indicating that heat and mass transfer at the surface of corals are not exactly analogous processes. PMID:21602322

  9. Caribbean mesophotic coral ecosystems are unlikely climate change refugia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Tyler B; Gyory, Joanna; Brandt, Marilyn E; Miller, William J; Jossart, Jonathan; Nemeth, Richard S

    2016-08-01

    Deeper coral reefs experience reduced temperatures and light and are often shielded from localized anthropogenic stressors such as pollution and fishing. The deep reef refugia hypothesis posits that light-dependent stony coral species at deeper depths are buffered from thermal stress and will avoid bleaching-related mass mortalities caused by increasing sea surface temperatures under climate change. This hypothesis has not been tested because data collection on deeper coral reefs is difficult. Here we show that deeper (mesophotic) reefs, 30-75 m depth, in the Caribbean are not refugia because they have lower bleaching threshold temperatures than shallow reefs. Over two thermal stress events, mesophotic reef bleaching was driven by a bleaching threshold that declines 0.26 °C every +10 m depth. Thus, the main premise of the deep reef refugia hypothesis that cooler environments are protective is incorrect; any increase in temperatures above the local mean warmest conditions can lead to thermal stress and bleaching. Thus, relatively cooler temperatures can no longer be considered a de facto refugium for corals and it is likely that many deeper coral reefs are as vulnerable to climate change as shallow water reefs. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Reconstructing coral calcification fluid dissolved inorganic carbon chemistry from skeletal boron : an exploration of potential controls on coral aragonite B/Ca

    OpenAIRE

    Allison, Nicola

    2017-01-01

    This work was supported by the UK Natural Environment Research Council (award NE/I022973/1). The boron geochemistry of coral skeletons reflects the dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) chemistry of the calcification fluid from which the skeletons precipitates and may be a valuable tool to investigate the effects of climate change on coral calcification. In this paper I calculate the predicted B/Ca of aragonite precipitating from seawater based fluids as a function of pH, [DIC] and [Ca2+]. I co...

  11. Physiological and Biogeochemical Traits of Bleaching and Recovery in the Mounding Species of Coral Porites lobata: Implications for Resilience in Mounding Corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-02

    was made on whole coral samples (skeleton+animal tissue+endosym- biont) ground with a mortar and pestle and normalized to total ash-free dry tissue...Mueller E, Jaubert J (1996) A compartmental approach to the mechanism of calcification in hermatypic corals. The Journal of Experimental Biology 199: 1029...associated benthic algae in the Northern Red Sea. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 389: 53–60. 83. Naumann MS, Haas A, Struck U, Mayr C, El

  12. The Role of Vibrios in Diseases of Corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munn, Colin B

    2015-08-01

    The tissue, skeleton, and secreted mucus of corals supports a highly dynamic and diverse community of microbes, which play a major role in the health status of corals such as the provision of essential nutrients or the metabolism of waste products. However, members of the Vibrio genus are prominent as causative agents of disease in corals. The aim of this chapter is to review our understanding of the spectrum of disease effects displayed by coral-associated vibrios, with a particular emphasis on the few species where detailed studies of pathogenicity have been conducted. The role of Vibrio shilonii in seasonal bleaching of Oculina patagonica and the development of the coral probiotic hypothesis is reviewed, pointing to unanswered questions about this phenomenon. Detailed consideration is given to studies of V. coralliilyticus and related pathogens and changes in the dominance of vibrios associated with coral bleaching. Other Vibrio-associated disease syndromes discussed include yellow band/blotch disease and tissue necrosis in temperate gorgonian corals. The review includes analysis of the role of enzymes, resistance to oxidative stress, and quorum sensing in virulence of coral-associated vibrios. The review concludes that we should probably regard most-possibly all-vibrios as "opportunistic" pathogens which, under certain environmental conditions, are capable of overwhelming the defense mechanisms of appropriate hosts, leading to rapid growth and tissue destruction.

  13. A clock synchronization skeleton based on RTAI

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huang, Y.; Visser, P.M.; Broenink, Johannes F.

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents a clock synchronization skeleton based on RTAI (Real Time Application Interface). The skeleton is a thin layer that provides unified but extendible interfaces to the underlying operating system, the synchronization algorithms and the upper level applications in need of clock

  14. Erythrocyte membrane skeleton inhibits nanoparticle endocytosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Xinli; Yue, Tongtao; Tian, Falin; Liu, Zhiping; Zhang, Xianren

    2017-06-01

    Red blood cells (RBCs), also called erythrocytes, have been experimentally proposed in recent decades as the biological drug delivery systems through entrapping certain drugs by endocytosis. However, the internalization pathway of endocytosis seems to conflict with the robust mechanical properties of RBCs that is induced by the spectrin-actin network of erythrocyte membrane skeleton. In this work, we employed a minimum realistic model and the dissipative particle dynamics method to investigate the influence of the spectrin-actin membrane skeleton on the internalization of nanoparticles (NPs). Our simulations show that the existence of skeleton meshwork indeed induces an inhibiting effect that effectively prevents NPs from internalization. The inhibiting effect is found to depend on the membrane-NP attraction, skeleton tension and relative size of the NP to the membrane skeleton mesh. However, our simulations also demonstrate that there are two possibilities for successful internalization of NPs in the presence of the membrane skeleton. The first case is for NPs that has a much smaller size than the dimension of skeleton meshes, and the other is that the skeleton tension is rather weak so that the formed vesicle can still move inward for NP internalization.

  15. Fuzzy Object Skeletonization: Theory, Algorithms, and Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    K Saha, Punam; Jin, Dakai; Liu, Yinxiao; E Christensen, Gary; Chen, Cheng

    2017-08-10

    Skeletonization offers a compact representation of an object while preserving important topological and geometrical features. Literature on skeletonization of binary objects is quite mature. However, challenges involved with skeletonization of fuzzy objects are mostly unanswered. This paper presents a new theory and algorithm of skeletonization for fuzzy objects, evaluates its performance, and demonstrates its applications. A formulation of fuzzy grassfire propagation is introduced; its relationships with fuzzy distance functions, level sets, and geodesics are discussed; and new results are presented. A notion of collision-impact of fire-fronts at skeletal points is introduced, and its role in filtering noisy skeletal points is demonstrated. A fuzzy object skeletonization algorithm is developed using new ideas of surface- and curve-skeletal voxels, digital collision-impact, and continuity of skeletal surfaces. A skeletal noise pruning algorithm is presented using branch-level significance. Accuracy and robustness of the new algorithm are examined on computer-generated phantoms and micro- and conventional CT imaging of trabecular bone specimens. An application of fuzzy object skeletonization to compute structure-width at a low image resolution is demonstrated, and its ability to predict bone strength is examined. Finally, the performance of the new fuzzy object skeletonization algorithm is compared with two binary object skeletonization methods.

  16. Habitat associations of juvenile fish at Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia: the importance of coral and algae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Shaun K; Depczynski, Martial; Fisher, Rebecca; Holmes, Thomas H; O'Leary, Rebecca A; Tinkler, Paul

    2010-12-07

    Habitat specificity plays a pivotal role in forming community patterns in coral reef fishes, yet considerable uncertainty remains as to the extent of this selectivity, particularly among newly settled recruits. Here we quantified habitat specificity of juvenile coral reef fish at three ecological levels; algal meadows vs. coral reefs, live vs. dead coral and among different coral morphologies. In total, 6979 individuals from 11 families and 56 species were censused along Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia. Juvenile fishes exhibited divergence in habitat use and specialization among species and at all study scales. Despite the close proximity of coral reef and algal meadows (10's of metres) 25 species were unique to coral reef habitats, and seven to algal meadows. Of the seven unique to algal meadows, several species are known to occupy coral reef habitat as adults, suggesting possible ontogenetic shifts in habitat use. Selectivity between live and dead coral was found to be species-specific. In particular, juvenile scarids were found predominantly on the skeletons of dead coral whereas many damsel and butterfly fishes were closely associated with live coral habitat. Among the coral dependent species, coral morphology played a key role in juvenile distribution. Corymbose corals supported a disproportionate number of coral species and individuals relative to their availability, whereas less complex shapes (i.e. massive & encrusting) were rarely used by juvenile fish. Habitat specialisation by juvenile species of ecological and fisheries importance, for a variety of habitat types, argues strongly for the careful conservation and management of multiple habitat types within marine parks, and indicates that the current emphasis on planning conservation using representative habitat areas is warranted. Furthermore, the close association of many juvenile fish with corals susceptible to climate change related disturbances suggests that identifying and protecting reefs

  17. Habitat associations of juvenile fish at Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia: the importance of coral and algae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaun K Wilson

    Full Text Available Habitat specificity plays a pivotal role in forming community patterns in coral reef fishes, yet considerable uncertainty remains as to the extent of this selectivity, particularly among newly settled recruits. Here we quantified habitat specificity of juvenile coral reef fish at three ecological levels; algal meadows vs. coral reefs, live vs. dead coral and among different coral morphologies. In total, 6979 individuals from 11 families and 56 species were censused along Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia. Juvenile fishes exhibited divergence in habitat use and specialization among species and at all study scales. Despite the close proximity of coral reef and algal meadows (10's of metres 25 species were unique to coral reef habitats, and seven to algal meadows. Of the seven unique to algal meadows, several species are known to occupy coral reef habitat as adults, suggesting possible ontogenetic shifts in habitat use. Selectivity between live and dead coral was found to be species-specific. In particular, juvenile scarids were found predominantly on the skeletons of dead coral whereas many damsel and butterfly fishes were closely associated with live coral habitat. Among the coral dependent species, coral morphology played a key role in juvenile distribution. Corymbose corals supported a disproportionate number of coral species and individuals relative to their availability, whereas less complex shapes (i.e. massive & encrusting were rarely used by juvenile fish. Habitat specialisation by juvenile species of ecological and fisheries importance, for a variety of habitat types, argues strongly for the careful conservation and management of multiple habitat types within marine parks, and indicates that the current emphasis on planning conservation using representative habitat areas is warranted. Furthermore, the close association of many juvenile fish with corals susceptible to climate change related disturbances suggests that identifying and

  18. A snapshot of a coral "holobiont": a transcriptome assembly of the scleractinian coral, porites, captures a wide variety of genes from both the host and symbiotic zooxanthellae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuya Shinzato

    Full Text Available Massive scleractinian corals of the genus Porites are important reef builders in the Indo-Pacific, and they are more resistant to thermal stress than other stony corals, such as the genus Acropora. Because coral health and survival largely depend on the interaction between a coral host and its symbionts, it is important to understand the molecular interactions of an entire "coral holobiont". We simultaneously sequenced transcriptomes of Porites australiensis and its symbionts using the Illumina Hiseq2000 platform. We obtained 14.3 Gbp of sequencing data and assembled it into 74,997 contigs (average: 1,263 bp, N50 size: 2,037 bp. We successfully distinguished contigs originating from the host (Porites and the symbiont (Symbiodinium by aligning nucleotide sequences with the decoded Acropora digitifera and Symbiodinium minutum genomes. In contrast to previous coral transcriptome studies, at least 35% of the sequences were found to have originated from the symbionts, indicating that it is possible to analyze both host and symbiont transcriptomes simultaneously. Conserved protein domain and KEGG analyses showed that the dataset contains broad gene repertoires of both Porites and Symbiodinium. Effective utilization of sequence reads revealed that the polymorphism rate in P. australiensis is 1.0% and identified the major symbiotic Symbiodinium as Type C15. Analyses of amino acid biosynthetic pathways suggested that this Porites holobiont is probably able to synthesize most of the common amino acids and that Symbiodinium is potentially able to provide essential amino acids to its host. We believe this to be the first molecular evidence of complementarity in amino acid metabolism between coral hosts and their symbionts. We successfully assembled genes originating from both the host coral and the symbiotic Symbiodinium to create a snapshot of the coral holobiont transcriptome. This dataset will facilitate a deeper understanding of molecular mechanisms of

  19. Acute tissue death (white syndrome) affects the microenvironment of tabular Acropora corals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Sandra Breum; Vestergaard, Maj; Ainsworth, Tracy D.

    2010-01-01

    White syndrome (WS) is a collective term for coral diseases that cause acute tissue loss, resulting in apparently healthy tissue bordering on exposed skeleton. In this study, the microenvironmental condition and tissue structure of WS-affected tabular acroporid corals were assessed by O2...... microelectrodes and histological techniques. The high spatial resolution of the microelectrode measurements enabled an evaluation of the extent of physiological changes at, and 2 cm away from, the WS border. Respiration of the coral host was decreased on the skeleton-tissue border but was comparable...... to that of healthy corals only 2 cm away from the border. Histological data, however, showed a decrease in mesogloea thickness on and 2 cm away from the WS border, which correlates with a previously observed allocation of photoassimilates away from the WS border. We suggest that there are colony-wide negative...

  20. Bicarbonate transporters in corals point towards a key step in the evolution of cnidarian calcification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zoccola, Didier; Ganot, Philippe; Bertucci, Anthony; Caminiti-Segonds, Natacha; Techer, Nathalie; Voolstra, Christian R; Aranda, Manuel; Tambutté, Eric; Allemand, Denis; Casey, Joseph R; Tambutté, Sylvie

    2015-06-04

    The bicarbonate ion (HCO3(-)) is involved in two major physiological processes in corals, biomineralization and photosynthesis, yet no molecular data on bicarbonate transporters are available. Here, we characterized plasma membrane-type HCO3(-) transporters in the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata. Eight solute carrier (SLC) genes were found in the genome: five homologs of mammalian-type SLC4 family members, and three of mammalian-type SLC26 family members. Using relative expression analysis and immunostaining, we analyzed the cellular distribution of these transporters and conducted phylogenetic analyses to determine the extent of conservation among cnidarian model organisms. Our data suggest that the SLC4γ isoform is specific to scleractinian corals and responsible for supplying HCO3(-) to the site of calcification. Taken together, SLC4γ appears to be one of the key genes for skeleton building in corals, which bears profound implications for our understanding of coral biomineralization and the evolution of scleractinian corals within cnidarians.

  1. A new conceptual model of coral biomineralisation: hypoxia as the physiological driver of skeletal extension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wooldridge, S.

    2013-05-01

    That corals skeletons are built of aragonite crystals with taxonomy-linked ultrastructure has been well understood since the 19th century. Yet, the way by which corals control this crystallization process remains an unsolved question. Here, I outline a new conceptual model of coral biomineralisation that endeavours to relate known skeletal features with homeostatic functions beyond traditional growth (structural) determinants. In particular, I propose that the dominant physiological driver of skeletal extension is night-time hypoxia, which is exacerbated by the respiratory oxygen demands of the coral's algal symbionts (= zooxanthellae). The model thus provides a new narrative to explain the high growth rate of symbiotic corals, by equating skeletal deposition with the "work-rate" of the coral host needed to maintain a stable and beneficial symbiosis. In this way, coral skeletons are interpreted as a continuous (long-run) recording unit of the stability and functioning of the coral-algae endosymbiosis. After providing supportive evidence for the model across multiple scales of observation, I use coral core data from the Great Barrier Reef (Australia) to highlight the disturbed nature of the symbiosis in recent decades, but suggest that its onset is consistent with a trajectory that has been followed since at least the start of the 1900s. In concluding, I outline how the proposed capacity of cnidarians (which includes modern reef corals) to overcome the metabolic limitation of hypoxia via skeletogenesis also provides a new hypothesis to explain the sudden appearance in the fossil record of calcified skeletons at the Precambrian-Cambrian transition - and the ensuing rapid appearance of most major animal phyla.

  2. Biology of corals and coral reefs

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Rajkumar, R.; Parulekar, A.H.

    on the systematic position is presented. The general structure is depicted with illustrations. Physiology part is updated to current knowledge on reproduction, nutrition and excretion of corals. The coral reefs section begins with status of world reefs...

  3. Fine-Scale Skeletal Banding Can Distinguish Symbiotic from Asymbiotic Species among Modern and Fossil Scleractinian Corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frankowiak, Katarzyna; Kret, Sławomir; Mazur, Maciej; Meibom, Anders; Kitahara, Marcelo V; Stolarski, Jarosław

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of scleractinian corals on geological timescales is key to predict how modern reef ecosystems will react to changing environmental conditions in the future. Important to such efforts has been the development of several skeleton-based criteria to distinguish between the two major ecological groups of scleractinians: zooxanthellates, which live in symbiosis with dinoflagellate algae, and azooxanthellates, which lack endosymbiotic dinoflagellates. Existing criteria are based on overall skeletal morphology and bio/geo-chemical indicators-none of them being particularly robust. Here we explore another skeletal feature, namely fine-scale growth banding, which differs between these two groups of corals. Using various ultra-structural imaging techniques (e.g., TEM, SEM, and NanoSIMS) we have characterized skeletal growth increments, composed of doublets of optically light and dark bands, in a broad selection of extant symbiotic and asymbiotic corals. Skeletons of zooxanthellate corals are characterized by regular growth banding, whereas in skeletons of azooxanthellate corals the growth banding is irregular. Importantly, the regularity of growth bands can be easily quantified with a coefficient of variation obtained by measuring bandwidths on SEM images of polished and etched skeletal surfaces of septa and/or walls. We find that this coefficient of variation (lower values indicate higher regularity) ranges from ~40 to ~90% in azooxanthellate corals and from ~5 to ~15% in symbiotic species. With more than 90% (28 out of 31) of the studied corals conforming to this microstructural criterion, it represents an easy and robust method to discriminate between zooxanthellate and azooxanthellate corals. This microstructural criterion has been applied to the exceptionally preserved skeleton of the Triassic (Norian, ca. 215 Ma) scleractinian Volzeia sp., which contains the first example of regular, fine-scale banding of thickening deposits in a fossil coral

  4. Metal distribution in coral reef complex Cayo Arcas in the Gulf of Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cram, Silke; Ponce de León, Claudia A; Sommer, Irene; Miceli, Susi; Fernández, Pilar; Rivas, Hilda; Galicia, Leopoldo

    2009-04-01

    This study evaluated the spatial and temporal distribution of metals in the coral reef system Cayos Arcas and Triangulos in the Campeche Bank region, off the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico. No information has been generated before for the incorporation of natural and non-natural occurring metals, some of which are possibly endowed by the oil marine station Cayo Arcas. The multivariate exploratory study of the metals on the coral skeletons, showed the formation of two distinct groups. The metals that have the highest influence on the differentiation of the groups are the metals that are natural constituents of the coral skeletons, in particular Sr can explain much of the differences between the groups, and to a much lesser extent are the metals that could be indicators of pollution. This differentiation suggests that, in our case, the environment around the corals has a higher impact than the non-naturally occurring metals (and possible indicators of pollution). The two groups formed corresponded to: the coral cores influenced by open sea variables and the coral cores in the inner part of the keys which is less exposed to open sea variables. A chronological study was made to two samples that had the longest coral section and were situated in two clearly distinctive zones: an exposed surface subjected to high wave forces and another that was less exposed. Ni and Zn show an accumulation trend in both coral samples, while Ba showed an increase in incorporation around 1980 when the Cayo Arcas oil marine station was constructed.

  5. [Simulation of UV spectra from the wake of a stony meteor in the upper atmosphere].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Da-wei; Chen, Bo

    2005-11-01

    For stony meteors thrusting through a region with an altitude between 100-90 km in the upper atmosphere at different initial geocentric velocities, the effective temperatures are calculated based on Sparrow's particle-collision theory. Assuming different mixture ratios, particle number densities of certain dominant components that might exist in the wake of a stony meteor at a velocity of 72 km x s(-1) are given. Using a large-scale spectral synthesis code called Cloudy, UV radiation within the 240-400 nm band of the wake of such a meteor is simulated, and relative intensities of several expected strong emission lines are predicted. Comparison shows that our prediction of the spectrum of a meteor wake, which has an effective temperature of 5 680 K and a fractional vapor pressure of 0.1 Pa, is fairly close to the observational results.

  6. A Faster Algorithm for Computing Straight Skeletons

    KAUST Repository

    Cheng, Siu-Wing

    2014-09-01

    We present a new algorithm for computing the straight skeleton of a polygon. For a polygon with n vertices, among which r are reflex vertices, we give a deterministic algorithm that reduces the straight skeleton computation to a motorcycle graph computation in O(n (logn)logr) time. It improves on the previously best known algorithm for this reduction, which is randomized, and runs in expected O(n√h+1log2n) time for a polygon with h holes. Using known motorcycle graph algorithms, our result yields improved time bounds for computing straight skeletons. In particular, we can compute the straight skeleton of a non-degenerate polygon in O(n (logn) logr + r 4/3 + ε ) time for any ε > 0. On degenerate input, our time bound increases to O(n (logn) logr + r 17/11 + ε ).

  7. A Faster Algorithm for Computing Straight Skeletons

    KAUST Repository

    Mencel, Liam A.

    2014-05-06

    We present a new algorithm for computing the straight skeleton of a polygon. For a polygon with n vertices, among which r are reflex vertices, we give a deterministic algorithm that reduces the straight skeleton computation to a motorcycle graph computation in O(n (log n) log r) time. It improves on the previously best known algorithm for this reduction, which is randomised, and runs in expected O(n √(h+1) log² n) time for a polygon with h holes. Using known motorcycle graph algorithms, our result yields improved time bounds for computing straight skeletons. In particular, we can compute the straight skeleton of a non-degenerate polygon in O(n (log n) log r + r^(4/3 + ε)) time for any ε > 0. On degenerate input, our time bound increases to O(n (log n) log r + r^(17/11 + ε))

  8. Influence of Stony Rocks Additives on Strengthening of Aluminosilicate Ceramics from Fusible Clays

    OpenAIRE

    Govorova, L.P.; Vakalova, T.V.; Shvagrukova, E.V.; Zagaynova, L.A.

    2015-01-01

    The paper presents the results of the research, connected with the granulometric and mineralogical compositions of fusible clay raw materials of Krasnoyarsk region - argillic and loose clay varieties. The influence of granitoid and diabase rocks stony additives on the sinterability and strength characteristics of the ceramic materials based on fusible clays is evaluated. It is found that the introduction of sintering additives into the loose fusible clay leads to the significant increase of s...

  9. Focus on: University Hospital & Health Sciences Center SUNY at Stony Brook Biomedical Engineering Department.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyro, J F

    1993-01-01

    Clinical Engineering is practiced within the Biomedical Engineering Department (BME) at University Hospital, a modern, 536-bed, tertiary care teaching hospital. The 30-member department delivers a full range of clinical engineering services within the Stony Brook academic medical center. Major clinical engineering advances have been made in the areas of technology management, productivity and cost effectiveness, medical device safety, education, and research. University Hospital provides care for 2.5 million people in Suffolk County and other parts of Long Island.

  10. Erosion on very stony forest soil during phenomenal rain in Webster County, West Virginia

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. H. Patric; W. E., Jr. Kidd

    1982-01-01

    On July 15 and 16, 1979, at least 6 inches of rain fell in central West Virginia during 3 hours, a storm of return period longer than 1,000 years. More than 6 miles of logging roads were examined for evidences of soil erosion and sediment delivery to streams. Erosion was negligible on very stony soils where (a) logging roads were litter covered, (b) road grades were...

  11. Coral-associated viral communities show high levels of diversity and host auxiliary functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen D. Weynberg

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Stony corals (Scleractinia are marine invertebrates that form the foundation and framework upon which tropical reefs are built. The coral animal associates with a diverse microbiome comprised of dinoflagellate algae and other protists, bacteria, archaea, fungi and viruses. Using a metagenomics approach, we analysed the DNA and RNA viral assemblages of seven coral species from the central Great Barrier Reef (GBR, demonstrating that tailed bacteriophages of the Caudovirales dominate across all species examined, and ssDNA viruses, notably the Microviridae, are also prevalent. Most sequences with matches to eukaryotic viruses were assigned to six viral families, including four Nucleocytoplasmic Large DNA Viruses (NCLDVs families: Iridoviridae, Phycodnaviridae, Mimiviridae, and Poxviridae, as well as Retroviridae and Polydnaviridae. Contrary to previous findings, Herpesvirales were rare in these GBR corals. Sequences of a ssRNA virus with similarities to the dinornavirus, Heterocapsa circularisquama ssRNA virus of the Alvernaviridae that infects free-living dinoflagellates, were observed in three coral species. We also detected viruses previously undescribed from the coral holobiont, including a virus that targets fungi associated with the coral species Acropora tenuis. Functional analysis of the assembled contigs indicated a high prevalence of latency-associated genes in the coral-associated viral assemblages, several host-derived auxiliary metabolic genes (AMGs for photosynthesis (psbA, psbD genes encoding the photosystem II D1 and D2 proteins respectively, as well as potential nematocyst toxins and antioxidants (genes encoding green fluorescent-like chromoprotein. This study expands the currently limited knowledge on coral-associated viruses by characterising viral composition and function across seven GBR coral species.

  12. Coral-associated viral communities show high levels of diversity and host auxiliary functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weynberg, Karen D; Laffy, Patrick W; Wood-Charlson, Elisha M; Turaev, Dmitrij; Rattei, Thomas; Webster, Nicole S; van Oppen, Madeleine J H

    2017-01-01

    Stony corals (Scleractinia) are marine invertebrates that form the foundation and framework upon which tropical reefs are built. The coral animal associates with a diverse microbiome comprised of dinoflagellate algae and other protists, bacteria, archaea, fungi and viruses. Using a metagenomics approach, we analysed the DNA and RNA viral assemblages of seven coral species from the central Great Barrier Reef (GBR), demonstrating that tailed bacteriophages of the Caudovirales dominate across all species examined, and ssDNA viruses, notably the Microviridae, are also prevalent. Most sequences with matches to eukaryotic viruses were assigned to six viral families, including four Nucleocytoplasmic Large DNA Viruses (NCLDVs) families: Iridoviridae, Phycodnaviridae, Mimiviridae, and Poxviridae, as well as Retroviridae and Polydnaviridae. Contrary to previous findings, Herpesvirales were rare in these GBR corals. Sequences of a ssRNA virus with similarities to the dinornavirus, Heterocapsa circularisquama ssRNA virus of the Alvernaviridae that infects free-living dinoflagellates, were observed in three coral species. We also detected viruses previously undescribed from the coral holobiont, including a virus that targets fungi associated with the coral species Acropora tenuis. Functional analysis of the assembled contigs indicated a high prevalence of latency-associated genes in the coral-associated viral assemblages, several host-derived auxiliary metabolic genes (AMGs) for photosynthesis (psbA, psbD genes encoding the photosystem II D1 and D2 proteins respectively), as well as potential nematocyst toxins and antioxidants (genes encoding green fluorescent-like chromoprotein). This study expands the currently limited knowledge on coral-associated viruses by characterising viral composition and function across seven GBR coral species.

  13. Comparative analysis of the genomes of Stylophora pistillata and Acropora digitifera provides evidence for extensive differences between species of corals

    KAUST Repository

    Voolstra, Christian R.

    2017-12-08

    Stony corals form the foundation of coral reef ecosystems. Their phylogeny is characterized by a deep evolutionary divergence that separates corals into a robust and complex clade dating back to at least 245 mya. However, the genomic consequences and clade-specific evolution remain unexplored. In this study we have produced the genome of a robust coral, Stylophora pistillata, and compared it to the available genome of a complex coral, Acropora digitifera. We conducted a fine-scale gene-based analysis focusing on ortholog groups. Among the core set of conserved proteins, we found an emphasis on processes related to the cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbiosis. Genes associated with the algal symbiosis were also independently expanded in both species, but both corals diverged on the identity of ortholog groups expanded, and we found uneven expansions in genes associated with innate immunity and stress response. Our analyses demonstrate that coral genomes can be surprisingly disparate. Future analyses incorporating more genomic data should be able to determine whether the patterns elucidated here are not only characteristic of the differences between S. pistillata and A. digitifera but also representative of corals from the robust and complex clade at large.

  14. A new conceptual model of coral biomineralisation: hypoxia as the physiological driver of skeletal extension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Wooldridge

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available That corals skeletons are built of aragonite crystals with taxonomy-linked ultrastructure has been well understood since the 19th century. Yet, the way by which corals control this crystallization process remains an unsolved question. Here, I outline a new conceptual model of coral biomineralisation that endeavours to relate known skeletal features with homeostatic functions beyond traditional growth (structural determinants. In particular, I propose that the dominant physiological driver of skeletal extension is night-time hypoxia, which is exacerbated by the respiratory oxygen demands of the coral's algal symbionts (= zooxanthellae. The model thus provides a new narrative to explain the high growth rate of symbiotic corals, by equating skeletal deposition with the "work-rate" of the coral host needed to maintain a stable and beneficial symbiosis. In this way, coral skeletons are interpreted as a continuous (long-run recording unit of the stability and functioning of the coral–algae endosymbiosis. After providing supportive evidence for the model across multiple scales of observation, I use coral core data from the Great Barrier Reef (Australia to highlight the disturbed nature of the symbiosis in recent decades, but suggest that its onset is consistent with a trajectory that has been followed since at least the start of the 1900s. In concluding, I outline how the proposed capacity of cnidarians (which includes modern reef corals to overcome the metabolic limitation of hypoxia via skeletogenesis also provides a new hypothesis to explain the sudden appearance in the fossil record of calcified skeletons at the Precambrian–Cambrian transition – and the ensuing rapid appearance of most major animal phyla.

  15. Spatial and species variations in bacterial communities associated with corals from the Red Sea as revealed by pyrosequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, On On; Yang, Jiangke; Bougouffa, Salim; Wang, Yong; Batang, Zenon; Tian, Renmao; Al-Suwailem, Abdulaziz; Qian, Pei-Yuan

    2012-10-01

    Microbial associations with corals are common and are most likely symbiotic, although their diversity and relationships with environmental factors and host species remain unclear. In this study, we adopted a 16S rRNA gene tag-pyrosequencing technique to investigate the bacterial communities associated with three stony Scleractinea and two soft Octocorallia corals from three locations in the Red Sea. Our results revealed highly diverse bacterial communities in the Red Sea corals, with more than 600 ribotypes detected and up to 1,000 species estimated from a single coral species. Altogether, 21 bacterial phyla were recovered from the corals, of which Gammaproteobacteria was the most dominant group, and Chloroflexi, Chlamydiae, and the candidate phylum WS3 were reported in corals for the first time. The associated bacterial communities varied greatly with location, where environmental conditions differed significantly. Corals from disturbed areas appeared to share more similar bacterial communities, but larger variations in community structures were observed between different coral species from pristine waters. Ordination methods identified salinity and depth as the most influential parameters affecting the abundance of Vibrio, Pseudoalteromonas, Serratia, Stenotrophomonas, Pseudomonas, and Achromobacter in the corals. On the other hand, bacteria such as Chloracidobacterium and Endozoicomonas were more sensitive to the coral species, suggesting that the host species type may be influential in the associated bacterial community, as well. The combined influences of the coral host and environmental factors on the associated microbial communities are discussed. This study represents the first comparative study using tag-pyrosequencing technology to investigate the bacterial communities in Red Sea corals.

  16. Spatial and Species Variations in Bacterial Communities Associated with Corals from the Red Sea as Revealed by Pyrosequencing

    KAUST Repository

    Lee, O. O.

    2012-08-03

    Microbial associations with corals are common and are most likely symbiotic, although their diversity and relationships with environmental factors and host species remain unclear. In this study, we adopted a 16S rRNA gene tag-pyrosequencing technique to investigate the bacterial communities associated with three stony Scleractinea and two soft Octocorallia corals from three locations in the Red Sea. Our results revealed highly diverse bacterial communities in the Red Sea corals, with more than 600 ribotypes detected and up to 1,000 species estimated from a single coral species. Altogether, 21 bacterial phyla were recovered from the corals, of which Gammaproteobacteria was the most dominant group, and Chloroflexi, Chlamydiae, and the candidate phylum WS3 were reported in corals for the first time. The associated bacterial communities varied greatly with location, where environmental conditions differed significantly. Corals from disturbed areas appeared to share more similar bacterial communities, but larger variations in community structures were observed between different coral species from pristine waters. Ordination methods identified salinity and depth as the most influential parameters affecting the abundance of Vibrio, Pseudoalteromonas, Serratia, Stenotrophomonas, Pseudomonas, and Achromobacter in the corals. On the other hand, bacteria such as Chloracidobacterium and Endozoicomonas were more sensitive to the coral species, suggesting that the host species type may be influential in the associated bacterial community, as well. The combined influences of the coral host and environmental factors on the associated microbial communities are discussed. This study represents the first comparative study using tag-pyrosequencing technology to investigate the bacterial communities in Red Sea corals.

  17. Vertical variations of coral reef drag forces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asher, Shai; Niewerth, Stephan; Koll, Katinka; Shavit, Uri; LWI Collaboration; Technion Collaboration

    2017-11-01

    Corals rely on water flow for the supply of nutrients, particles and energy. Therefore, modeling of processes that take place inside the reef, such as respiration and photosynthesis, relies on models that describe the flow and concentration fields. Due to the high spatial heterogeneity of branched coral reefs, depth average models are usually applied. Such an average approach is insufficient when the flow spatial variation inside the reef is of interest. We report on measurements of vertical variations of drag force that are needed for developing 3D flow models. Coral skeletons were densely arranged along a laboratory flume. Two corals were CT-scanned and replaced with horizontally sliced 3D printed replicates. Drag profiles were measured by connecting the slices to costume drag sensors and velocity profiles were measured using a LDV. The measured drag of whole colonies was in excellent agreement with previous studies; however, these studies never showed how drag varies inside the reef. In addition, these distributions of drag force showed an excellent agreement with momentum balance calculations. Based on the results, we propose a new drag model that includes the dispersive stresses, and consequently displays reduced vertical variations of the drag coefficient.

  18. Exposure to elevated sea-surface temperatures below the bleaching threshold impairs coral recovery and regeneration following injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonesso, Joshua Louis; Leggat, William; Ainsworth, Tracy Danielle

    2017-01-01

    Elevated sea surface temperatures (SSTs) are linked to an increase in the frequency and severity of bleaching events due to temperatures exceeding corals' upper thermal limits. The temperatures at which a breakdown of the coral-Symbiodinium endosymbiosis (coral bleaching) occurs are referred to as the upper thermal limits for the coral species. This breakdown of the endosymbiosis results in a reduction of corals' nutritional uptake, growth, and tissue integrity. Periods of elevated sea surface temperature, thermal stress and coral bleaching are also linked to increased disease susceptibility and an increased frequency of storms which cause injury and physical damage to corals. Herein we aimed to determine the capacity of corals to regenerate and recover from injuries (removal of apical tips) sustained during periods of elevated sea surface temperatures which result in coral stress responses, but which do not result in coral bleaching (i.e., sub-bleaching thermal stress events). In this study, exposure of the species Acropora aspera to an elevated SST of 32 °C (2 °C below the bleaching threshold, 34 °C) was found to result in reduced fluorescence of green fluorescent protein (GFP), reduced skeletal calcification and a lack of branch regrowth at the site of injury, compared to corals maintained under ambient SST conditions (26 °C). Corals maintained under normal, ambient, sea surface temperatures expressed high GFP fluorescence at the injury site, underwent a rapid regeneration of the coral branch apical tip within 12 days of sustaining injury, and showed extensive regrowth of the coral skeleton. Taken together, our results have demonstrated that periods of sustained increased sea surface temperatures, below the corals' bleaching threshold but above long-term summertime averages, impair coral recovery from damage, regardless of the onset or occurrence of coral bleaching.

  19. Bacterial communities associated with healthy and Acropora white syndrome-affected corals from American Samoa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Bryan; Aeby, Greta S.; Work, Thierry M.; Bourne, David G.

    2012-01-01

    Acropora white syndrome (AWS) is characterized by rapid tissue loss revealing the white underlying skeleton and affects corals worldwide; however, reports of causal agents are conflicting. Samples were collected from healthy and diseased corals and seawater around American Samoa and bacteria associated with AWS characterized using both culture-dependent and culture-independent methods, from coral mucus and tissue slurries, respectively. Bacterial 16S rRNA gene clone libraries derived from coral tissue were dominated by the Gammaproteobacteria, and Jaccard's distances calculated between the clone libraries showed that those from diseased corals were more similar to each other than to those from healthy corals. 16S rRNA genes from 78 culturable coral mucus isolates also revealed a distinct partitioning of bacterial genera into healthy and diseased corals. Isolates identified as Vibrionaceae were further characterized by multilocus sequence typing, revealing that whilst several Vibrio spp. were found to be associated with AWS lesions, a recently described species, Vibrio owensii, was prevalent amongst cultured Vibrio isolates. Unaffected tissues from corals with AWS had a different microbiota than normal Acropora as found by others. Determining whether a microbial shift occurs prior to disease outbreaks will be a useful avenue of pursuit and could be helpful in detecting prodromal signs of coral disease prior to manifestation of lesions.

  20. Structure and temporal dynamics of the bacterial communities associated to microhabitats of the coral Oculina patagonica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubio-Portillo, Esther; Santos, Fernando; Martínez-García, Manuel; de Los Ríos, Asunción; Ascaso, Carmen; Souza-Egipsy, Virginia; Ramos-Esplá, Alfonso A; Anton, Josefa

    2016-12-01

    Corals are known to contain a diverse microbiota that plays a paramount role in the physiology and health of holobiont. However, few studies have addressed the variability of bacterial communities within the coral host. In this study, bacterial community composition from the mucus, tissue and skeleton of the scleractinian coral Oculina patagonica were investigated seasonally at two locations in the Western Mediterranean Sea, to further understand how environmental conditions and the coral microbiome structure are related. We used denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis in combination with next-generation sequencing and electron microscopy to characterize the bacterial community. The bacterial communities were significantly different among coral compartments, and coral tissue displayed the greatest changes related to environmental conditions and coral health status. Species belonging to the Rhodobacteraceae and Vibrionaceae families form part of O. patagonica tissues core microbiome and may play significant roles in the nitrogen cycle. Furthermore, sequences related to the coral pathogens, Vibrio mediterranei and Vibrio coralliilyticus, were detected not only in bleached corals but also in healthy ones, even during cold months. This fact opens a new view onto unveiling the role of pathogens in the development of coral diseases in the future. © 2016 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. The dynamics of architectural complexity on coral reefs under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozec, Yves-Marie; Alvarez-Filip, Lorenzo; Mumby, Peter J

    2015-01-01

    One striking feature of coral reef ecosystems is the complex benthic architecture which supports diverse and abundant fauna, particularly of reef fish. Reef-building corals are in decline worldwide, with a corresponding loss of live coral cover resulting in a loss of architectural complexity. Understanding the dynamics of the reef architecture is therefore important to envision the ability of corals to maintain functional habitats in an era of climate change. Here, we develop a mechanistic model of reef topographical complexity for contemporary Caribbean reefs. The model describes the dynamics of corals and other benthic taxa under climate-driven disturbances (hurricanes and coral bleaching). Corals have a simplified shape with explicit diameter and height, allowing species-specific calculation of their colony surface and volume. Growth and the mechanical (hurricanes) and biological erosion (parrotfish) of carbonate skeletons are important in driving the pace of extension/reduction in the upper reef surface, the net outcome being quantified by a simple surface roughness index (reef rugosity). The model accurately simulated the decadal changes of coral cover observed in Cozumel (Mexico) between 1984 and 2008, and provided a realistic hindcast of coral colony-scale (1-10 m) changing rugosity over the same period. We then projected future changes of Caribbean reef rugosity in response to global warming. Under severe and frequent thermal stress, the model predicted a dramatic loss of rugosity over the next two or three decades. Critically, reefs with managed parrotfish populations were able to delay the general loss of architectural complexity, as the benefits of grazing in maintaining living coral outweighed the bioerosion of dead coral skeletons. Overall, this model provides the first explicit projections of reef rugosity in a warming climate, and highlights the need of combining local (protecting and restoring high grazing) to global (mitigation of greenhouse gas

  2. Collection methods and descriptions of coral cores extracted from massive corals in Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinzierl, Michael S.; Reich, Christopher D.; Hickey, T. Donald; Bartlett, Lucy A.; Kuffner, Ilsa B.

    2016-11-29

    Cores from living coral colonies were collected from Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida, U.S.A., to obtain skeletal records of past coral growth and allow geochemical reconstruction of environmental variables during the corals’ centuries-long lifespans. The samples were collected as part of the U.S. Geological Survey Coral Reef Ecosystems Studies project (http:/coastal.er.usgs.gov/crest) that provides science to assist resource managers tasked with the stewardship of coral reef resources. Three colonies each of the coral species Orbicella faveolata and Siderastrea siderea were collected in May 2012 using the methods described herein and as approved under National Park Service scientific collecting permit number DRTO-2012-SCI-0001 and are cataloged under accession number DRTO-353. These coral samples can be used to retroactively construct environmental parameters, including sea-surface temperature, by measuring the elemental composition of the coral skeleton. The cores described here, and others (see http://olga.er.usgs.gov/coreviewer/), can be requested, on loan, for scientific study. Photographic images for each coral in its ocean environment, the coral cores as curated and slabbed, and the X-rays of the slabs can be found in an associated U.S. Geological Survey Data Release.

  3. Histology of the heterostracan dermal skeleton: Insight into the origin of the vertebrate mineralised skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marquart, Chloe L.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Living vertebrates are divided into those that possess a fully formed and fully mineralised skeleton (gnathostomes) versus those that possess only unmineralised cartilaginous rudiments (cyclostomes). As such, extinct phylogenetic intermediates of these living lineages afford unique insights into the evolutionary assembly of the vertebrate mineralised skeleton and its canonical tissue types. Extinct jawless and jawed fishes assigned to the gnathostome stem evidence the piecemeal assembly of skeletal systems, revealing that the dermal skeleton is the earliest manifestation of a homologous mineralised skeleton. Yet the nature of the primitive dermal skeleton, itself, is poorly understood. This is principally because previous histological studies of early vertebrates lacked a phylogenetic framework required to derive evolutionary hypotheses. Nowhere is this more apparent than within Heterostraci, a diverse clade of primitive jawless vertebrates. To this end, we surveyed the dermal skeletal histology of heterostracans, inferred the plesiomorphic heterostracan skeleton and, through histological comparison to other skeletonising vertebrate clades, deduced the ancestral nature of the vertebrate dermal skeleton. Heterostracans primitively possess a four‐layered skeleton, comprising a superficial layer of odontodes composed of dentine and enameloid; a compact layer of acellular parallel‐fibred bone containing a network of vascular canals that supply the pulp canals (L1); a trabecular layer consisting of intersecting radial walls composed of acellular parallel‐fibred bone, showing osteon‐like development (L2); and a basal layer of isopedin (L3). A three layered skeleton, equivalent to the superficial layer L2 and L3 and composed of enameloid, dentine and acellular bone, is possessed by the ancestor of heterostracans + jawed vertebrates. We conclude that an osteogenic component is plesiomorphic with respect to the vertebrate dermal skeleton. Consequently, we

  4. Doom and boom on a resilient reef: climate change, algal overgrowth and coral recovery.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo Diaz-Pulido

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Coral reefs around the world are experiencing large-scale degradation, largely due to global climate change, overfishing, diseases and eutrophication. Climate change models suggest increasing frequency and severity of warming-induced coral bleaching events, with consequent increases in coral mortality and algal overgrowth. Critically, the recovery of damaged reefs will depend on the reversibility of seaweed blooms, generally considered to depend on grazing of the seaweed, and replenishment of corals by larvae that successfully recruit to damaged reefs. These processes usually take years to decades to bring a reef back to coral dominance. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In 2006, mass bleaching of corals on inshore reefs of the Great Barrier Reef caused high coral mortality. Here we show that this coral mortality was followed by an unprecedented bloom of a single species of unpalatable seaweed (Lobophora variegata, colonizing dead coral skeletons, but that corals on these reefs recovered dramatically, in less than a year. Unexpectedly, this rapid reversal did not involve reestablishment of corals by recruitment of coral larvae, as often assumed, but depended on several ecological mechanisms previously underestimated. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These mechanisms of ecological recovery included rapid regeneration rates of remnant coral tissue, very high competitive ability of the corals allowing them to out-compete the seaweed, a natural seasonal decline in the particular species of dominant seaweed, and an effective marine protected area system. Our study provides a key example of the doom and boom of a highly resilient reef, and new insights into the variability and mechanisms of reef resilience under rapid climate change.

  5. An aposymbiotic primary coral polyp counteracts acidification by active pH regulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohno, Yoshikazu; Iguchi, Akira; Shinzato, Chuya; Inoue, Mayuri; Suzuki, Atsushi; Sakai, Kazuhiko; Nakamura, Takashi

    2017-01-01

    Corals build their skeletons using extracellular calcifying fluid located in the tissue-skeleton interface. However, the mechanism by which corals control the transport of calcium and other ions from seawater and the mechanism of constant alkalization of calcifying fluid are largely unknown. To address these questions, we performed direct pH imaging at calcification sites (subcalicoblastic medium, SCM) to visualize active pH upregulation in live aposymbiotic primary coral polyps treated with HCl-acidified seawater. Active alkalization was observed in all individuals using vital staining method while the movement of HPTS and Alexa Fluor to SCM suggests that certain ions such as H+ could diffuse via a paracellular pathway to SCM. Among them, we discovered acid-induced oscillations in the pH of SCM (pHSCM), observed in 24% of polyps examined. In addition, we discovered acid-induced pH up-regulation waves in 21% of polyps examined, which propagated among SCMs after exposure to acidified seawater. Our results showed that corals can regulate pHSCM more dynamically than was previously believed. These observations will have important implications for determining how corals regulate pHSCM during calcification. We propose that corals can sense ambient seawater pH via their innate pH-sensitive systems and regulate pHSCM using several unknown pH-regulating ion transporters that coordinate with multicellular signaling occurring in coral tissue.

  6. Biology and ecology of the hydrocoral millepora on coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, John B

    2006-01-01

    Millepores are colonial polypoidal hydrozoans secreting an internal calcareous skeleton of an encrusting or upright form, often of considerable size. Defensive polyps protruding from the skeleton are numerous and highly toxic and for this reason millepores are popularly known as "stinging corals" or "fire corals." In shallow tropical seas millepore colonies are conspicuous on coral reefs and may be locally abundant and important reef-framework builders. The history of systematic research on the Milleporidae and the sister family Stylasteridae is rich and full with the works of early naturalists beginning with Linnaeus. Seventeen living millepore species are recognised. Marked phenotypic variation in form and structure of colonies is characteristic of the genus Millepora. The first published descriptions of the anatomy and histology of millepores were by H. N. Moseley in one of the Challenger Expedition reports. These original, detailed accounts by Moseley remain valid and, except for recent descriptions of the ultrastructure of the skeleton and skeletogenic tissues, have not needed much modification. Millepores occur worldwide on coral reefs at depths of between 1 and 40 m and their distribution on reefs is generally zoned in response to physical factors. Colonies may be abundant locally on coral reefs but usually comprise corals. Millepores are voracious zooplankton feeders and they obtain part of their nutrition from autotrophic sources, photosynthetic production by symbiotic zooxanthellae. Reproduction in millepores is characterised by alternation of generations with a well-developed polypoid stage that buds off planktonic medusae. Sexual reproduction is seasonal for known species and the medusae have a brief planktonic life. Asexual production is achieved by sympodial growth, the production of new skeleton and soft tissue along a growing edge or branch tip, and by the reattachment, regeneration and repair of damaged or broken colony fragments. The physiological

  7. Seasonal variation in an annually-banded coral Porites: A scanning electron microscopy investigation

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Naqvi, S.A.S.

    in high density bands and their absence in low density bands. It is proposed that during the monsoon season, run-off from the island may bring detrital material that subsequently gets incorporated in coral skeleton. By contrast, calm and dry conditions...

  8. New Cytotoxic Terpenoids from Soft Corals Nephthea chabroli and Paralemnalia thyrsoides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-Sheng Lee

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available A novel cytotoxic diterpenoid, chabrolin A (1 (possessing an unprecedented terpenoid skeleton, as well as three new cytotoxic sesquiterpenoids, parathyrsoidins E–G (2–4, were isolated by cytotoxicity-guided fractionation from soft corals Nephthea chabroli and Paralemnalia thyrsoides. The structures of the new compounds were determined by extensive analysis of spectroscopic data.

  9. Biomonitor of Environmental Stress: Coral Trace Metal Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grumet, N.; Hughen, K.

    2006-12-01

    Tropical reef corals are extremely sensitive to changes in environmental conditions and, as a result of environmental degradation and global climate change, coral reefs around the globe are severely threatened. Increased human population and development in tropical regions is leading to higher turbidity and silt loading from terrestrial runoff, increased pesticides and nutrients from agricultural land-use and sewage, and the release of toxic trace metals to coastal waters from industrial pollution. The uptake of these metals and nutrients within the coral skeletal aragonite is a sensitive biomonitor of environmental stresses on coral health. We analyzed 18 trace metals from the surface of coral skeletons collected in Bermuda, Indonesia and Belize to assess a range of threats to coral reef health - including climate change, agricultural runoff and pesticides, and coastal development and tourism. This surface sample network also includes samples representing 4 different coral species. Trace metal analysis was performed on an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (ICP-MS) to a high degree of accuracy and precision at extremely low (ppb) concentrations using a protocol we developed for samples less than 2 mg. Proper cleaning techniques were employed to minimize blank level concentrations for ultra-trace metal ICP-MS solution analysis. However, Zn/Ca and Ni/Ca concentrations remain below analytical detection limits. Initial results indicate that sea surface temperature proxies (e.g., Sr/Ca, B/Ca and Mg/Ca) display similar ratios between the different sites, whereas those metals associated with anthropogenic activities, such as Co, Pb and Cu, are site-specific and are linked to individual environmental stressors. Results from this study will be applied to down core trace metal records in the future. In doing so, we aim to understand the impacts of compounding environmental stresses on coral health, and to identify regional threshold values beyond which corals

  10. Coral skeletal geochemistry as a monitor of inshore water quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saha, Narottam; Webb, Gregory E; Zhao, Jian-Xin

    2016-10-01

    Coral reefs maintain extraordinary biodiversity and provide protection from tsunamis and storm surge, but inshore coral reef health is degrading in many regions due to deteriorating water quality. Deconvolving natural and anthropogenic changes to water quality is hampered by the lack of long term, dated water quality data but such records are required for forward modelling of reef health to aid their management. Reef corals provide an excellent archive of high resolution geochemical (trace element) proxies that can span hundreds of years and potentially provide records used through the Holocene. Hence, geochemical proxies in corals hold great promise for understanding changes in ancient water quality that can inform broader oceanographic and climatic changes in a given region. This article reviews and highlights the use of coral-based trace metal archives, including metal transported from rivers to the ocean, incorporation of trace metals into coral skeletons and the current 'state of the art' in utilizing coral trace metal proxies as tools for monitoring various types of local and regional source-specific pollution (river discharge, land use changes, dredging and dumping, mining, oil spills, antifouling paints, atmospheric sources, sewage). The three most commonly used coral trace element proxies (i.e., Ba/Ca, Mn/Ca, and Y/Ca) are closely associated with river runoff in the Great Barrier Reef, but considerable uncertainty remains regarding their complex biogeochemical cycling and controlling mechanisms. However, coral-based water quality reconstructions have suffered from a lack of understanding of so-called vital effects and early marine diagenesis. The main challenge is to identify and eliminate the influence of extraneous local factors in order to allow accurate water quality reconstructions and to develop alternate proxies to monitor water pollution. Rare earth elements have great potential as they are self-referencing and reflect basic terrestrial input

  11. Coral-the world's most diverse symbiotic ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackall, Linda L; Wilson, Bryan; van Oppen, Madeleine J H

    2015-11-01

    Zooxanthellate corals (i.e. those harbouring Symbiodinium) are the main builders of the world's shallow-water marine coral reefs. They represent intimate diverse symbioses between coral animals, single-celled photosynthetic dinoflagellates (Symbiodinium spp.), other microscopic eukaryotes, prokaryotes and viruses. Crabs and other crustaceans, worms, sponges, bivalves and hydrozoans, fishes, sea urchins, octopuses and sea stars are itinerant members of these 'rainforests of the sea'. This review focuses on the biodiversity of scleractinian coral animals and their best studied microscopic epi- and endosymbionts. In relation to coral-associated species diversity, Symbiodinium internal transcribed spacer region sequence types tally 10(2) -10(3) or up to ~15 different operational taxonomic units (OTUs, or putative species at the 97% sequence identity level; this cut-off was chosen based on intragenomic sequence diversity observed in monoclonal cultures) and prokaryotes (mostly bacterial) total 10(2) -10(4) OTUs. We analysed all publically accessible 16S rRNA gene sequence data and found Gammaproteobacteria were extremely abundant, followed by Alphaproteobacteria. Notably, Archaea were poorly represented and 'unassigned OTUs' were abundant in data generated by high-throughput DNA sequencing studies of corals. We outline and compare model systems that could be used in future studies of the coral holobiont. In our future directions, we recommend a global coral sampling effort including substantial attention being paid to method of coral tissue acquisition, which compartments (mucus, tissue, skeleton) to explore, broadening the holobiont members considered and linking biodiversity with functional investigations. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. The ancient evolutionary origins of Scleractinia revealed by azooxanthellate corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background Scleractinian corals are currently a focus of major interest because of their ecological importance and the uncertain fate of coral reefs in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressure. Despite this, remarkably little is known about the evolutionary origins of corals. The Scleractinia suddenly appear in the fossil record about 240 Ma, but the range of morphological variation seen in these Middle Triassic fossils is comparable to that of modern scleractinians, implying much earlier origins that have so far remained elusive. A significant weakness in reconstruction(s) of early coral evolution is that deep-sea corals have been poorly represented in molecular phylogenetic analyses. Results By adding new data from a large and representative range of deep-water species to existing molecular datasets and applying a relaxed molecular clock, we show that two exclusively deep-sea families, the Gardineriidae and Micrabaciidae, diverged prior to the Complexa/Robusta coral split around 425 Ma, thereby pushing the evolutionary origin of scleractinian corals deep into the Paleozoic. Conclusions The early divergence and distinctive morphologies of the extant gardineriid and micrabaciid corals suggest a link with Ordovician "scleractiniamorph" fossils that were previously assumed to represent extinct anthozoan skeletonized lineages. Therefore, scleractinian corals most likely evolved from Paleozoic soft-bodied ancestors. Modern shallow-water Scleractinia, which are dependent on symbionts, appear to have had several independent origins from solitary, non-symbiotic precursors. The Scleractinia have survived periods of massive climate change in the past, suggesting that as a lineage they may be less vulnerable to future changes than often assumed. PMID:22034946

  13. The ancient evolutionary origins of Scleractinia revealed by azooxanthellate corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolarski, Jarosław; Kitahara, Marcelo V; Miller, David J; Cairns, Stephen D; Mazur, Maciej; Meibom, Anders

    2011-10-28

    Scleractinian corals are currently a focus of major interest because of their ecological importance and the uncertain fate of coral reefs in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressure. Despite this, remarkably little is known about the evolutionary origins of corals. The Scleractinia suddenly appear in the fossil record about 240 Ma, but the range of morphological variation seen in these Middle Triassic fossils is comparable to that of modern scleractinians, implying much earlier origins that have so far remained elusive. A significant weakness in reconstruction(s) of early coral evolution is that deep-sea corals have been poorly represented in molecular phylogenetic analyses. By adding new data from a large and representative range of deep-water species to existing molecular datasets and applying a relaxed molecular clock, we show that two exclusively deep-sea families, the Gardineriidae and Micrabaciidae, diverged prior to the Complexa/Robusta coral split around 425 Ma, thereby pushing the evolutionary origin of scleractinian corals deep into the Paleozoic. The early divergence and distinctive morphologies of the extant gardineriid and micrabaciid corals suggest a link with Ordovician "scleractiniamorph" fossils that were previously assumed to represent extinct anthozoan skeletonized lineages. Therefore, scleractinian corals most likely evolved from Paleozoic soft-bodied ancestors. Modern shallow-water Scleractinia, which are dependent on symbionts, appear to have had several independent origins from solitary, non-symbiotic precursors. The Scleractinia have survived periods of massive climate change in the past, suggesting that as a lineage they may be less vulnerable to future changes than often assumed.

  14. The ancient evolutionary origins of Scleractinia revealed by azooxanthellate corals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stolarski Jarosław

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Scleractinian corals are currently a focus of major interest because of their ecological importance and the uncertain fate of coral reefs in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressure. Despite this, remarkably little is known about the evolutionary origins of corals. The Scleractinia suddenly appear in the fossil record about 240 Ma, but the range of morphological variation seen in these Middle Triassic fossils is comparable to that of modern scleractinians, implying much earlier origins that have so far remained elusive. A significant weakness in reconstruction(s of early coral evolution is that deep-sea corals have been poorly represented in molecular phylogenetic analyses. Results By adding new data from a large and representative range of deep-water species to existing molecular datasets and applying a relaxed molecular clock, we show that two exclusively deep-sea families, the Gardineriidae and Micrabaciidae, diverged prior to the Complexa/Robusta coral split around 425 Ma, thereby pushing the evolutionary origin of scleractinian corals deep into the Paleozoic. Conclusions The early divergence and distinctive morphologies of the extant gardineriid and micrabaciid corals suggest a link with Ordovician "scleractiniamorph" fossils that were previously assumed to represent extinct anthozoan skeletonized lineages. Therefore, scleractinian corals most likely evolved from Paleozoic soft-bodied ancestors. Modern shallow-water Scleractinia, which are dependent on symbionts, appear to have had several independent origins from solitary, non-symbiotic precursors. The Scleractinia have survived periods of massive climate change in the past, suggesting that as a lineage they may be less vulnerable to future changes than often assumed.

  15. Evidences linking ENSO and coral growth in the Southwestern-South Atlantic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Evangelista, H. [LARAMG, Laboratorio de Radioecologia e Mudancas Globais/DBB/UERJ. Pav. HLC, Subsolo, Maracana, RJ (Brazil); Godiva, D. [LARAMG, Laboratorio de Radioecologia e Mudancas Globais/DBB/UERJ. Pav. HLC, Subsolo, Maracana, RJ (Brazil); Universidade Federal Fluminense, Outeiro Sao Joao Batista, s/n, Centro, Departamento de Geoquimica Ambiental, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil); Sifeddine, A. [IRD, Institut de Recherche Pour le Developpement, UR055 Paleotropique, Bondy (France); Universidade Federal Fluminense, Outeiro Sao Joao Batista, s/n, Centro, Departamento de Geoquimica Ambiental, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil); Leao, Z.M.A.N.; Kikuchi, R.K.P. [UFBA/Instituto de Geociencias. Rua Barao de Geremoabo, s/n, Federacao, Salvador, BA (Brazil); Rigozo, N.R. [LARAMG, Laboratorio de Radioecologia e Mudancas Globais/DBB/UERJ. Pav. HLC, Subsolo, Maracana, RJ (Brazil); FAETEC, Faculdade de Educacao e Tecnologia Thereza Porto Marques, Jacarei, SP (Brazil); Segal, B. [UFRJ/Museu Nacional/Setor de Celenterologia/Departamento de Invertebrados, Quinta da Boa Vista s/n, Sao Cristovao, RJ (Brazil); Ambrizzi, T. [USP/Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil); Kampel, M. [INPE/Divisao de Sensoriamento Remoto, Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil); Cornec, F. le [Universidade Federal Fluminense, Outeiro Sao Joao Batista, s/n, Centro, Departamento de Geoquimica Ambiental, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil)

    2007-12-15

    Physical and biological changes in the marine environment, induced by oceanic-atmospheric processes, can be imprinted in massive coral skeletons. Herein, we present an evidence of potential El Nino impacts at the Southwestern South Atlantic Ocean (SWSA) inferred from the sclerochronology of the reef coral Favia leptophylla. The application of spectral analysis (wavelet decomposition and the iterative regression) to coral growth length and to meteorological-oceanographic parameters (air temperature, sea surface temperature and precipitation) as well as to Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) and solar irradiation indicated a major significant inverse relationship between SOI and coral growth length at the 4-8 years frequency band. We propose here that coral growth length from the SWSA could be affected by El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events through an ''atmospheric bridge'', in contrast to its direct effect at the Pacific Ocean, related to the increase in sea surface temperature. (orig.)

  16. Coral-based climate records from tropical South Atlantic: 2009/2010 ENSO event in C and O isotopes from Porites corals (Rocas Atoll, Brazil).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Natan S; Sial, Alcídes N; Kikuchi, Ruy K P; Ferreira, Valderez P; Ullmann, Clemens V; Frei, Robert; Cunha, Adriana M C

    2015-01-01

    Coral skeletons contain records of past environmental conditions due to their long life span and well calibrated geochemical signatures. C and O isotope records of corals are especially interesting, because they can highlight multidecadal variability of local climate conditions beyond the instrumental record, with high fidelity and sub-annual resolution. Although, in order to get an optimal geochemical signal in coral skeleton, sampling strategies must be followed. Here we report one of the first coral-based isotopic record from the Equatorial South Atlantic from two colonies of Porites astreoides from the Rocas Atoll (offshore Brazil), a new location for climate reconstruction. We present time series of isotopic variation from profiles along the corallite valley of one colony and the apex of the corallite fan of the other colony. Significant differences in the isotopic values between the two colonies are observed, yet both record the 2009/2010 El Niño event - a period of widespread coral bleaching - as anomalously negative δ18O values (up to -1 permil). δ13C is found to be measurably affected by the El Niño event in one colony, by more positive values (+0.39 ‰), and together with a bloom of endolithic algae, may indicate physiological alteration of this colony. Our findings indicate that corals from the Rocas Atoll can be used for monitoring climate oscillations in the tropical South Atlantic Ocean.

  17. Coral reefs - Specialized ecosystems

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Wafar, M.V.M.

    This paper discusses briefly some aspects that characterize and differentiate coral reef ecosystems from other tropical marine ecosystems. A brief account on the resources that are extractable from coral reefs, their susceptibility to natural...

  18. Fluorescent bands in massive corals record centuries of coastal rainfall

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isdale, Peter

    1984-08-01

    Massive coral colonies on the Great Barrier Reef grow outwards at 5-25 mm yr-1 (ref. 1). Skeletal density varies seasonally in all massive corals from the Great Barrier Reef and an exact temporal record of growth can be obtained by X-radiography of appropriately cut sections of the colony2,3. Environmental influences on coral growth have been described from such analyses4-6. This is the first report from the skeletons of massive corals of yellow green fluorescent bands which appear under long-wave UV light. Such fluorescence is confined to corals growing within 20 km of the shore and is not present in massive corals from mid- and outer shelf reefs of the central Great Barrier Reef region. The timing, width and intensity of the fluorescent bands correlate strongly with summer, monsoonal rainfall and coastal runoff. Large colonies, several centuries old, can provide long records of the strength and periodicity of terrestrial runoff to the tropical nearshore environment. Such records are potentially important to climatology, meteorology, agriculture, civil engineering and management of the Great Barrier Reef.

  19. Relationships between structural complexity, coral traits, and reef fish assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darling, Emily S.; Graham, Nicholas A. J.; Januchowski-Hartley, Fraser A.; Nash, Kirsty L.; Pratchett, Morgan S.; Wilson, Shaun K.

    2017-06-01

    With the ongoing loss of coral cover and the associated flattening of reef architecture, understanding the links between coral habitat and reef fishes is of critical importance. Here, we investigate whether considering coral traits and functional diversity provides new insights into the relationship between structural complexity and reef fish communities, and whether coral traits and community composition can predict structural complexity. Across 157 sites in Seychelles, Maldives, the Chagos Archipelago, and Australia's Great Barrier Reef, we find that structural complexity and reef zone are the strongest and most consistent predictors of reef fish abundance, biomass, species richness, and trophic structure. However, coral traits, diversity, and life histories provided additional predictive power for models of reef fish assemblages, and were key drivers of structural complexity. Our findings highlight that reef complexity relies on living corals—with different traits and life histories—continuing to build carbonate skeletons, and that these nuanced relationships between coral assemblages and habitat complexity can affect the structure of reef fish assemblages. Seascape-level estimates of structural complexity are rapid and cost effective with important implications for the structure and function of fish assemblages, and should be incorporated into monitoring programs.

  20. Coral skeletal geochemistry as a monitor of inshore water quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Saha, Narottam, E-mail: n.saha@uq.edu.au; Webb, Gregory E.; Zhao, Jian-Xin

    2016-10-01

    Coral reefs maintain extraordinary biodiversity and provide protection from tsunamis and storm surge, but inshore coral reef health is degrading in many regions due to deteriorating water quality. Deconvolving natural and anthropogenic changes to water quality is hampered by the lack of long term, dated water quality data but such records are required for forward modelling of reef health to aid their management. Reef corals provide an excellent archive of high resolution geochemical (trace element) proxies that can span hundreds of years and potentially provide records used through the Holocene. Hence, geochemical proxies in corals hold great promise for understanding changes in ancient water quality that can inform broader oceanographic and climatic changes in a given region. This article reviews and highlights the use of coral-based trace metal archives, including metal transported from rivers to the ocean, incorporation of trace metals into coral skeletons and the current ‘state of the art’ in utilizing coral trace metal proxies as tools for monitoring various types of local and regional source-specific pollution (river discharge, land use changes, dredging and dumping, mining, oil spills, antifouling paints, atmospheric sources, sewage). The three most commonly used coral trace element proxies (i.e., Ba/Ca, Mn/Ca, and Y/Ca) are closely associated with river runoff in the Great Barrier Reef, but considerable uncertainty remains regarding their complex biogeochemical cycling and controlling mechanisms. However, coral-based water quality reconstructions have suffered from a lack of understanding of so-called vital effects and early marine diagenesis. The main challenge is to identify and eliminate the influence of extraneous local factors in order to allow accurate water quality reconstructions and to develop alternate proxies to monitor water pollution. Rare earth elements have great potential as they are self-referencing and reflect basic terrestrial input

  1. Refining image segmentation by polygon skeletonization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Keith C.

    1987-01-01

    A skeletonization algorithm was encoded and applied to a test data set of land-use polygons taken from a USGS digital land use dataset at 1:250,000. The distance transform produced by this method was instrumental in the description of the shape, size, and level of generalization of the outlines of the polygons. A comparison of the topology of skeletons for forested wetlands and lakes indicated that some distinction based solely upon the shape properties of the areas is possible, and may be of use in an intelligent automated land cover classification system.

  2. Cosmic Ray Exposure Ages of Stony Meteorites: Space Erosion or Yarkovsky?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubincam, David Parry

    2014-01-01

    Space erosion from dust impacts may set upper limits on the cosmic ray exposure (CRE) ages of stony meteorites. A meteoroid orbiting within the asteroid belt is bombarded by both cosmic rays and interplanetary dust particles. Galactic cosmic rays penetrate only the first few meters of the meteoroid; deeper regions are shielded. The dust particle impacts create tiny craters on the meteoroid's surface, wearing it away by space erosion (abrasion) at a particular rate. Hence a particular point inside a meteoroid accumulates cosmic ray products only until that point wears away, limiting CRE ages. The results would apply to other regolith-free surfaces in the solar system as well, so that abrasion may set upper CRE age limits which depend on the dusty environment. Calculations based on N. Divine's dust populations and on micrometeoroid cratering indicate that stony meteoroids in circular ecliptic orbits at 2 AU will record 21Ne CRE ages of approx.176 x 10(exp 6) years if dust masses are in the range 10(exp -21) - 10(exp -3) kg. This is in broad agreement with the maximum observed CRE ages of approx. 100 x 10(exp 6) years for stones. High erosion rates in the inner solar system may limit the CRE ages of Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs) to approx. 120 x 10(exp 6) years. If abrasion should prove to be approx. 6 times quicker than found here, then space erosion may be responsible for many of the measured CRE ages of main belt stony meteorites. In that case the CRE ages may not measure the drift time to the resonances due to the Yarkovsky effects as in the standard scenario, and that for some reason Yarkovsky is ineffective.

  3. "Choice" and destiny: the substrate composition and mechanical stability of settlement structures can mediate coral recruit fate in post-bleached reefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Shreya; Rathod, Pooja; Alcoverro, Teresa; Arthur, Rohan

    2016-03-01

    Increasingly frequent and intense ocean warming events seriously test the buffer and recovery capacities of tropical coral reefs. Post-disturbance, available settlement structures on a reef (often dead coral skeletons) vary considerably in their mechanical stability and substrate composition, critically influencing coral recruit settlement choice and fate. In the wake of a coral mass mortality in the Lakshadweep archipelago, we examine (1) the relative availability of recruit settlement structures (from stable to unstable: reef platform, dead massive coral, consolidated rubble, dead corymbose coral, dead tabular coral, and unconsolidated rubble) in 12 recovering reefs across three atolls in the archipelago, (2) the substrate composition [crustose coralline algae (CCA), mixed turf, macroalgae] of these structural forms, and (3) whether the choice and fate of young coral are mediated by the substrate and stability of different structural forms. For this, we measured the abundance and distribution of recruit (corals of 24 common coral genera. Four years after the mass mortality, reefs differed considerably in composition of settlement structures. The structures themselves varied significantly in substrate cover with dead tables largely covered in CCA [60 ± 6.05 % (SE)] and dead corymbose coral dominated by mixed turf (61.83 ± 3.8 %). The youngest visible recruits (coral choice, the mechanical stability of settlement structures is critical in determining post-settlement coral survival. The composition and availability of settlement structures on a reef may serve as a characteristic signature of its recovery potential, aiding in assessments of reef resilience.

  4. New nanomaterials for applications in conservation and restoration of stony materials: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Sierra-Fernandez

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In recent times, nanomaterials have been applied in the construction and maintenance of the worldÅLs cultural heritage with the aim of improving the consolidation and protection treatments of damaged stone. These nanomaterials include important advantages that could solve many problems found in the traditional interventions. The present paper aims to carry out a review of the state of art on the application of nanotechnology to the conservation and restoration of the stony cultural heritage. We highlight the different types of nanoparticles currently used to produce conservation treatments with enhanced material properties and novel functionalities.

  5. Influence of Eunice norvegica on feeding and calcification in the coral Lophelia pertusa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, C. E.; van Oevelen, D.; Middelburg, J. J.; Lundälv, T.

    2012-04-01

    Lophelia pertusa is the main framework building cold-water coral in the North Atlantic. It forms complex reef structures, extending up to several km in length and several meters in hight. Many species are attracted by the coral frame work, forming a highly diverse community within the reef. Although most work has focused on the corals, the functioning of the system also depends on interactions between corals and associated species. A particular example is the Polychaete Eunice norvegica that lives in close association with the coral host. The Polychaete builds a thin texture-tube between living coral branches and stimulates the coral to calcify the tube. This process strengthens the reef framwork by thickening and connecting coral brances and thereby acts as a positive feedback on the development of large reef structures. This comes however at an metabolic cost for the coral due to the enhanced calcificationrates. Another negative feedback for cold-water coral may be food related, since aquaria observations have shown that Eunice occasionally steels food from its host coral. In this study we investigated the interactions between the coral and polychaete related to calcification and food partitioning for two food types (algae and Artemia). The uptake of 13C and 15N labeled food sources by the worm and the coral was studied in chambers with only corals, only the polychaete and both species present. After 7 days, corals and worms were analyzed for isotope incorporation in bulk tissue and skeleton samples and specific fatty acids (13C) using GC-c-IRMS (gas-chromatography-combustion-isotope ratio mass spectrometry). Corals that were kept in the presence of Eunice indeed showed a higher calcification rates of 7.4 ug C (day* g dw coral)-1, evidencing the stimulation of calcification by Eunice. Interestingly, food uptake of algae and Artemia was higher in the coral-worm treatment for both species as compared to the single species treatments. These results shed new light on

  6. A Snapshot of a Coral “Holobiont”: A Transcriptome Assembly of the Scleractinian Coral, Porites, Captures a Wide Variety of Genes from Both the Host and Symbiotic Zooxanthellae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinzato, Chuya; Inoue, Mayuri; Kusakabe, Makoto

    2014-01-01

    Massive scleractinian corals of the genus Porites are important reef builders in the Indo-Pacific, and they are more resistant to thermal stress than other stony corals, such as the genus Acropora. Because coral health and survival largely depend on the interaction between a coral host and its symbionts, it is important to understand the molecular interactions of an entire “coral holobiont”. We simultaneously sequenced transcriptomes of Porites australiensis and its symbionts using the Illumina Hiseq2000 platform. We obtained 14.3 Gbp of sequencing data and assembled it into 74,997 contigs (average: 1,263 bp, N50 size: 2,037 bp). We successfully distinguished contigs originating from the host (Porites) and the symbiont (Symbiodinium) by aligning nucleotide sequences with the decoded Acropora digitifera and Symbiodinium minutum genomes. In contrast to previous coral transcriptome studies, at least 35% of the sequences were found to have originated from the symbionts, indicating that it is possible to analyze both host and symbiont transcriptomes simultaneously. Conserved protein domain and KEGG analyses showed that the dataset contains broad gene repertoires of both Porites and Symbiodinium. Effective utilization of sequence reads revealed that the polymorphism rate in P. australiensis is 1.0% and identified the major symbiotic Symbiodinium as Type C15. Analyses of amino acid biosynthetic pathways suggested that this Porites holobiont is probably able to synthesize most of the common amino acids and that Symbiodinium is potentially able to provide essential amino acids to its host. We believe this to be the first molecular evidence of complementarity in amino acid metabolism between coral hosts and their symbionts. We successfully assembled genes originating from both the host coral and the symbiotic Symbiodinium to create a snapshot of the coral holobiont transcriptome. This dataset will facilitate a deeper understanding of molecular mechanisms of coral

  7. Distributions and habitat associations of deep-water corals in Norfolk and Baltimore Canyons, Mid-Atlantic Bight, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooke, S. D.; Watts, M. W.; Heil, A. D.; Rhode, M.; Mienis, F.; Duineveld, G. C. A.; Davies, A. J.; Ross, S. W.

    2017-03-01

    A multi-disciplinary study of two major submarine canyons, Baltimore Canyon and Norfolk Canyon, off the US mid-Atlantic coast focused on the ecology and biology of canyon habitats, particularly those supporting deep-sea corals. Historical data on deep-sea corals from these canyons were sparse with less than 750 records for the mid-Atlantic region, with most being soft sediment species. This study substantially increased the number of deep-sea coral records for the target canyons and the region. Large gorgonians were the dominant structure-forming coral taxa on exposed hard substrates, but several species of scleractinians were also documented, including first observations of Lophelia pertusa in the mid-Atlantic Bight region. Coral distribution varied within and between the two canyons, with greater abundance of the octocoral Paragorgia arborea in Baltimore Canyon, and higher occurrence of stony corals in Norfolk Canyon; these observations reflect the differences in environmental conditions, particularly turbidity, between the canyons. Some species have a wide distribution (e.g., P. arborea, Primnoa resedaeformis, Anthothela grandiflora), while others are limited to certain habitat types and/or depth zones (e.g., Paramuricea placomus, L. pertusa, Solenosmilia variabilis). The distribution of a species is driven by a combination of factors, which include availability of appropriate physical structure and environmental conditions. Although the diversity of the structure-forming corals (gorgonians, branching scleractinians and large anemones) was low, many areas of both canyons supported high coral abundance and a diverse coral-associated community. The canyons provide suitable habitat for the development of deep-sea coral communities that is not readily available elsewhere on the sedimented shelf and slope of the Mid-Atlantic Bight.

  8. Determining the extent and characterizing coral reef habitats of the northern latitudes of the Florida Reef Tract (Martin County).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Brian K; Gilliam, David S

    2013-01-01

    Climate change has recently been implicated in poleward shifts of many tropical species including corals; thus attention focused on higher-latitude coral communities is warranted to investigate possible range expansions and ecosystem shifts due to global warming. As the northern extension of the Florida Reef Tract (FRT), the third-largest barrier reef ecosystem in the world, southeast Florida (25-27° N latitude) is a prime region to study such effects. Most of the shallow-water FRT benthic habitats have been mapped, however minimal data and limited knowledge exist about the coral reef communities of its northernmost reaches off Martin County. First benthic habitat mapping was conducted using newly acquired high resolution LIDAR bathymetry and aerial photography where possible to map the spatial extent of coral reef habitats. Quantitative data were collected to characterize benthic cover and stony coral demographics and a comprehensive accuracy assessment was performed. The data were then analyzed in a habitat biogeography context to determine if a new coral reef ecosystem region designation was warranted. Of the 374 km(2) seafloor mapped, 95.2% was Sand, 4.1% was Coral Reef and Colonized Pavement, and 0.7% was Other Delineations. Map accuracy assessment yielded an overall accuracy of 94.9% once adjusted for known map marginal proportions. Cluster analysis of cross-shelf habitat type and widths indicated that the benthic habitats were different than those further south and warranted designation of a new coral reef ecosystem region. Unlike the FRT further south, coral communities were dominated by cold-water tolerant species and LIDAR morphology indicated no evidence of historic reef growth during warmer climates. Present-day hydrographic conditions may be inhibiting poleward expansion of coral communities along Florida. This study provides new information on the benthic community composition of the northern FRT, serving as a baseline for future community shift and

  9. Determining the extent and characterizing coral reef habitats of the northern latitudes of the Florida Reef Tract (Martin County.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian K Walker

    Full Text Available Climate change has recently been implicated in poleward shifts of many tropical species including corals; thus attention focused on higher-latitude coral communities is warranted to investigate possible range expansions and ecosystem shifts due to global warming. As the northern extension of the Florida Reef Tract (FRT, the third-largest barrier reef ecosystem in the world, southeast Florida (25-27° N latitude is a prime region to study such effects. Most of the shallow-water FRT benthic habitats have been mapped, however minimal data and limited knowledge exist about the coral reef communities of its northernmost reaches off Martin County. First benthic habitat mapping was conducted using newly acquired high resolution LIDAR bathymetry and aerial photography where possible to map the spatial extent of coral reef habitats. Quantitative data were collected to characterize benthic cover and stony coral demographics and a comprehensive accuracy assessment was performed. The data were then analyzed in a habitat biogeography context to determine if a new coral reef ecosystem region designation was warranted. Of the 374 km(2 seafloor mapped, 95.2% was Sand, 4.1% was Coral Reef and Colonized Pavement, and 0.7% was Other Delineations. Map accuracy assessment yielded an overall accuracy of 94.9% once adjusted for known map marginal proportions. Cluster analysis of cross-shelf habitat type and widths indicated that the benthic habitats were different than those further south and warranted designation of a new coral reef ecosystem region. Unlike the FRT further south, coral communities were dominated by cold-water tolerant species and LIDAR morphology indicated no evidence of historic reef growth during warmer climates. Present-day hydrographic conditions may be inhibiting poleward expansion of coral communities along Florida. This study provides new information on the benthic community composition of the northern FRT, serving as a baseline for future

  10. Development of bacterial biofilms on artificial corals in comparison to surface-associated microbes of hard corals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael John Sweet

    Full Text Available Numerous studies have demonstrated the differences in bacterial communities associated with corals versus those in their surrounding environment. However, these environmental samples often represent vastly different microbial micro-environments with few studies having looked at the settlement and growth of bacteria on surfaces similar to corals. As a result, it is difficult to determine which bacteria are associated specifically with coral tissue surfaces. In this study, early stages of passive settlement from the water column to artificial coral surfaces (formation of a biofilm were assessed. Changes in bacterial diversity (16S rRNA gene, were studied on artificially created resin nubbins that were modelled from the skeleton of the reef building coral Acropora muricata. These models were dip-coated in sterile agar, mounted in situ on the reef and followed over time to monitor bacterial community succession. The bacterial community forming the biofilms remained significantly different (R = 0.864 p<0.05 from that of the water column and from the surface mucus layer (SML of the coral at all times from 30 min to 96 h. The water column was dominated by members of the α-proteobacteria, the developed community on the biofilms dominated by γ-proteobacteria, whereas that within the SML was composed of a more diverse array of groups. Bacterial communities present within the SML do not appear to arise from passive settlement from the water column, but instead appear to have become established through a selection process. This selection process was shown to be dependent on some aspects of the physico-chemical structure of the settlement surface, since agar-coated slides showed distinct communities to coral-shaped surfaces. However, no significant differences were found between different surface coatings, including plain agar and agar enhanced with coral mucus exudates. Therefore future work should consider physico-chemical surface properties as

  11. Corals diseases are a major cause of coral death

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corals, like humans, are susceptible to diseases. Some coral diseases are associated with pathogenic bacteria; however, the causes of most remain unknown. Some diseases trigger rapid and extensive mortality, while others slowly cause localized color changes or injure coral tiss...

  12. Evaluating the Effect of Coral Topography on the Climate Signal in Porites spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobel, A. W.; Quinn, T. M.; Maupin, C. R.

    2008-12-01

    Understanding how the record of environmental variations in the surface waters of tropical oceans is encoded in the skeletal geochemistry of corals is essential to deciding how to extract a signal from their skeletons. A few previous investigators have studied coral growth patterns and corresponding geochemical signals; however despite this attention, questions remain about the best way to extract a climate record from coral cores with regard to skeletal topography and drill path location. Utilizing a slabbed core of Porites lutea from Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu (~15°06'S, 166°52'E) we extracted coral samples along growth bands to evaluate geochemical variations within skeletal isochrons. Coral samples were analyzed using an inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometer to determine Sr/Ca ratios, a proxy for sea surface temperature (SST.) Ninety-three Sr/Ca determinations were made from the first isochron; the average value was 8.982 ± 0.030 mmol/mol. The variation about the mean is nearly identical to the analytical precision associated with the Sr/Ca determination. These results suggest that drilling a diachronous path along any axis of growth in a coral skeleton should yield similar results. A second isochron extracted from the coral is being processed to replicate these initial results. In a second experiment, utilizing another slabbed core of Porites lutea from Efate, Vanuatu (~17°34'S, 168°14'E) two sets of paths were drilled through sections of coral characterized by pronounced skeletal topography. In each of these pairs, one path was drilled along an axis of minimum growth and another along an axis of maximum growth. Coral samples were analyzed in the same way as described above to determine Sr/Ca ratios and these analytical determinations are being compared to the instrumental record of SST variations in the region. These results will show whether growth topography is an important variable to monitor when extracting a climate signal from

  13. Trace metal anomalies in bleached Porites coral at Meiji Reef, tropical South China Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shu; Yu, Kefu; Zhao, Jianxin; Feng, Yuexing; Chen, Tianran

    2017-01-01

    Coral bleaching has generally been recognized as the main reason for tropical coral reef degradation, but there are few long-term records of coral bleaching events. In this study, trace metals including chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), molybdenum (Mo), manganese (Mn), lead (Pb), tin (Sn), titanium (Ti), vanadium (V), and yttrium (Y), were analyzed in two Porites corals collected from Meiji Reef in the tropical South China Sea (SCS) to assess differences in trace metal concentrations in bleached compared with unbleached coral growth bands. Ti, V, Cr, and Mo generally showed irregular fluctuations in both corals. Bleached layers contained high concentrations of Mn, Cu, Sn, and Pb. Unbleached layers showed moderately high concentrations of Mn and Cu only. The different distribution of trace metals in Porites may be attributable to different selectivity on the basis of vital utility or toxicity. Ti, V, Cr, and Mo are discriminated against by both coral polyps and zooxanthellae, but Mn, Cu, Sn, and Pb are accumulated by zooxanthellae and only Mn and Cu are accumulated by polyps as essential elements. The marked increase in Cu, Mn, Pb, and Sn are associated with bleaching processes, including mucus secretion, tissue retraction, and zooxanthellae expulsion and occlusion. Variation in these trace elements within the coral skeleton can be used as potential tracers of short-lived bleaching events.

  14. Response of coral calcification and calcifying fluid composition to thermally induced bleaching stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Olivo, J P; McCulloch, M T

    2017-05-19

    Severe, global-scale thermal stress events like those of 1998 and 2016, are becoming more frequent and intense, potentially compromising the future of coral reefs. Here we report the effects of the 1998 bleaching event on coral calcification as well as the composition of the calcifying fluid (cf) from which corals precipitate their calcium carbonate skeletons. This was investigated by using the Sr/Ca, Li/Mg (temperature), and boron isotopes (δ(11)B) and B/Ca (carbonate chemistry) proxies in a Porites sp. coral. Following the summer of 1998 the coral exhibited a prolonged period (~18 months) of reduced calcification (~60%) and a breakdown in the seasonality of the geochemical proxies. However, the maintenance of elevated dissolved inorganic carbon (DICcf; >×2 seawater) and pHcf (>8.3 compared to seawater ~8.0) even during severe stress of 1998 indicate that a minimum threshold of high aragonite saturation state (Ωcf) of ~14 (~×4 seawater), is an essential pre-requisite for coral calcification. However, despite maintaining elevated levels of Ωcf even under severe stress, coral growth is still impaired. We attribute this to reductions in either the effective active volume of calcification and/or DICcf as bleaching compromises the photosynthetically fixed carbon pool available to the coral.

  15. Photoacclimatization by the coral Montastraea cavernosa in the mesophotic zone: light, food, and genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lesser, Michael P; Slattery, Marc; Stat, Michael; Ojimi, Michiko; Gates, Ruth D; Grottoli, Andrea

    2010-04-01

    Most studies on coral reefs have focused on shallow reef (< 30 m) systems due to the technical limitations of conducting scientific diving deeper than 30 m. Compared to their shallow-water counterparts, these mesophotic coral reefs (30-150 m) are understudied, which has slowed our broader understanding of the biodiversity, ecology, and connectivity of shallow and deep coral reef communities. We know that the light environment is an important component of the productivity, physiology, and ecology of corals, and it restricts the distribution of most species of coral to depths of 60 m or less. In the Bahamas, the coral Montastraea cavernosa has a wide depth distribution, and it is one of the most numerous corals at mesophotic depths. Using a range of optical, physiological, and biochemical approaches, the relative dependence on autotrophy vs. heterotrophy was assessed for this coral from 3 to 91 m. These measurements show that the quantum yield of PSII fluorescence increases significantly with depth for M. cavernosa while gross primary productivity decreases with depth. Both morphological and physiological photoacclimatization occurs to a depth of 91 m, and stable isotope data of the host tissues, symbionts, and skeleton reveal a marked decrease in productivity and a sharp transition to heterotrophy between 45 and 61 m. Below these depths, significant changes in the genetic composition of the zooxanthellae community, including genotypes not previously observed, occur and suggest that there is strong selection for zooxanthellae that are suited for survival in the light-limited environment where mesophotic M. cavernosa are occurring.

  16. Body mass estimation from the skeleton

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lacoste Jeanson, Alizé; Santos, Frédéric; Villa, Chiara

    2017-01-01

    -at-death estimation from the skeleton. Several methods are regularly used by both archaeologists and forensic practitioners to estimate individual BM. The most commonly used methods are based on femoral head breadth, or stature and bi-iliac breadth. However, those methods have been created from mean population BMs......Estimating an individual body mass (BM) from the skeleton is a challenge for forensic anthropology. However, identifying someone's BMI (Body Mass Index) category, i.e. underweight, normal, overweight or obese, could contribute to identification. Individual BM is also known to influence the age...... and are therefore meant to estimate the average BM of a population. Being that they are based on individual BM data and estimated femoral cortical areas, the newest published methods are supposed to be more accurate. We evaluated the accuracy and reliability of the most commonly used and most recent BM estimation...

  17. Calcaneal spurs among San and Khoi skeletons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caroline, Cermak; Kirchengast, Sylvia

    2015-01-01

    Only few studies considered the prevalence of calcaneal enthesophytes commonly called heel spurs among historic skeleton samples. In the present study the frequency of plantar calcaneal spurs among 54 19(th) century Khoisan skeletons was analyzed. Five individuals (9.6 %) had a plantar calcaneal spur at the right side or left side. Calcaneal spurs were more likely to occur in older individuals. More than 20 % of the individuals aged between 40 and 60 years (mature) showed plantar spurs, while 6.2 % of the individuals aged between 20 and 40 years had plantar spurs; however this difference was not significant. No sex differences were present in the prevalence of calcaneal spurs. Male and female individuals did not differ in the metric dimensions of the calcanceal spurs significantly.

  18. DeepSkeleton: Learning Multi-Task Scale-Associated Deep Side Outputs for Object Skeleton Extraction in Natural Images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Wei; Zhao, Kai; Jiang, Yuan; Wang, Yan; Bai, Xiang; Yuille, Alan

    2017-11-01

    Object skeletons are useful for object representation and object detection. They are complementary to the object contour, and provide extra information, such as how object scale (thickness) varies among object parts. But object skeleton extraction from natural images is very challenging, because it requires the extractor to be able to capture both local and non-local image context in order to determine the scale of each skeleton pixel. In this paper, we present a novel fully convolutional network with multiple scale-associated side outputs to address this problem. By observing the relationship between the receptive field sizes of the different layers in the network and the skeleton scales they can capture, we introduce two scale-associated side outputs to each stage of the network. The network is trained by multi-task learning, where one task is skeleton localization to classify whether a pixel is a skeleton pixel or not, and the other is skeleton scale prediction to regress the scale of each skeleton pixel. Supervision is imposed at different stages by guiding the scale-associated side outputs toward the groundtruth skeletons at the appropriate scales. The responses of the multiple scale-associated side outputs are then fused in a scale-specific way to detect skeleton pixels using multiple scales effectively. Our method achieves promising results on two skeleton extraction datasets, and significantly outperforms other competitors. Additionally, the usefulness of the obtained skeletons and scales (thickness) are verified on two object detection applications: Foreground object segmentation and object proposal detection.

  19. The role of floridoside in osmoadaptation of coral-associated algal endosymbionts to high-salinity conditions

    KAUST Repository

    Ochsenkuhn, Michael A.

    2017-08-17

    The endosymbiosis between Symbiodinium dinoflagellates and stony corals provides the foundation of coral reef ecosystems. The survival of these ecosystems is under threat at a global scale, and better knowledge is needed to conceive strategies for mitigating future reef loss. Environmental disturbance imposing temperature, salinity, and nutrient stress can lead to the loss of the Symbiodinium partner, causing so-called coral bleaching. Some of the most thermotolerant coral-Symbiodinium associations occur in the Persian/Arabian Gulf and the Red Sea, which also represent the most saline coral habitats. We studied whether Symbiodinium alter their metabolite content in response to high-salinity environments. We found that Symbiodinium cells exposed to high salinity produced high levels of the osmolyte 2-O-glycerol-α-d-galactopyranoside (floridoside), both in vitro and in their coral host animals, thereby increasing their capacity and, putatively, the capacity of the holobiont to cope with the effects of osmotic stress in extreme environments. Given that floridoside has been previously shown to also act as an antioxidant, this osmolyte may serve a dual function: first, to serve as a compatible organic osmolyte accumulated by Symbiodinium in response to elevated salinities and, second, to counter reactive oxygen species produced as a consequence of potential salinity and heat stress.

  20. Skeleton-Based Abnormal Gait Detection

    OpenAIRE

    Trong-Nguyen Nguyen; Huu-Hung Huynh; Jean Meunier

    2016-01-01

    Human gait analysis plays an important role in musculoskeletal disorder diagnosis. Detecting anomalies in human walking, such as shuffling gait, stiff leg or unsteady gait, can be difficult if the prior knowledge of such a gait pattern is not available. We propose an approach for detecting abnormal human gait based on a normal gait model. Instead of employing the color image, silhouette, or spatio-temporal volume, our model is created based on human joint positions (skeleton) in time series. ...

  1. Media Literacy, News Literacy, or News Appreciation? A Case Study of the News Literacy Program at Stony Brook University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleming, Jennifer

    2014-01-01

    This case study provides practical and theoretical insights into the Stony Brook news literacy program, which is one of the most ambitious and well-funded curricular experiments in modern journalism education and media literacy. Analysis of document, interview, and observation data indicates that news literacy educators sought to teach students…

  2. Enrichment Programs and Professional Development in the Geosciences: Best Practices and Models (OEDG Research Report, Stony Brook University)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gafney, Leo

    2017-01-01

    This report is based on several evaluations of NSF-funded geoscience projects at Stony Brook University on Long Island, NY. The report reviews the status of K-12 geoscience education, identifying challenges posed by the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), the experiences of university faculty engaged in teacher preparation, state…

  3. What Do Facts Have to Do with It? Exploring Instructional Emphasis in Stony Brook News Literacy Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleming, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    An analytic matrix comprised of multiple media literacy teaching and learning principles is conceptualized to examine a model of news literacy developed by journalism educators at Stony Brook University. The multidimensional analysis indicates that news literacy instructors focus on teaching students how to question and assess the veracity of news…

  4. Uranium in the silicate inclusions of stony-iron and iron meteorites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crozaz, G.; Sibley, S.F.; Tasker, D.R. (Washington Univ., St. Louis, MO (USA). Dept. of Earth and Planetary Sciences; Washington Univ., St. Louis, MO (USA). McDonnell Center for the Space Sciences)

    1982-05-01

    The microdistribution of U has been studied, using fission track techniques, in eleven mesosiderites, seven pallasites and four iron meteorites with silicate inclusions. When concentrated, U is usually found in phosphates: merrillite and/or chlorapatite. As in stony meteorites, the U concentrations in a given phosphate phase are highly variable from meteorite to meteorite and sometimes also exhibit variations in the same meteorite. Uranium is found to be concentrated in merrillite in all the mesosiderites except Bondoc where none was observed. No U-rich phase was identified in six of the seven pallasites. In the seventh, Marjalahti, there are merrillite grains with concentrations ranging from 0.06 to 0.14 ppm. Where observed, the phosphates from silicate inclusions in the irons appear to have U concentrations similar to the mesosiderites.

  5. An evaluation of coral lophelia pertusa mucus as an analytical matrix for environmental monitoring: A preliminary proteomic study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Provan, Fiona; Nilsen, Mari Mæland; Larssen, Eivind; Uleberg, Kai-Erik; Sydnes, Magne O; Lyng, Emily; Øysæd, Kjell Birger; Baussant, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    For the environmental monitoring of coral, mucus appears to be an appropriate biological matrix due to its array of functions in coral biology and the non-intrusive manner in which it can be collected. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the feasibility of using mucus of the stony coral Lophelia pertusa (L. pertusa) as an analytical matrix for discovery of biomarkers used for environmental monitoring. More specifically, to assess whether a mass-spectrometry-based proteomic approach can be applied to characterize the protein composition of coral mucus and changes related to petroleum discharges at the seafloor. Surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (SELDI-TOF MS) screening analyses of orange and white L. pertusa showed that the mucosal protein composition varies significantly with color phenotype, a pattern not reported prior to this study. Hence, to reduce variability from phenotype difference, L. pertusa white individuals only were selected to characterize in more detail the basal protein composition in mucus using liquid chromatography, mass spectrometry, mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). In total, 297 proteins were identified in L. pertusa mucus of unexposed coral individuals. Individuals exposed to drill cuttings in the range 2 to 12 mg/L showed modifications in coral mucus protein composition compared to unexposed corals. Although the results were somewhat inconsistent between individuals and require further validation in both the lab and the field, this study demonstrated preliminary encouraging results for discovery of protein markers in coral mucus that might provide more comprehensive insight into potential consequences attributed to anthropogenic stressors and may be used in future monitoring of coral health.

  6. Physiological and biogeochemical traits of bleaching and recovery in the mounding species of coral Porites lobata: implications for resilience in mounding corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levas, Stephen J; Grottoli, Andréa G; Hughes, Adam; Osburn, Christopher L; Matsui, Yohei

    2013-01-01

    Mounding corals survive bleaching events in greater numbers than branching corals. However, no study to date has determined the underlying physiological and biogeochemical trait(s) that are responsible for mounding coral holobiont resilience to bleaching. Furthermore, the potential of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) as a source of fixed carbon to bleached corals has never been determined. Here, Porites lobata corals were experimentally bleached for 23 days and then allowed to recover for 0, 1, 5, and 11 months. At each recovery interval a suite of analyses were performed to assess their recovery (photosynthesis, respiration, chlorophyll a, energy reserves, tissue biomass, calcification, δ(13)C of the skeletal, δ(13)C, and δ(15)N of the animal host and endosymbiont fractions). Furthermore, at 0 months of recovery, the assimilation of photosynthetically acquired and zooplankton-feeding acquired carbon into the animal host, endosymbiont, skeleton, and coral-mediated DOC were measured via (13)C-pulse-chase labeling. During the first month of recovery, energy reserves and tissue biomass in bleached corals were maintained despite reductions in chlorophyll a, photosynthesis, and the assimilation of photosynthetically fixed carbon. At the same time, P. lobata corals catabolized carbon acquired from zooplankton and seemed to take up DOC as a source of fixed carbon. All variables that were negatively affected by bleaching recovered within 5 to 11 months. Thus, bleaching resilience in the mounding coral P. lobata is driven by its ability to actively catabolize zooplankton-acquired carbon and seemingly utilize DOC as a significant fixed carbon source, facilitating the maintenance of energy reserves and tissue biomass. With the frequency and intensity of bleaching events expected to increase over the next century, coral diversity on future reefs may favor not only mounding morphologies but species like P. lobata, which have the ability to utilize heterotrophic sources of

  7. Physiological and biogeochemical traits of bleaching and recovery in the mounding species of coral Porites lobata: implications for resilience in mounding corals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J Levas

    Full Text Available Mounding corals survive bleaching events in greater numbers than branching corals. However, no study to date has determined the underlying physiological and biogeochemical trait(s that are responsible for mounding coral holobiont resilience to bleaching. Furthermore, the potential of dissolved organic carbon (DOC as a source of fixed carbon to bleached corals has never been determined. Here, Porites lobata corals were experimentally bleached for 23 days and then allowed to recover for 0, 1, 5, and 11 months. At each recovery interval a suite of analyses were performed to assess their recovery (photosynthesis, respiration, chlorophyll a, energy reserves, tissue biomass, calcification, δ(13C of the skeletal, δ(13C, and δ(15N of the animal host and endosymbiont fractions. Furthermore, at 0 months of recovery, the assimilation of photosynthetically acquired and zooplankton-feeding acquired carbon into the animal host, endosymbiont, skeleton, and coral-mediated DOC were measured via (13C-pulse-chase labeling. During the first month of recovery, energy reserves and tissue biomass in bleached corals were maintained despite reductions in chlorophyll a, photosynthesis, and the assimilation of photosynthetically fixed carbon. At the same time, P. lobata corals catabolized carbon acquired from zooplankton and seemed to take up DOC as a source of fixed carbon. All variables that were negatively affected by bleaching recovered within 5 to 11 months. Thus, bleaching resilience in the mounding coral P. lobata is driven by its ability to actively catabolize zooplankton-acquired carbon and seemingly utilize DOC as a significant fixed carbon source, facilitating the maintenance of energy reserves and tissue biomass. With the frequency and intensity of bleaching events expected to increase over the next century, coral diversity on future reefs may favor not only mounding morphologies but species like P. lobata, which have the ability to utilize heterotrophic

  8. Corals as climate recorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flannery, Jennifer A.; Poore, Richard Z.

    2010-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Coral Reef Ecosystem Studies (CREST) Project is analyzing corals from various sites in the Caribbean region, Dry Tortugas National Park, Biscayne National Park, other areas of the Florida Keys, and the Virgin Islands. The objective of this project is to develop records of past environmental change to better our understanding of climate variability. The records are being used to document changes over the last few centuries and to determine how corals and coral reefs have responded to any changes.

  9. Mitochondrial Genome Rearrangements in the Scleractinia/Corallimorpharia Complex: Implications for Coral Phylogeny

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Mei-Fang; Kitahara, Marcelo Visentini; Luo, Haiwei; Tracey, Dianne; Geller, Jonathan; Fukami, Hironobu; Miller, David John; Chen, Chaolun Allen

    2014-01-01

    Corallimorpharia is a small Order of skeleton-less animals that is closely related to the reef-building corals (Scleractinia) and of fundamental interest in the context of understanding the potential impacts of climate change in the future on coral reefs. The relationship between the nominal Orders Corallimorpharia and Scleractinia is controversial—the former is either the closest outgroup to the Scleractinia or alternatively is derived from corals via skeleton loss. This latter scenario, the “naked coral” hypothesis, is strongly supported by analyses based on mitochondrial (mt) protein sequences, whereas the former is equally strongly supported by analyses of mt nucleotide sequences. The “naked coral” hypothesis seeks to link skeleton loss in the putative ancestor of corallimorpharians with a period of elevated oceanic CO2 during the Cretaceous, leading to the idea that these skeleton-less animals may be harbingers for the fate of coral reefs under global climate change. In an attempt to better understand their evolutionary relationships, we examined mt genome organization in a representative range (12 species, representing 3 of the 4 extant families) of corallimorpharians and compared these patterns with other Hexacorallia. The most surprising finding was that mt genome organization in Corallimorphus profundus, a deep-water species that is the most scleractinian-like of all corallimorpharians on the basis of morphology, was much more similar to the common scleractinian pattern than to those of other corallimorpharians. This finding is consistent with the idea that C. profundus represents a key position in the coral corallimorpharian transition. PMID:24769753

  10. 21st-century rise in anthropogenic nitrogen deposition on a remote coral reef

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Haojia; Chen, Yi-Chi; Wang, Xingchen T.; Wong, George T. F.; Cohen, Anne L.; DeCarlo, Thomas M.; Weigand, Mira A.; Mii, Horng-Sheng; Sigman, Daniel M.

    2017-05-01

    With the rapid rise in pollution-associated nitrogen inputs to the western Pacific, it has been suggested that even the open ocean has been affected. In a coral core from Dongsha Atoll, a remote coral reef ecosystem, we observe a decline in the 15N/14N of coral skeleton-bound organic matter, which signals increased deposition of anthropogenic atmospheric N on the open ocean and its incorporation into plankton and, in turn, the atoll corals. The first clear change occurred just before 2000 CE, decades later than predicted by other work. The amplitude of change suggests that, by 2010, anthropogenic atmospheric N deposition represented 20 ± 5% of the annual N input to the surface ocean in this region, which appears to be at the lower end of other estimates.

  11. New insights from coral growth band studies in an era of rapid environmental change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lough, Janice M.; Cooper, Timothy F.

    2011-10-01

    The rapid formation of calcium carbonate coral skeletons (calcification) fuelled by the coral-algal symbiosis is the backbone of tropical coral reef ecosystems. However, the efficacy of calcification is measurably influenced by the sea's physico-chemical environment, which is changing rapidly. Warming oceans have already led to increased frequency and severity of coral bleaching, and ocean acidification has a demonstrable potential to cause reduced rates of calcification. There is now general agreement that ocean warming and acidification are attributable to human activities increasing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere, and the large part of the extra carbon dioxide (the main greenhouse gas) that is absorbed by oceans. Certain massive corals provide historical perspectives on calcification through the presence of dateable annual density banding patterns. Each band is a page in an environmental archive that reveals past responses of growth (linear extension, skeletal density and calcification rate) and provides a basis for prediction of future of coral growth. A second major line of research focuses on the measurement of various geochemical tracers incorporated into the growth bands, allowing the reconstruction of past marine climate conditions (i.e. palaeoclimatology). Here, we focus on the structural properties of the annual density bands themselves (viz. density; linear extension), exploring their utility in providing both perspectives on the past and pointers to the future of calcification on coral reefs. We conclude that these types of coral growth records, though relatively neglected in recent years compared to the geochemical studies, remain immensely valuable aids to unravelling the consequences of anthropogenic climate change on coral reefs. Moreover, an understanding of coral growth processes is an essential pre-requisite for proper interpretation of studies of geochemical tracers in corals.

  12. Association of coral algal symbionts with a diverse viral community responsive to heat shock

    KAUST Repository

    Brüwer, Jan D.

    2017-08-17

    Stony corals provide the structural foundation of coral reef ecosystems and are termed holobionts given they engage in symbioses, in particular with photosynthetic dinoflagellates of the genus Symbiodinium. Besides Symbiodinium, corals also engage with bacteria affecting metabolism, immunity, and resilience of the coral holobiont, but the role of associated viruses is largely unknown. In this regard, the increase of studies using RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) to assess gene expression provides an opportunity to elucidate viral signatures encompassed within the data via careful delineation of sequence reads and their source of origin.Here, we re-analyzed an RNA-Seq dataset from a cultured coral symbiont (Symbiodinium microadriaticum, Clade A1) across four experimental treatments (control, cold shock, heat shock, dark shock) to characterize associated viral diversity, abundance, and gene expression. Our approach comprised the filtering and removal of host sequence reads, subsequent phylogenetic assignment of sequence reads of putative viral origin, and the assembly and analysis of differentially expressed viral genes. About 15.46% (123 million) of all sequence reads were non-host-related, of which <1% could be classified as archaea, bacteria, or virus. Of these, 18.78% were annotated as virus and comprised a diverse community consistent across experimental treatments. Further, non-host related sequence reads assembled into 56,064 contigs, including 4856 contigs of putative viral origin that featured 43 differentially expressed genes during heat shock. The differentially expressed genes included viral kinases, ubiquitin, and ankyrin repeat proteins (amongst others), which are suggested to help the virus proliferate and inhibit the algal host\\'s antiviral response.Our results suggest that a diverse viral community is associated with coral algal endosymbionts of the genus Symbiodinium, which prompts further research on their ecological role in coral health and resilience.

  13. Static measurements of the resilience of Caribbean coral populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew W. Bruckner

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The progressive downward shift in dominance of key reef building corals, coupled with dramatic increases in macroalgae and other nuisance species, fields of unstable coral rubble ,loss of structural relief, and declines of major functional groups of fishes is a common occurrence throughout the Caribbean today. The incorporation of resilience principles into management is a proposed strategy to reverse this trend and ensure proper functioning of coral reefs under predicted scenarios of climate change, yet ecosystem processes and functions that underlie reef resilience are not fully understood. Rapid assessments using the Atlantic and Gulf Rapid Reef Assessment (AGRRA and the IUCN Resilience Assessment protocol can provide baseline information on reef resilience. A key aspect of these surveys focuses on coral population dynamics, including measures of coral cover, size, partial and whole-colony mortality, condition, and recruitment. One challenge is that these represent static measures involving a single assessment. Without following individual corals over time, it is difficult to determine rates of survival and growth of recruits and adult colonies, and differentiation of juveniles from small remnants of older colonies may not be possible, especially when macroalgal cover is high. To address this limitation, corals assessed in Bonaire in July 2010 were subdivided into two categories: 1 colonies on the reef substrate; and 2 colonies colonizing dead corals and exposed skeletal surfaces of living corals. Coral populations in Bonaire exhibited many features indicative of high resilience, including high coral cover (often 30-50%, high levels of recruitment, and a large number of corals that settled on dead corals and survived to larger size-classes. Overall, the skeletal surfaces of 12 species of corals were colonized by 16 species of corals, with up to 12 settlers on each colony, most (67% on M. annularis (complex skeletons. Nevertheless, completely

  14. A Compartmental Comparison of Major Lipid Species in a Coral-Symbiodinium Endosymbiosis: Evidence that the Coral Host Regulates Lipogenesis of Its Cytosolic Lipid Bodies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hung-Kai Chen

    Full Text Available The lipid body (LB formation in the host coral gastrodermal cell cytoplasm is a hallmark of the coral-Symbiodinium endosymbiosis, and such lipid-based entities are not found in endosymbiont-free cnidarian cells. Therefore, the elucidation of lipogenesis regulation in LBs and how it is related to the lipid metabolism of the host and endosymbiont could provide direct insight to understand the symbiosis mechanism. Herein, the lipid composition of host cells of the stony coral Euphyllia glabrescens, as well as that of their cytoplasmic LBs and in hospite Symbiodinium populations, was examined by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS, and six major lipid species were identified: wax esters, sterol esters, triacylglycerols, cholesterols, free fatty acids, and phospholipids. Their concentrations differed significantly between host coral cells, LBs, and Symbiodinium, suggesting compartmental regulation. WE were only present in the host coral and were particularly highly concentrated in LBs. Amongst the four species of WE, the monoene R = C18:1/R = C16 was found to be LB-specific and was not present in the host gastrodermal cell cytoplasm. Furthermore, the acyl pool profiles of the individual LB lipid species were more similar, but not equal to, those of the host gastrodermal cells in which they were located, indicating partially autonomous lipid metabolism in these LBs. Nevertheless, given the overall similarity in the host gastrodermal cell and LB lipid profiles, these data suggest that a significant portion of the LB lipids may be of host coral origin. Finally, lipid profiles of the in hospite Symbiodinium populations were significantly distinct from those of the cultured Symbiodinium, potentially suggesting a host regulation effect that may be fundamental to lipid metabolism in endosymbiotic associations involving clade C Symbiodinium.

  15. A Compartmental Comparison of Major Lipid Species in a Coral-Symbiodinium Endosymbiosis: Evidence that the Coral Host Regulates Lipogenesis of Its Cytosolic Lipid Bodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Hung-Kai; Song, Shin-Ni; Wang, Li-Hsueh; Mayfield, Anderson B; Chen, Yi-Jyun; Chen, Wan-Nan U; Chen, Chii-Shiarng

    2015-01-01

    The lipid body (LB) formation in the host coral gastrodermal cell cytoplasm is a hallmark of the coral-Symbiodinium endosymbiosis, and such lipid-based entities are not found in endosymbiont-free cnidarian cells. Therefore, the elucidation of lipogenesis regulation in LBs and how it is related to the lipid metabolism of the host and endosymbiont could provide direct insight to understand the symbiosis mechanism. Herein, the lipid composition of host cells of the stony coral Euphyllia glabrescens, as well as that of their cytoplasmic LBs and in hospite Symbiodinium populations, was examined by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS), and six major lipid species were identified: wax esters, sterol esters, triacylglycerols, cholesterols, free fatty acids, and phospholipids. Their concentrations differed significantly between host coral cells, LBs, and Symbiodinium, suggesting compartmental regulation. WE were only present in the host coral and were particularly highly concentrated in LBs. Amongst the four species of WE, the monoene R = C18:1/R = C16 was found to be LB-specific and was not present in the host gastrodermal cell cytoplasm. Furthermore, the acyl pool profiles of the individual LB lipid species were more similar, but not equal to, those of the host gastrodermal cells in which they were located, indicating partially autonomous lipid metabolism in these LBs. Nevertheless, given the overall similarity in the host gastrodermal cell and LB lipid profiles, these data suggest that a significant portion of the LB lipids may be of host coral origin. Finally, lipid profiles of the in hospite Symbiodinium populations were significantly distinct from those of the cultured Symbiodinium, potentially suggesting a host regulation effect that may be fundamental to lipid metabolism in endosymbiotic associations involving clade C Symbiodinium.

  16. Primary Life Stage Boron Isotope and Trace Elements Incorporation in Aposymbiotic Acropora millepora Coral under Ocean Acidification and Warming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry C. Wu

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Early-life stages of reef-building corals are vital to coral existence and reef maintenance. It is therefore crucial to study juvenile coral response to future climate change pressures. Moreover, corals are known to be reliable recorders of environmental conditions in their skeletal materials. Aposymbiotic Acropora millepora larvae were cultured in different seawater temperature (27 and 29°C and pCO2 (390 and 750 μatm conditions to understand the impacts of “end of century” ocean acidification (OA and ocean warming (OW conditions on skeletal morphology and geochemistry. The experimental conditions impacted primary polyp juvenile coral skeletal morphology and growth resulting in asymmetric translucent appearances with brittle skeleton features. The impact of OA resulted in microstructure differences with decreased precipitation or lengthening of fasciculi and disorganized aragonite crystals that led to more concentrations of centers of calcifications. The coral skeletal δ11B composition measured by laser ablation MC-ICP-MS was significantly affected by pCO2 (p = 0.0024 and water temperature (p = 1.46 × 10−5. Reconstructed pH of the primary polyp skeleton using the δ11B proxy suggests a difference in coral calcification site and seawater pH consistent with previously observed coral pH up-regulation. Similarly, trace element results measured by laser ablation ICP-MS indicate the impact of pCO2. Primary polyp juvenile Sr/Ca ratio indicates a bias in reconstructed sea surface temperature (SST under higher pCO2 conditions. Coral microstructure content changes (center of calcification and fasciculi due to OA possibly contributed to the variability in B/Ca ratios. Our results imply that increasing OA and OW may lead to coral acclimation issues and species-specific inaccuracies of the commonly used Sr/Ca-SST proxy.

  17. Assessing Coral Community Recovery from Coral Bleaching by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Assessing Coral Community Recovery from Coral Bleaching by Recruitment in Two Reserves in Kenya. Visram S., Mwaura J. and Obura D.O.. CORDIO East Africa (Coastal Oceans, Research and Development in the Indian Ocean), P.O. Box 10135. Mombasa 80101 Kenya. Keywords: Coral Bleaching, Coral Recruitment, ...

  18. Physical Predictors of Elite Skeleton Start Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colyer, Steffi L; Stokes, Keith A; Bilzon, James L J; Cardinale, Marco; Salo, Aki I T

    2017-01-01

    An extensive battery of physical tests is typically employed to evaluate athletic status and/or development, often resulting in a multitude of output variables. The authors aimed to identify independent physical predictors of elite skeleton start performance to overcome the general problem of practitioners employing multiple tests with little knowledge of their predictive utility. Multiple 2-d testing sessions were undertaken by 13 high-level skeleton athletes across a 24-wk training season and consisted of flexibility, dry-land push-track, sprint, countermovement-jump, and leg-press tests. To reduce the large number of output variables to independent factors, principal-component analysis (PCA) was conducted. The variable most strongly correlated to each component was entered into a stepwise multiple-regression analysis, and K-fold validation assessed model stability. PCA revealed 3 components underlying the physical variables: sprint ability, lower-limb power, and strength-power characteristics. Three variables that represented these components (unresisted 15-m sprint time, 0-kg jump height, and leg-press force at peak power, respectively) significantly contributed (P performance (15-m sled velocity). Finally, the K-fold validation revealed the model to be stable (predicted vs actual R2 = .77; 1.97% standard error of estimate). Only 3 physical-test scores were needed to obtain a valid and stable prediction of skeleton start ability. This method of isolating independent physical variables underlying performance could improve the validity and efficiency of athlete monitoring, potentially benefitting sport scientists, coaches, and athletes alike.

  19. The CORALS Connection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plankis, Brian; Klein, Carolyn

    2010-01-01

    The Ocean, Reefs, Aquariums, Literacy, and Stewardship (CORALS) research program helps students connect global environmental issues to local concerns and personal choices. During the 18-week program, students strengthen their understanding of coral reef decline through a classroom aquarium activity, communicate with science experts, and create…

  20. Fidelity of the Sr/Ca proxy in recording ocean temperature in the western Atlantic coral Siderastrea siderea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuffner, Ilsa B.; Roberts, Kelsey E.; Flannery, Jennifer A.; Morrison, Jennifer M.; Richey, Julie N.

    2017-01-01

    Massive corals provide a useful archive of environmental variability, but careful testing of geochemical proxies in corals is necessary to validate the relationship between each proxy and environmental parameter throughout the full range of conditions experienced by the recording organisms. Here we use samples from a coral-growth study to test the hypothesis that Sr/Ca in the coral Siderastrea siderea accurately records sea-surface temperature (SST) in the subtropics (Florida, USA) along 350 km of reef tract. We test calcification rate, measured via buoyant weight, and linear extension (LE) rate, estimated with Alizarin Red-S staining, as predictors of variance in the Sr/Ca records of 39 individual S. siderea corals grown at four outer-reef locations next to in-situ temperature loggers during two, year-long periods. We found that corals with calcification rates quality-control indicator during sample and drill-path selection when using long cores for SST paleoreconstruction. For our corals that passed this quality control step, the Sr/Ca-SST proxy performed well in estimating mean annual temperature across three sites spanning 350 km of the Florida reef tract. However, there was some evidence that extreme temperature stress in 2010 (cold snap) and 2011 (SST above coral-bleaching threshold) may have caused the corals not to record the temperature extremes. Known stress events could be avoided during modern calibrations of paleoproxies.Plain Language SummaryCoral skeletons are used to decipher past environmental conditions in the ocean because they live for centuries and produce annual growth bands much like tree rings. Along with measuring coral growth rates in the past, coral skeletons can be chemically sampled to get even more detailed information, like past seawater temperatures. In this study we tested the validity of the strontium-to-calcium (Sr/Ca) temperature proxy in the Massive Starlet Coral (Siderastrea siderea) by sampling 39 corals that were grown in the

  1. Deep-sea coral aragonite as a recorder for the neodymium isotopic composition of seawater

    OpenAIRE

    de Flierdt, Tina van; Robinson, Laura F.; Adkins, Jess F

    2010-01-01

    Deep-sea corals have been shown to be useful archives of rapid changes in ocean chemistry during the last glacial cycle. Their aragonitic skeleton can be absolutely dated by U–Th data, freeing radiocarbon to be used as a water-mass proxy. For certain species of deep-sea corals, the growth rate allows time resolution that is comparable to ice cores. An additional proxy is needed to exploit this opportunity and turn radiocarbon data into rates of ocean overturning in the past. Neodymium iso...

  2. Core crystallization and silicate-metal mixing in the parent body of the IVA iron and stony-iron meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Edward R. D.; Haack, Henning; McCoy, Timothy J.

    1996-05-01

    We have analyzed metallic and silicate phases in the IVA iron meteorites and two related stony irons, Steinbach and São João Nepomuceno. Analyses of bulk metal phases in the two stony irons using INAA show that they plot as close to the chemical trends within group IVA as most IVA irons, indicating a common source. Our fractional crystallization models for the IVA chemical trends suggest that the irons crystallized from a metallic melt that initially contained 2.5 ± 1 wt% S. After S concentrations in the liquid reached 6 wt%, liquid trapping during crystallization increased the apparent distribution coefficient for S, as in group IIIAB. Compositions of the metal fractions in Steinbach and São João Nepomuceno match the calculated solid compositions after 50 ± 10% and 80 ± 10%, respectively, of the metallic melt had crystallized. We confidently conclude that the IVA irons and metal in the two stony irons were derived from the core of a single asteroid that fractionally crystallized. The wide range of metallographic cooling rates of IVA irons cannot result from crystallization in isolated pools in one or more bodies, as some authors have argued. Large depletions of Ga, Ge, and other moderately volatile elements in group IVA are unlikely to result from planetary processes; they may have been inherited from chondritic precursor material. The two IVA stony irons contain up to 60 vol% of a unique, coarse-grained mixture of tridymite, orthobronzite, and clinobronzite. Silicate-metal textures resemble those in rounded-olivine pallasites; both may result from the depression of cumulate silicates into underlying molten S-rich metal. Two IVA irons contain rare plate-like, silica crystals up to 10 mm long, but these occurrences seem unrelated to the stony-iron silicates. Because of the difficulty in forming the stony irons in an isolated, slowly cooling asteroid, we infer that they may have formed during the breakup and reassembly event invoked by Haack et al. (1995) to

  3. Use of scleractinian corals to indicate marine pollution in the northern Gulf of Aqaba, Jordan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barakat, S A; Al-Rousan, S; Al-Trabeen, M S

    2015-02-01

    The actual and fatal concentrations of selected heavy metals, including cadmium, cobalt, copper, lead, nickel, and zinc in corals from the Gulf of Aqaba were determined. Several living coral samples of different species (e.g., Porites) were collected from shallow depths (of about 5 m) at a number of sites along the Jordanian Gulf of Aqaba coast. The coral samples were collected using either a pneumatic diamond drill corer (for Porites) or a hammer and chisel (for other branched species). Some of the corals that had been collected were analyzed for heavy metals using atomic absorption spectrometry, and other samples were used in incubation experiments. The heavy metal concentrations were determined separately in the coral skeleton and the tissue layer. Heavy metal concentrations have not previously been determined in corals from the Gulf of Aqaba. We conclude that corals are suitable for use as proxy tools for assessing environmental pollution (i.e., they are bioindicators) in the Gulf of Aqaba and the Red Sea. Therefore, this study provides useful information on the degree of heavy metal contamination in the study area.

  4. The genetics of colony form and function in Caribbean Acropora corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemond, Elizabeth M; Kaluziak, Stefan T; Vollmer, Steven V

    2014-12-17

    Colonial reef-building corals have evolved a broad spectrum of colony morphologies based on coordinated asexual reproduction of polyps on a secreted calcium carbonate skeleton. Though cnidarians have been shown to possess and use similar developmental genes to bilaterians during larval development and polyp formation, little is known about genetic regulation of colony morphology in hard corals. We used RNA-seq to evaluate transcriptomic differences between functionally distinct regions of the coral (apical branch tips and branch bases) in two species of Caribbean Acropora, the staghorn coral, A. cervicornis, and the elkhorn coral, A. palmata. Transcriptome-wide gene profiles differed significantly between different parts of the coral colony as well as between species. Genes showing differential expression between branch tips and bases were involved in developmental signaling pathways, such as Wnt, Notch, and BMP, as well as pH regulation, ion transport, extracellular matrix production and other processes. Differences both within colonies and between species identify a relatively small number of genes that may contribute to the distinct "staghorn" versus "elkhorn" morphologies of these two sister species. The large number of differentially expressed genes supports a strong division of labor between coral branch tips and branch bases. Genes involved in growth of mature Acropora colonies include the classical signaling pathways associated with development of cnidarian larvae and polyps as well as morphological determination in higher metazoans.

  5. Epigenome-associated phenotypic acclimatization to ocean acidification in a reef-building coral

    KAUST Repository

    Liew, Yi Jin

    2017-09-14

    Over the last century, the anthropogenic production of CO2 has led to warmer (+0.74 C) and more acidic (-0.1 pH) oceans, resulting in increasingly frequent and severe mass bleaching events worldwide that precipitate global coral reef decline. To mitigate this decline, proposals to augment the stress tolerance of corals through genetic and non-genetic means have been gaining traction. Work on model systems has shown that environmentally induced alterations in DNA methylation can lead to phenotypic acclimatization. While DNA methylation has been observed in corals, its potential role in phenotypic plasticity has not yet been described. Here, we show that, similar to findings in mice, DNA methylation significantly reduces spurious transcription in the Red Sea coral Stylophora pistillata, suggesting the evolutionary conservation of this essential mechanism in corals. Furthermore, we find that DNA methylation also reduces transcriptional noise by fine-tuning the expression of highly expressed genes. Analysis of DNA methylation patterns of corals subjected to long-term pH stress showed widespread changes in pathways regulating cell cycle and body size. Correspondingly, we found significant increases in cell and polyp sizes that resulted in more porous skeletons, supporting the maintenance of linear extension rates under conditions of reduced calcification. These findings suggest an epigenetic component in phenotypic acclimatization, providing corals with an additional mechanism to cope with climate change.

  6. Review on Association Between Corals and Their Symbiotic Microorganisms From the Ecology and Biotechnology Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zahra Amini Khoei

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: Corals have a diversity of prokaryotic communities as an internal or external symbiotic . This review will examine the association between corals and their symbiotic microorganisms from the ecology and biotechnology perspective. Material and Methods: In this study, articles were examined which indexed in Pubmed, Science Direct, Google Scholar and Scirus databases. Keywords we used included coral, symbiotic microorganisms, ecology, and biotechnology. Finally, overall of 120 articles and reports, 103 articles were evaluated by eliminating the same articles. Results: The Corals symbiotic microorganisms stay on in the ecological niches such as the surface mucus layer, tissue and their skeleton. They play role in the cycle of sulfur, nitrogen fixation, production of antimicrobial compounds and protect corals against pathogens. Many bioactive compounds which attributed to invertebrates such as sponges and corals in fact they are produced by symbiotic bacteria. Various metabolites produced by these microorganisms can be used as medicine. Five screening strategies including conventional screening, met genomics, genomics, combinatorial biosynthesis, and synthetic biology are used for marine microbial natural products discovery and development. Conclusion: According to the collected material we can be concluded that, the ecological studies about the natural association between corals and their symbiotic microorganisms were technological prerequisite for biomedical research and they make clear the road to attainment to bioactive compounds in fauna. Also, in the first step, it is recommended that modern technology and advanced screening methods used to identification of marine organisms and then to identify secondary metabolites among them.

  7. Skeleton-Based Abnormal Gait Detection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trong-Nguyen Nguyen

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Human gait analysis plays an important role in musculoskeletal disorder diagnosis. Detecting anomalies in human walking, such as shuffling gait, stiff leg or unsteady gait, can be difficult if the prior knowledge of such a gait pattern is not available. We propose an approach for detecting abnormal human gait based on a normal gait model. Instead of employing the color image, silhouette, or spatio-temporal volume, our model is created based on human joint positions (skeleton in time series. We decompose each sequence of normal gait images into gait cycles. Each human instant posture is represented by a feature vector which describes relationships between pairs of bone joints located in the lower body. Such vectors are then converted into codewords using a clustering technique. The normal human gait model is created based on multiple sequences of codewords corresponding to different gait cycles. In the detection stage, a gait cycle with normality likelihood below a threshold, which is determined automatically in the training step, is assumed as an anomaly. The experimental results on both marker-based mocap data and Kinect skeleton show that our method is very promising in distinguishing normal and abnormal gaits with an overall accuracy of 90.12%.

  8. Skeletonized Least Squares Wave Equation Migration

    KAUST Repository

    Zhan, Ge

    2010-10-17

    The theory for skeletonized least squares wave equation migration (LSM) is presented. The key idea is, for an assumed velocity model, the source‐side Green\\'s function and the geophone‐side Green\\'s function are computed by a numerical solution of the wave equation. Only the early‐arrivals of these Green\\'s functions are saved and skeletonized to form the migration Green\\'s function (MGF) by convolution. Then the migration image is obtained by a dot product between the recorded shot gathers and the MGF for every trial image point. The key to an efficient implementation of iterative LSM is that at each conjugate gradient iteration, the MGF is reused and no new finitedifference (FD) simulations are needed to get the updated migration image. It is believed that this procedure combined with phase‐encoded multi‐source technology will allow for the efficient computation of wave equation LSM images in less time than that of conventional reverse time migration (RTM).

  9. Mineralization of the Sea Urchin Skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilt, F.

    2001-12-01

    The sea urchin possess a calcareous skeleton composed of over 99% magnesian calcite,an enveloping extracellular matrix, and an occluded protein matrix. The most intensively studied skeletal element is the spicule of the embryo. At the 32 cell stage of development a cohort of 4 cells becomes irrevocably dedicated to spicule formation. At the early gastrula stage the descendants of these founder cells form the primary mesenchyme (PMC). The PMCs fuse to form a multinucleated syncytium connected by cytoplasmic cables, and the calcitic skeleton is formed within these cables. Our primary concern is with the cellular and molecular mechanisms that support the formation of the mineralized spicules. The import of calcium into the PMCs results in appearance of intracellular vesicles containing precipitated calcium, which is neither very stable nor birefringent, and could be amorphous. The precipitated calcium is vectorially secreted into an extracellular space. This space is almost completely enclosed by cytoplasmic strands, and the mineral is encased in an extracellular matrix. Proteins destined for the extracellular matrix, and for inclusion in the spicule, are present in the Golgi membranes and in small intracellular vesicles. These vesicles apparently deliver the matrix proteins to the growing spicule. Our current view is that the matrix molecules are much more than a passive armature, but are actively involved in precipitation, secretion, and organization of the mineral phase.

  10. Skeleton-Based Abnormal Gait Detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Trong-Nguyen; Huynh, Huu-Hung; Meunier, Jean

    2016-10-26

    Human gait analysis plays an important role in musculoskeletal disorder diagnosis. Detecting anomalies in human walking, such as shuffling gait, stiff leg or unsteady gait, can be difficult if the prior knowledge of such a gait pattern is not available. We propose an approach for detecting abnormal human gait based on a normal gait model. Instead of employing the color image, silhouette, or spatio-temporal volume, our model is created based on human joint positions (skeleton) in time series. We decompose each sequence of normal gait images into gait cycles. Each human instant posture is represented by a feature vector which describes relationships between pairs of bone joints located in the lower body. Such vectors are then converted into codewords using a clustering technique. The normal human gait model is created based on multiple sequences of codewords corresponding to different gait cycles. In the detection stage, a gait cycle with normality likelihood below a threshold, which is determined automatically in the training step, is assumed as an anomaly. The experimental results on both marker-based mocap data and Kinect skeleton show that our method is very promising in distinguishing normal and abnormal gaits with an overall accuracy of 90.12%.

  11. Skeletal metastasis: the effect on immature skeleton

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ogden, J.A.; Ogden, D.A.

    1982-12-01

    The unique opportunity to study the entire appendicular skeleton of a child who died from metastatic angiosarcoma allowed detailed assessment of radiographically evident involvement. Virtually every portion of the appendicular skeleton had evidence of metastatic disease. However, the extent of involvement was extremely variable, especially when contralateral regions were assessed. The most likely region of metastasis, the metaphysis, is normally a fenestrated cortex of woven bone in the young child, rather than a well demarcated cortex formed by osteon (lamellar) bone, as it is in the adult. The pattern of destruction is such that less extensive areas may be involved before becoming radiographically evident, and trabecular bone involvement may be evident even without cortical damage. The metaphyseal metastatic spread supports the concept of arterial hematogeneous dissemination, comparable to osteomyelitis in the child. Pathologic metaphyseal fractures involved both proximal humeri; the fracture also extended along a portion of the methaphyseal-physeal interface in one humerus. In one distal femur the physis readily separated from the metaphysis; this was a nondisplaced type 1 growth mechanism injury.

  12. The potential ocean acidification event at the Triassic-Jurassic boundary: Constraining carbonate chemistry using the presence of corals and coral reefs in the fossil record

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martindale, R. C.; Berelson, W.; Corsetti, F. A.; Bottjer, D. J.; West, A.

    2011-12-01

    Ocean acidification associated with emplacement of the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province (CAMP) has been hypothesized as a kill mechanism for the Triassic-Jurassic (T-J) mass extinction (~200Ma), but few direct proxies for ancient ocean acidity are available. Here, we suggest that the presence of fossil corals and coral reefs can constrain palaeocean acidity. Modern scleractinian corals lose the ability to biomineralize a robust skeleton below aragonite saturation states (ΩArag) of 2 and modern shallow water coral reefs are only found in ΩArag > 3; we use these minima to constrain ancient ocean carbonate chemistry when corals or coral reefs are preserved in the fossil record. Atmospheric pCO2 reconstructions are combined with the coral ΩArag limitations to calculate the total dissolved inorganic carbon (TCO2) in the Late Triassic Ocean, which is a measure of the buffering capacity or ocean sensitivity to acidification. Our results suggest that Late Triassic TCO2 values were low to moderate (2000-3000 μmol/kg) such that the pCO2 increases across the T-J boundary would have depressed saturation state to the point where coral biomineralization would have been challenging (ΩArag CAMP-related T-J pCO2 increases suggest that aragonite undersaturation is plausible and in extreme cases calcite undersaturation is possible. Thus, a short but extreme acidification in an ocean with a low TCO2 concentration could occur and would satisfactorily explain the significant extinction of calcareous organisms, the coral gap, and possibly the T-J carbonate crisis.

  13. Metabarcoding dietary analysis of coral dwelling predatory fish demonstrates the minor contribution of coral mutualists to their highly partitioned, generalist diet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthieu Leray

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the role of predators in food webs can be challenging in highly diverse predator/prey systems composed of small cryptic species. DNA based dietary analysis can supplement predator removal experiments and provide high resolution for prey identification. Here we use a metabarcoding approach to provide initial insights into the diet and functional role of coral-dwelling predatory fish feeding on small invertebrates. Fish were collected in Moorea (French Polynesia where the BIOCODE project has generated DNA barcodes for numerous coral associated invertebrate species. Pyrosequencing data revealed a total of 292 Operational Taxonomic Units (OTU in the gut contents of the arc-eye hawkfish (Paracirrhites arcatus, the flame hawkfish (Neocirrhites armatus and the coral croucher (Caracanthus maculatus. One hundred forty-nine (51% of them had species-level matches in reference libraries (>98% similarity while 76 additional OTUs (26% could be identified to higher taxonomic levels. Decapods that have a mutualistic relationship with Pocillopora and are typically dominant among coral branches, represent a minor contribution of the predators’ diets. Instead, predators mainly consumed transient species including pelagic taxa such as copepods, chaetognaths and siphonophores suggesting non random feeding behavior. We also identified prey species known to have direct negative interactions with stony corals, such as Hapalocarcinus sp, a gall crab considered a coral parasite, as well as species of vermetid snails known for their deleterious effects on coral growth. Pocillopora DNA accounted for 20.8% and 20.1% of total number of sequences in the guts of the flame hawkfish and coral croucher but it was not detected in the guts of the arc-eye hawkfish. Comparison of diets among the three fishes demonstrates remarkable partitioning with nearly 80% of prey items consumed by only one predator. Overall, the taxonomic resolution provided by the metabarcoding

  14. [Okuda wooden human skeleton made in Edo era, Japan].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baba, Hisao

    2006-03-01

    Probably in 1820 (late Edo era), a human skeleton for medical education was carved from cypress wood, based on a criminal's skeleton under the supervision of a medical doctor, Banri Okuda in Osaka City. The skeleton is called "Okuda wooden skeleton" and is now housed in the National Science Museum, Tokyo. The bones can be assembled into a skeleton by metal pivots or bamboo sticks. The thorax and pelvis were made of several pieces of wood and combined together, respectively. By and large, the wooden skeleton shows morphological characteristics usually seen in early middle-aged females of the Edo era. But the claviculae, distal ends of the femora, and the patellae are exceptionally larger than those of a female, implying that these bones of the original skeleton had already been lost or were deformed before the wooden skeleton was made. Actually the wooden skeleton might not have been used for medical education but rather for the promotion of European medicine, which was gradually developing in the Edo era.

  15. Radiocarbon Based Ages and Growth Rates: Hawaiian Deep Sea Corals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roark, E B; Guilderson, T P; Dunbar, R B; Ingram, B L

    2006-01-13

    The radial growth rates and ages of three different groups of Hawaiian deep-sea 'corals' were determined using radiocarbon measurements. Specimens of Corallium secundum, Gerardia sp., and Leiopathes glaberrima, were collected from 450 {+-} 40 m at the Makapuu deep-sea coral bed using a submersible (PISCES V). Specimens of Antipathes dichotoma were collected at 50 m off Lahaina, Maui. The primary source of carbon to the calcitic C. secundum skeleton is in situ dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC). Using bomb {sup 14}C time markers we calculate radial growth rates of {approx} 170 {micro}m y{sup -1} and ages of 68-75 years on specimens as tall as 28 cm of C. secundum. Gerardia sp., A. dichotoma, and L. glaberrima have proteinaceous skeletons and labile particulate organic carbon (POC) is their primary source of architectural carbon. Using {sup 14}C we calculate a radial growth rate of 15 {micro}m y{sup -1} and an age of 807 {+-} 30 years for a live collected Gerardia sp., showing that these organisms are extremely long lived. Inner and outer {sup 14}C measurements on four sub-fossil Gerardia spp. samples produce similar growth rate estimates (range 14-45 {micro}m y{sup -1}) and ages (range 450-2742 years) as observed for the live collected sample. Similarly, with a growth rate of < 10 {micro}m y{sup -1} and an age of {approx}2377 years, L. glaberrima at the Makapuu coral bed, is also extremely long lived. In contrast, the shallow-collected A. dichotoma samples yield growth rates ranging from 130 to 1,140 {micro}m y{sup -1}. These results show that Hawaiian deep-sea corals grow more slowly and are older than previously thought.

  16. Heavy metal contents in growth bands of Porites corals: Record of anthropogenic and human developments from the Jordanian Gulf of Aqaba

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Al-Rousan, Saber A. [Marine Science Station, University of Jordan and Yarmouk University, P.O. Box 195, Aqaba 77110 (Jordan)], E-mail: s.rousan@ju.edu.jo; Al-Shloul, Rashid N. [Department of Earth and Environmental Science, Faculty of Science, Yarmouk University, Irbid 21163 (Jordan); Al-Horani, Fuad A. [Marine Science Station, University of Jordan and Yarmouk University, P.O. Box 195, Aqaba 77110 (Jordan); Abu-Hilal, Ahmad H. [Department of Earth and Environmental Science, Faculty of Science, Yarmouk University, Irbid 21163 (Jordan)

    2007-12-15

    In order to assess pollutants and impact of environmental changes in the coastal region of the Jordanian Gulf of Aqaba, concentrations of six metals were traced through variations in 5 years growth bands sections of recent Porties coral skeleton. X-radiography showed annual growth band patterns extending back to the year 1925. Baseline metal concentrations in Porites corals were established using 35 years-long metal record from late Holocene coral (deposited in pristine environment) and coral from reef that is least exposed to pollution in the marine reserve in the Gulf of Aqaba. The skeleton samples of the collected corals were acid digested and analyzed for their Cd, Cu, Fe, Mn, Pb and Zn content using Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (FAAS). All metal profiles (except Fe and Zn) recorded the same metal signature from recent coral (1925-2005) in which low steady baseline levels were displayed in growth bands older than 1965, similar to those obtained from fossil and unpolluted corals. Most metals showed dramatic increase (ranging from 17% to 300%) in growth band sections younger than 1965 suggesting an extensive contamination of the coastal area since the mid sixties. This date represents the beginning of a period that witnessed increasing coastal activities, constructions and urbanization. This has produced a significant reduction in coral skeletal extension rates. Results from this study strongly suggest that Porites corals have a high tendency to accumulate heavy metals in their skeletons and therefore can serve as proxy tools to monitor and record environmental pollution (bioindicators) in the Gulf of Aqaba.

  17. Coral Carbonic Anhydrases: Regulation by Ocean Acidification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zoccola, Didier; Innocenti, Alessio; Bertucci, Anthony; Tambutté, Eric; Supuran, Claudiu T; Tambutté, Sylvie

    2016-06-03

    Global change is a major threat to the oceans, as it implies temperature increase and acidification. Ocean acidification (OA) involving decreasing pH and changes in seawater carbonate chemistry challenges the capacity of corals to form their skeletons. Despite the large number of studies that have investigated how rates of calcification respond to ocean acidification scenarios, comparatively few studies tackle how ocean acidification impacts the physiological mechanisms that drive calcification itself. The aim of our paper was to determine how the carbonic anhydrases, which play a major role in calcification, are potentially regulated by ocean acidification. For this we measured the effect of pH on enzyme activity of two carbonic anhydrase isoforms that have been previously characterized in the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata. In addition we looked at gene expression of these enzymes in vivo. For both isoforms, our results show (1) a change in gene expression under OA (2) an effect of OA and temperature on carbonic anhydrase activity. We suggest that temperature increase could counterbalance the effect of OA on enzyme activity. Finally we point out that caution must, thus, be taken when interpreting transcriptomic data on carbonic anhydrases in ocean acidification and temperature stress experiments, as the effect of these stressors on the physiological function of CA will depend both on gene expression and enzyme activity.

  18. Coral Carbonic Anhydrases: Regulation by Ocean Acidification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Didier Zoccola

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Global change is a major threat to the oceans, as it implies temperature increase and acidification. Ocean acidification (OA involving decreasing pH and changes in seawater carbonate chemistry challenges the capacity of corals to form their skeletons. Despite the large number of studies that have investigated how rates of calcification respond to ocean acidification scenarios, comparatively few studies tackle how ocean acidification impacts the physiological mechanisms that drive calcification itself. The aim of our paper was to determine how the carbonic anhydrases, which play a major role in calcification, are potentially regulated by ocean acidification. For this we measured the effect of pH on enzyme activity of two carbonic anhydrase isoforms that have been previously characterized in the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata. In addition we looked at gene expression of these enzymes in vivo. For both isoforms, our results show (1 a change in gene expression under OA (2 an effect of OA and temperature on carbonic anhydrase activity. We suggest that temperature increase could counterbalance the effect of OA on enzyme activity. Finally we point out that caution must, thus, be taken when interpreting transcriptomic data on carbonic anhydrases in ocean acidification and temperature stress experiments, as the effect of these stressors on the physiological function of CA will depend both on gene expression and enzyme activity.

  19. Coral Skeletal Records of Water Quality Change in Mesoamerica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carilli, J.; Prouty, N.; Hughen, K.; Norris, R. D.

    2007-12-01

    Corals are thought to incorporate metals into their aragonitic skeletons in direct proportion to those found in the surrounding seawater. As they can live for hundreds of years, they are unique recorders of water quality over anthropogenic time scales. We utilized cores from the massive coral Montastrea faveolata from four locations across the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, the second largest barrier reef on the planet. The sites were chosen to span an inferred gradient of runoff, from the high runoff Sapodilla Cayes and Cayos Cochinos to Utila and Turneffe Atoll, the farthest from major runoff effects. Surface samples of corals at all sites confirm that Turneffe is the least runoff-affected site. Annual samples of coral skeletal material were separated and cleaned using a multi-step leaching procedure to remove surface and interstitial contamination. 18 metals were then measured using an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer and normalized to calcium. Ba/Ca, a proxy for sedimentation, shows similar patterns for annual samples from the Sapodilla Cayes and Cayos Cochinos. At both sites, background Ba/Ca increases between ~1950-1970, indicating an overall increase in the amount of sediment reaching the reefs. Also, large spikes in the record may record massive runoff events from storms tracking overland, such as Hurricane Fifi in 1974. 100-150 year long records of Ba/Ca and other metals from these four sites will be compared to investigate changes in water quality over time and location on the reef.

  20. Live tissue imaging shows reef corals elevate pH under their calcifying tissue relative to seawater.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Venn

    Full Text Available The threat posed to coral reefs by changes in seawater pH and carbonate chemistry (ocean acidification raises the need for a better mechanistic understanding of physiological processes linked to coral calcification. Current models of coral calcification argue that corals elevate extracellular pH under their calcifying tissue relative to seawater to promote skeleton formation, but pH measurements taken from the calcifying tissue of living, intact corals have not been achieved to date. We performed live tissue imaging of the reef coral Stylophora pistillata to determine extracellular pH under the calcifying tissue and intracellular pH in calicoblastic cells. We worked with actively calcifying corals under flowing seawater and show that extracellular pH (pHe under the calicoblastic epithelium is elevated by ∼0.5 and ∼0.2 pH units relative to the surrounding seawater in light and dark conditions respectively. By contrast, the intracellular pH (pHi of the calicoblastic epithelium remains stable in the light and dark. Estimates of aragonite saturation states derived from our data indicate the elevation in subcalicoblastic pHe favour calcification and may thus be a critical step in the calcification process. However, the observed close association of the calicoblastic epithelium with the underlying crystals suggests that the calicoblastic cells influence the growth of the coral skeleton by other processes in addition to pHe modification. The procedure used in the current study provides a novel, tangible approach for future investigations into these processes and the impact of environmental change on the cellular mechanisms underpinning coral calcification.

  1. Growth and Gonad Changes in Stony Sea Urchin, Paracentrotus Lividus (Lamark, 1816) Fed Artificially Formulated Feed and Benthic Macrophyte Diet

    OpenAIRE

    Tomšić, Sanja; Conides, Alexis J.; Aničić, Ivica

    2015-01-01

    This study reported the efficiency of artificially formulated feed and benthic macrophyte diet on growth and gonad development of cultured stony sea urchin, Paracentrotus lividus (Lamark, 1816). An initial sample of 720 individual urchins was gathered in coastal area of SE Adriatic, near Dubrovnik, Croatia and for the purposes of the experiment, was held in a flow-through system. Sea urchin were fed four test diets A, B, C and D. Diet A consisted of seaweeds collected in the natural habitat o...

  2. Environmental Records from Great Barrier Reef Corals: inshore versus offshore drivers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walther, Benjamin D; Kingsford, Michael J; McCulloch, Malcolm T

    2013-01-01

    The biogenic structures of stationary organisms can be effective recorders of environmental fluctuations. These proxy records of environmental change are preserved as geochemical signals in the carbonate skeletons of scleractinian corals and are useful for reconstructions of temporal and spatial fluctuations in the physical and chemical environments of coral reef ecosystems, including The Great Barrier Reef (GBR). We compared multi-year monitoring of water temperature and dissolved elements with analyses of chemical proxies recorded in Porites coral skeletons to identify the divergent mechanisms driving environmental variation at inshore versus offshore reefs. At inshore reefs, water Ba/Ca increased with the onset of monsoonal rains each year, indicating a dominant control of flooding on inshore ambient chemistry. Inshore multi-decadal records of coral Ba/Ca were also highly periodic in response to flood-driven pulses of terrigenous material. In contrast, an offshore reef at the edge of the continental shelf was subject to annual upwelling of waters that were presumed to be richer in Ba during summer months. Regular pulses of deep cold water were delivered to the reef as indicated by in situ temperature loggers and coral Ba/Ca. Our results indicate that although much of the GBR is subject to periodic environmental fluctuations, the mechanisms driving variation depend on proximity to the coast. Inshore reefs are primarily influenced by variable freshwater delivery and terrigenous erosion of catchments, while offshore reefs are dominated by seasonal and inter-annual variations in oceanographic conditions that influence the propensity for upwelling. The careful choice of sites can help distinguish between the various factors that promote Ba uptake in corals and therefore increase the utility of corals as monitors of spatial and temporal variation in environmental conditions.

  3. Environmental Records from Great Barrier Reef Corals: inshore versus offshore drivers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin D Walther

    Full Text Available The biogenic structures of stationary organisms can be effective recorders of environmental fluctuations. These proxy records of environmental change are preserved as geochemical signals in the carbonate skeletons of scleractinian corals and are useful for reconstructions of temporal and spatial fluctuations in the physical and chemical environments of coral reef ecosystems, including The Great Barrier Reef (GBR. We compared multi-year monitoring of water temperature and dissolved elements with analyses of chemical proxies recorded in Porites coral skeletons to identify the divergent mechanisms driving environmental variation at inshore versus offshore reefs. At inshore reefs, water Ba/Ca increased with the onset of monsoonal rains each year, indicating a dominant control of flooding on inshore ambient chemistry. Inshore multi-decadal records of coral Ba/Ca were also highly periodic in response to flood-driven pulses of terrigenous material. In contrast, an offshore reef at the edge of the continental shelf was subject to annual upwelling of waters that were presumed to be richer in Ba during summer months. Regular pulses of deep cold water were delivered to the reef as indicated by in situ temperature loggers and coral Ba/Ca. Our results indicate that although much of the GBR is subject to periodic environmental fluctuations, the mechanisms driving variation depend on proximity to the coast. Inshore reefs are primarily influenced by variable freshwater delivery and terrigenous erosion of catchments, while offshore reefs are dominated by seasonal and inter-annual variations in oceanographic conditions that influence the propensity for upwelling. The careful choice of sites can help distinguish between the various factors that promote Ba uptake in corals and therefore increase the utility of corals as monitors of spatial and temporal variation in environmental conditions.

  4. Coral Reefs: Damage Indicators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pascal Saffache

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available IntroductionCovering approximately 1.2 million km2 or 0.25% of the world maritime domain, coral reefs represent the greatest structures formed on the earth’s surface by living creatures.  Although coral has existed for the past billion years, those which cover the seabed in the present day appeared in the Jurassic period (secondary era and develop in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans (SCORE, 1998. Coral reefs support a broad range of marine biodiversity (one quarter of all fish caught...

  5. Risk factors in schizophrenia: the Stony Brook High-Risk Project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weintraub, S

    1987-01-01

    The goals of the Stony Brook High-Risk Project are to identify precursor patterns, environmental stressors, and protective factors that are differentially predictive of psychopathology. In phase I we assessed 219 families and 544 children aged 7-15, including 31 families and 80 children with a schizophrenic parent, 70 families and 154 children with a unipolar depressed parent, 58 families and 134 children with a bipolar parent, and 60 normal control families with 176 children. A 3-year followup was conducted on 84 percent of the sample, and an additional followup is underway. Our data include measures of: (1) psychological functioning of the parents; (2) the environment, including family functioning, marital adjustment, and parenting practices; (3) child adjustment, including peer, or teacher, parent, and self-ratings; (4) early signs or precursors to the development of schizophrenia or affective disorder, including cognitive slippage, attentional deficits, hedonic capacity, depressogenic attributional styles, and subsyndromal affective patterns. Considerable deviance in family functioning, expressed in conflict, marital discord, and parenting skills, was characteristic of the families with an ill parent, and this discord was related to child adjustment. Children with a schizophrenic parent showed multiple and extensive cognitive, attentional, and social impairments, and at the 18+ followup, 22.8 percent of them compared with 9.6 percent of the normal controls were assigned a DSM-III diagnosis.

  6. DPIV Measurements of Olympic Skeleton Athletes

    CERN Document Server

    Leong, Chia Min; Wu, Vicki; Wei, Timothy; Peters, Steve

    2010-01-01

    The Olympic sport of skeleton involves an athlete riding a small sled face first down a bobsled track at speeds up to 130 km/hr. In these races, the difference between gold and missing the medal stand altogether can be hundredths of a second per run. As such, reducing aerodynamic drag through proper body positioning is of first order importance. To better study the flow behavior and to improve the performance of the athletes, we constructed a mock section of a bobsled track which was positioned at the exit of an open loop wind tunnel. DPIV measurements were made along with video recordings of body position to aid the athletes in determining their optimal aerodynamic body position. In the fluid dynamics video shown, the athlete slowly raised his head while DPIV measurements were made behind the helmet in the separated flow region.

  7. The origin of the vertebrate skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pivar, Stuart

    2011-01-01

    The anatomy of the human and other vertebrates has been well described since the days of Leonardo da Vinci and Vesalius. The causative origin of the configuration of the bones and of their shapes and forms has been addressed over the ensuing centuries by such outstanding investigators as Goethe, Von Baer, Gegenbauer, Wilhelm His and D'Arcy Thompson, who sought to apply mechanical principles to morphogenesis. However, no coherent causative model of morphogenesis has ever been presented. This paper presents a causative model for the origin of the vertebrate skeleton, based on the premise that the body is a mosaic enlargement of self-organized patterns engrained in the membrane of the egg cell. Drawings illustrate the proposed hypothetical origin of membrane patterning and the changes in the hydrostatic equilibrium of the cytoplasm that cause topographical deformations resulting in the vertebrate body form.

  8. Skeletonized wave-equation inversion for Q

    KAUST Repository

    Dutta, Gaurav

    2016-09-06

    A wave-equation gradient optimization method is presented that inverts for the subsurface Q distribution by minimizing a skeletonized misfit function ε. Here, ε is the sum of the squared differences between the observed and the predicted peak/centroid frequency shifts of the early-arrivals. The gradient is computed by migrating the observed traces weighted by the frequency-shift residuals. The background Q model is perturbed until the predicted and the observed traces have the same peak frequencies or the same centroid frequencies. Numerical tests show that an improved accuracy of the inverted Q model by wave-equation Q tomography (WQ) leads to a noticeable improvement in the migration image quality.

  9. Static measurements of the resilience of Caribbean coral populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew W. Bruckner

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The progressive downward shift in dominance of key reef building corals, coupled with dramatic increases in macroalgae and other nuisance species, fields of unstable coral rubble ,loss of structural relief, and declines of major functional groups of fishes is a common occurrence throughout the Caribbean today. The incorporation of resilience principles into management is a proposed strategy to reverse this trend and ensure proper functioning of coral reefs under predicted scenarios of climate change, yet ecosystem processes and functions that underlie reef resilience are not fully understood. Rapid assessments using the Atlantic and Gulf Rapid Reef Assessment (AGRRA and the IUCN Resilience Assessment protocol can provide baseline information on reef resilience. A key aspect of these surveys focuses on coral population dynamics, including measures of coral cover, size, partial and whole-colony mortality, condition, and recruitment. One challenge is that these represent static measures involving a single assessment. Without following individual corals over time, it is difficult to determine rates of survival and growth of recruits and adult colonies, and differentiation of juveniles from small remnants of older colonies may not be possible, especially when macroalgal cover is high. To address this limitation, corals assessed in Bonaire in July 2010 were subdivided into two categories: 1 colonies on the reef substrate; and 2 colonies colonizing dead corals and exposed skeletal surfaces of living corals. Coral populations in Bonaire exhibited many features indicative of high resilience, including high coral cover (often 30-50%, high levels of recruitment, and a large number of corals that settled on dead corals and survived to larger size-classes. Overall, the skeletal surfaces of 12 species of corals were colonized by 16 species of corals, with up to 12 settlers on each colony, most (67% on M. annularis (complex skeletons. Nevertheless, completely

  10. Identification of Genes for Synthesis of the Blue Pigment, Biliverdin IXα, in the Blue Coral Heliopora coerulea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hongo, Yuki; Yasuda, Nina; NagaI, Satoshi

    2017-04-01

    Heliopora coerulea is the only species in the subclass Octocorallia that has a crystalline aragonite skeleton. The skeleton has been reported to contain the blue pigment, biliverdin IXα, which is formed by heme oxygenase (HO) during heme decomposition. There is little information regarding gene expression in H. coerulea; therefore, the biosynthesis pathway for biliverdin IXα is poorly understood. To identify the genes related to heme synthesis and degradation, metatranscripts of H. coerulea and its symbiont Symbiodinium spp. were sequenced and separated from the host- and symbiont-derived sequences. From the metatranscriptome analyses, all genes for heme synthesis and three HOs were isolated from the host and symbiont. From our phylogenetic and amino acid analysis, we noted that one of the HO isoforms in the host coral was predicted to possess HO activity. However, biliverdin reductase, which reduces biliverdin to bilirubin, was not identified in the present study. Similarly, biliverdin reductase was not identified in the transcripts of the red coral Corallium rubrum, a species that also belongs to Octocorallia. However, genes related to heme synthesis and HO were found in C. rubrum. We speculate that Heliopora coerulea can produce biliverdin and accumulate it in the skeleton, while red corals and other Octocorallia species cannot. Further information from molecular studies of H. coerulea will provide insights into the synthesis of biliverdin IXα, the blue pigment in the hard crystalline aragonite skeleton, and will be fundamental to future ecological and physiological studies.

  11. Quantifying bamboo coral growth rate nonlinearity with the radiocarbon bomb spike: A new model for paleoceanographic chronology development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frenkel, M. M.; LaVigne, M.; Miller, H. R.; Hill, T. M.; McNichol, A.; Gaylord, M. Lardie

    2017-07-01

    Bamboo corals, long-lived cold water gorgonin octocorals, offer unique paleoceanographic archives of the intermediate ocean. These Isididae corals are characterized by alternating gorgonin nodes and high Mg-calcite internodes, which synchronously extend radially. Bamboo coral calcite internodes have been utilized to obtain geochemical proxy data, however, growth rate uncertainty has made it difficult to construct precise chronologies for these corals. Previous studies have relied upon a single tie point from records of the anthropogenic Δ14C bomb spike preserved in the gorgonin nodes of live-collected corals to calculate a mean radial extension rate for the outer 50 years of skeletal growth. Bamboo coral chronologies are typically constructed by applying this mean extension rate to the entire coral record, assuming constant radial extension with coral age. In this study, we aim to test this underlying assumption by analyzing the organic nodes of six California margin bamboo corals at high enough resolution (bamboo coral taxa and individuals from the California margin, demonstrating a decline in radial extension rate with specimen age and size. To provide a mechanistic basis for these observations, a simple mathematical model was developed based on the assumption of a constant increase in circular cross sectional area with time to quantify this decline in radial extension rate with coral size between chronological tie points. Applying the area-based model to our Δ14C bomb spike time series from individual corals improves chronology accuracy for all live-collected corals with complete Δ14C bomb spikes. Hence, this study provides paleoceanographers utilizing bamboo corals with a method for reducing age model uncertainty within the anthropogenic bomb spike era ( 1957-present). Chronological uncertainty is larger for the earliest portion of coral growth, particularly for skeleton precipitated prior to bomb spike tie points, meaning age estimations for samples living

  12. Coral Reef Guidance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guidance prepared by EPA and Army Corps of Engineers concerning coral reef protection under the Clean Water Act, Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act, Rivers and Harbors Act, and Federal Project Authorities.

  13. All Framing Corals

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The data represent predicted habitat suitability for several taxa of deep-sea corals. Predictions were modeled using a statistical machine-learning algorithm called...

  14. Corals and Sclerosponges

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Records of past climate and ocean environment derived from stable isotope, trace metal, and other measurements made on corals and sclerosponges. Parameter keywords...

  15. Qualitative Comparison of Contraction-Based Curve Skeletonization Methods

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sobiecki, André; Yasan, Haluk C.; Jalba, Andrei C.; Telea, Alexandru C.

    2013-01-01

    In recent years, many new methods have been proposed for extracting curve skeletons of 3D shapes, using a mesh-contraction principle. However, it is still unclear how these methods perform with respect to each other, and with respect to earlier voxel-based skeletonization methods, from the viewpoint

  16. SkelTre : Robust skeleton extraction from imperfect point clouds

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bucksch, A.; Lindenbergh, R.; Menenti, M.

    2010-01-01

    Terrestrial laser scanners capture 3D geometry of real world objects as a point cloud. This paper reports on a new algorithm developed for the skeletonization of a laser scanner point cloud. The skeletonization algorithm proposed in this paper consists of three steps: (i) extraction of a graph from

  17. Raiding the Coral Nurseries?

    OpenAIRE

    Alison M. Jones

    2011-01-01

    A recent shift in the pattern of commercial harvest in the Keppel Island region of the southern inshore Great Barrier Reef raises concern about the depletion of a number of relatively rare restricted range taxa. The shift appears to be driven by demand from the United States (US) for corals for domestic aquaria. Data from the annual status reports from the Queensland Coral Fishery were compared with export trade data to the US from the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (...

  18. Recurrent partial mortality events in winter shape the dynamics of the zooxanthellate coral Oculina patagonica at high latitude in the Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, Eduard; Ribes, Marta; Coma, Rafel

    2017-03-01

    Global warming has many biological effects on corals and plays a central role in the regression of tropical coral reefs; therefore, there is an urgent need to understand how some coral species have adapted to environmental conditions at higher latitudes. We examined the effects of temperature and light on the growth of the zooxanthellate coral Oculina patagonica (Scleractinia, Oculinidae) at the northern limit of its distribution in the eastern Iberian Peninsula (western Mediterranean) by transplanting colonies onto plates and excluding them from space competition over a 4-yr period. Each year, most of the colonies ( 70%) exhibited denuded skeletons with isolated polyps persisting on approximately half of the coral surface area. These recurrent episodes of partial coral mortality occurred in winter, and their severity appeared to be related to colony exposure to cold but not to light. Although O. patagonica exhibited high resistance to stress, coral linear extension did not resume until the coenosarc regenerated. The resumption of linear extension was related to the dissociation of the polyps from the coenosarc and the outstanding regenerative capacity of this species (10.3 mm2 d-1). These biological characteristics allow the species to survive at high latitudes. However, the recurrent and severe pattern of denuded skeletons greatly affects the dynamics of the species and may constrain population growth at high latitudes in the Mediterranean.

  19. Skeleton extraction based on the topology and Snakes model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuanxue Cai

    Full Text Available A new skeleton line extraction method based on topology and flux is proposed by analyzing the distribution characteristics of the gradient vector field in the Snakes model. The distribution characteristics of the skeleton line are accurately obtained by calculating the eigenvalues of the critical points and the flux of the gradient vector field. Then the skeleton lines can be effectively extracted. The results also show that there is no need for the pretreatment or binarization of the target image. The skeleton lines of complex gray images such as optical interference patterns can be effectively extracted by using this method. Compared to traditional methods, this method has many advantages, such as high extraction accuracy and fast processing speed. Keywords: Skeleton, Snakes model, Topology, Photoelasticity image

  20. Analyses of Corallimorpharian Transcriptomes Provide New Perspectives on the Evolution of Calcification in the Scleractinia (Corals).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Mei-Fang; Moya, Aurelie; Ying, Hua; Chen, Chaolun Allen; Cooke, Ira; Ball, Eldon E; Forêt, Sylvain; Miller, David J

    2017-01-01

    Corallimorpharians (coral-like anemones) have a close phylogenetic relationship with scleractinians (hard corals) and can potentially provide novel perspectives on the evolution of biomineralization within the anthozoan subclass Hexacorallia. A survey of the transcriptomes of three representative corallimorpharians led to the identification of homologs of some skeletal organic matrix proteins (SOMPs) previously considered to be restricted to corals.Carbonic anhydrases (CAs), which are ubiquitous proteins involved in CO2 trafficking, are involved in both coral calcification and photosynthesis by endosymbiotic Symbiodinium (zooxanthellae). These multiple roles are assumed to place increased demands on the CA repertoire and have presumably driven the elaboration of the complex CA repertoires typical of corals (note that "corals" are defined here as reef-building Scleractinia). Comparison of the CA inventories of corallimorpharians with those of corals reveals that corals have specifically expanded the secreted and membrane-associated type CAs, whereas similar complexity is observed in the two groups with respect to other CA types.Comparison of the CA complement of the nonsymbiotic corallimorph Corynactis australis with that of Ricordea yuma, a corallimorph which normally hosts Symbiodinium, reveals similar numbers and distribution of CA types and suggests that an expansion of the CA repertoire has been necessary to enable calcification but may not be a requirement to enable symbiosis. Consistent with this idea, preliminary analysis suggests that the CA complexity of zooxanthellate and nonzooxanthellate sea anemones is similar.The comparisons above suggest that although there are relatively few new genes in the skeletal organic matrix of corals (which controls the skeleton deposition process), the evolution of calcification required an expanded repertoire of secreted and membrane-associated CAs. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of

  1. Diversity in skeletal architecture influences biological heterogeneity and Symbiodinium habitat in corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yost, Denise M; Wang, Li-Hsueh; Fan, Tung-Yung; Chen, Chii-Shiarng; Lee, Raymond W; Sogin, Emilia; Gates, Ruth D

    2013-10-01

    Scleractinian corals vary in response to rapid shifts in the marine environment and changes in reef community structure post-disturbance reveal a clear relationship between coral performance and morphology. With exceptions, massive corals are thought to be more tolerant and branching corals more vulnerable to changing environmental conditions, notably thermal stress. The typical responses of massive and branching coral taxa, respectively, are well documented; however, the biological and functional characteristics that underpin this variation are not well understood. We address this gap by comparing multiple biological attributes that are correlated with skeletal architecture in two perforate (having porous skeletal matrices with intercalating tissues) and two imperforate coral species (Montipora aequituberculata, Porites lobata, Pocillopora damicornis, and Seriatopora hystrix) representing three morphotypes. Our results reveal inherent biological heterogeneity among corals and the potential for perforate skeletons to create complex, three-dimensional internal habitats that impact the dynamics of the symbiosis. Patterns of tissue thickness are correlated with the concentration of symbionts within narrow regions of tissue in imperforate corals versus broad distribution throughout the larger tissue area in perforate corals. Attributes of the perforate and environmentally tolerant P. lobata were notable, with tissues ∼5 times thicker than in the sensitive, imperforate species P. damicornis and S. hystrix. Additionally, P. lobata had the lowest baseline levels of superoxide and Symbiodinium that provisioned high levels of energy. Given our observations, we hypothesize that the complexity of the visually obscured internal environment has an impact on host-symbiont dynamics and ultimately on survival, warranting further scientific investigation. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  2. Decoupling of coral skeletal δ13C and solar irradiance over the past millennium caused by the oceanic Suess effect

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Wenfeng; Chen, Xuefei; Wei, Gangjian; Zeng, Ti; Zhao, Jian-xin

    2017-02-01

    Many factors influence the seasonal changes in δ13C levels in coral skeletons; consequently, the climatic and environmental significance of such changes is complicated and controversial. However, it is widely accepted that the secular declining trend of coral δ13C over the past 200 years reflects the changes in the additional flux of anthropogenic CO2 from the atmosphere into the surface oceans. Even so, the centennial-scale variations, and their significance, of coral δ13C before the Industrial Revolution remain unclear. Based on an annually resolved coral δ13C record from the northern South China Sea, the centennial-scale variations of coral δ13C over the past millennium were studied. The coral δ13C and total solar irradiance (TSI) have a significant positive Pearson correlation and coupled variation during the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age, when natural forcing controlled the climate and environment. This covariation suggests that TSI controls coral δ13C by affecting the photosynthetic activity of the endosymbiotic zooxanthellae over centennial timescales. However, there was a decoupling of the coral skeletal δ13C and TSI during the Current Warm Period, the period in which the climate and environment became linked to anthropogenic factors. Instead, coral δ13C levels have a significant Pearson correlation with both the atmospheric CO2 concentration and δ13C levels in atmospheric CO2. The correlation between coral δ13C and atmospheric CO2 suggests that the oceanic 13C Suess effect, caused by the addition of increasing amounts of anthropogenic 12CO2 to the surface ocean, has led to the decoupling of coral δ13C and TSI at the centennial scale.

  3. A coral-eating barnacle, revisited (Cirripedia, Pyrgomatidae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ross, Arnold; Newman, William A.

    1995-01-01

    The coral-eating barnacle Hoekia monticulariae (Gray, 1831), the only internal parasite among the Thoracica described to this day, is characterized by an irregularly-shaped shell nestled cryptically between the polyps of the hermatypic coral Hydnophora Fischer, 1807, which occurs throughout most of

  4. Adipose tissue, the skeleton and cardiovascular disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiklund, Peder

    2011-07-01

    Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the Western World, although the incidence of myocardial infarction (MI) has declined over the last decades. However, obesity, which is one of the most important risk factors for CVD, is increasingly common. Osteoporosis is also on the rise because of an aging population. Based on considerable overlap in the prevalence of CVD and osteoporosis, a shared etiology has been proposed. Furthermore, the possibility of interplay between the skeleton and adipose tissue has received increasing attention the last few years with the discovery that leptin can influence bone metabolism and that osteocalcin can influence adipose tissue. A main aim of this thesis was to investigate the effects of fat mass distribution and bone mineral density on the risk of MI. Using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) we measured 592 men and women for regional fat mass in study I. In study II this was expanded to include 3258 men and women. In study III 6872 men and women had their bone mineral density measured in the total hip and femoral neck using DEXA. We found that a fat mass distribution with a higher proportion of abdominal fat mass was associated with both an adverse risk factor profile and an increased risk of MI. In contrast, a higher gynoid fat mass distribution was associated with a more favorable risk factor profile and a decreased risk of MI, highlighting the different properties of abdominal and gynoid fat depots (study I-II). In study III, we investigated the association of bone mineral density and risk factors shared between CVD and osteoporosis, and risk of MI. We found that lower bone mineral density was associated with hypertension, and also tended to be associated to other CVD risk factors. Low bone mineral density was associated with an increased risk of MI in both men and women, apparently independently of the risk factors studied (study III). In study IV, we investigated 50 healthy, young men to determine if

  5. End to End Digitisation and Analysis of Three-Dimensional Coral Models, from Communities to Corallites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez-Heredia, Luis; Benzoni, Francesca; Murphy, Emma; Reynaud, Emmanuel G

    2016-01-01

    Coral reefs hosts nearly 25% of all marine species and provide food sources for half a billion people worldwide while only a very small percentage have been surveyed. Advances in technology and processing along with affordable underwater cameras and Internet availability gives us the possibility to provide tools and softwares to survey entire coral reefs. Holistic ecological analyses of corals require not only the community view (10s to 100s of meters), but also the single colony analysis as well as corallite identification. As corals are three-dimensional, classical approaches to determine percent cover and structural complexity across spatial scales are inefficient, time-consuming and limited to experts. Here we propose an end-to-end approach to estimate these parameters using low-cost equipment (GoPro, Canon) and freeware (123D Catch, Meshmixer and Netfabb), allowing every community to participate in surveys and monitoring of their coral ecosystem. We demonstrate our approach on 9 species of underwater colonies in ranging size and morphology. 3D models of underwater colonies, fresh samples and bleached skeletons with high quality texture mapping and detailed topographic morphology were produced, and Surface Area and Volume measurements (parameters widely used for ecological and coral health studies) were calculated and analysed. Moreover, we integrated collected sample models with micro-photogrammetry models of individual corallites to aid identification and colony and polyp scale analysis.

  6. End to End Digitisation and Analysis of Three-Dimensional Coral Models, from Communities to Corallites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Gutierrez-Heredia

    Full Text Available Coral reefs hosts nearly 25% of all marine species and provide food sources for half a billion people worldwide while only a very small percentage have been surveyed. Advances in technology and processing along with affordable underwater cameras and Internet availability gives us the possibility to provide tools and softwares to survey entire coral reefs. Holistic ecological analyses of corals require not only the community view (10s to 100s of meters, but also the single colony analysis as well as corallite identification. As corals are three-dimensional, classical approaches to determine percent cover and structural complexity across spatial scales are inefficient, time-consuming and limited to experts. Here we propose an end-to-end approach to estimate these parameters using low-cost equipment (GoPro, Canon and freeware (123D Catch, Meshmixer and Netfabb, allowing every community to participate in surveys and monitoring of their coral ecosystem. We demonstrate our approach on 9 species of underwater colonies in ranging size and morphology. 3D models of underwater colonies, fresh samples and bleached skeletons with high quality texture mapping and detailed topographic morphology were produced, and Surface Area and Volume measurements (parameters widely used for ecological and coral health studies were calculated and analysed. Moreover, we integrated collected sample models with micro-photogrammetry models of individual corallites to aid identification and colony and polyp scale analysis.

  7. Bicarbonate transporters in corals point towards a key step in the evolution of cnidarian calcification

    KAUST Repository

    Zoccola, Didier

    2015-06-04

    The bicarbonate ion (HCO3−) is involved in two major physiological processes in corals, biomineralization and photosynthesis, yet no molecular data on bicarbonate transporters are available. Here, we characterized plasma membrane-type HCO3− transporters in the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata. Eight solute carrier (SLC) genes were found in the genome: five homologs of mammalian-type SLC4 family members, and three of mammalian-type SLC26 family members. Using relative expression analysis and immunostaining, we analyzed the cellular distribution of these transporters and conducted phylogenetic analyses to determine the extent of conservation among cnidarian model organisms. Our data suggest that the SLC4γ isoform is specific to scleractinian corals and responsible for supplying HCO3− to the site of calcification. Taken together, SLC4γ appears to be one of the key genes for skeleton building in corals, which bears profound implications for our understanding of coral biomineralization and the evolution of scleractinian corals within cnidarians.

  8. Optimization of DNA extraction from a scleractinian coral for the detection of thymine dimers by immunoassay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banaszak, Anastazia T

    2007-01-01

    Ultraviolet (UV)-B is known to cause DNA damage, principally by the formation of thymine dimers, but little research has been conducted in coral reef environments where UV doses are high. The majority of tropical reef-dwelling corals form a mutualistic symbiosis with the dinoflagellate Symbiodinium but few studies have been conducted on in situ DNA damage in corals and none have investigated the symbiotic components separately. The aim of this research was to quantify DNA damage in both the coral host and the dinoflagellate symbiont. The first step in this investigation was to optimize the extraction of DNA from the host, Porites astreoides, as well as the symbiont. The optimization was divided into a series of steps: the preservation of the samples, separation of the coral tissue from the skeleton, separation of the host tissue from the algal cells to prevent cross contamination as well as the extraction and purification of genomic DNA from the algae that are located intracellularly within the invertebrate animal tissue. The best preservation method was freezing at low temperatures without ethanol. After scraping with a razor blade, the coral tissue can be divided into host and algal components and the DNA extracted using modifications of published techniques yielding DNA suitable for the quantification of thymine dimer formation using antibodies. Preliminary data suggest that in P. astreoides collected from 1 m depth, thymine dimers form approximately 2.8 times more frequently in the host DNA than in the DNA of its symbionts.

  9. Plasticity in skeletal characteristics of nursery-raised staghorn coral, Acropora cervicornis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuffner, Ilsa B.; Bartels, Erich; Stathakopoulos, Anastasios; Enochs, Ian C.; Kolodziej, G.; Toth, Lauren T.; Manzello, Derek P.

    2017-09-01

    Staghorn coral, Acropora cervicornis, is a threatened species and the primary focus of western Atlantic reef restoration efforts to date. We compared linear extension, calcification rate, and skeletal density of nursery-raised A. cervicornis branches reared for 6 months either on blocks attached to substratum or hanging from PVC trees in the water column. We demonstrate that branches grown on the substratum had significantly higher skeletal density, measured using computerized tomography, and lower linear extension rates compared to water-column fragments. Calcification rates determined with buoyant weighing were not statistically different between the two grow-out methods, but did vary among coral genotypes. Whereas skeletal density and extension rates were plastic traits that depended on grow-out method, calcification rate was conserved. Our results show that the two rearing methods generate the same amount of calcium carbonate skeleton but produce colonies with different skeletal characteristics and suggest that there is genetically based variability in coral calcification performance.

  10. Thresholds for Coral Bleaching: Are Synergistic Factors and Shifting Thresholds Changing the Landscape for Management? (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eakin, C.; Donner, S. D.; Logan, C. A.; Gledhill, D. K.; Liu, G.; Heron, S. F.; Christensen, T.; Rauenzahn, J.; Morgan, J.; Parker, B. A.; Hoegh-Guldberg, O.; Skirving, W. J.; Strong, A. E.

    2010-12-01

    As carbon dioxide rises in the atmosphere, climate change and ocean acidification are modifying important physical and chemical parameters in the oceans with resulting impacts on coral reef ecosystems. Rising CO2 is warming the world’s oceans and causing corals to bleach, with both alarming frequency and severity. The frequent return of stressful temperatures has already resulted in major damage to many of the world’s coral reefs and is expected to continue in the foreseeable future. Warmer oceans also have contributed to a rise in coral infectious diseases. Both bleaching and infectious disease can result in coral mortality and threaten one of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth and the important ecosystem services they provide. Additionally, ocean acidification from rising CO2 is reducing the availability of carbonate ions needed by corals to build their skeletons and perhaps depressing the threshold for bleaching. While thresholds vary among species and locations, it is clear that corals around the world are already experiencing anomalous temperatures that are too high, too often, and that warming is exceeding the rate at which corals can adapt. This is despite a complex adaptive capacity that involves both the coral host and the zooxanthellae, including changes in the relative abundance of the latter in their coral hosts. The safe upper limit for atmospheric CO2 is probably somewhere below 350ppm, a level we passed decades ago, and for temperature is a sustained global temperature increase of less than 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. How much can corals acclimate and/or adapt to the unprecedented fast changing environmental conditions? Any change in the threshold for coral bleaching as the result of acclimation and/or adaption may help corals to survive in the future but adaptation to one stress may be maladaptive to another. There also is evidence that ocean acidification and nutrient enrichment modify this threshold. What do shifting thresholds mean

  11. Network quotients: structural skeletons of complex systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Yanghua; MacArthur, Ben D; Wang, Hui; Xiong, Momiao; Wang, Wei

    2008-10-01

    A defining feature of many large empirical networks is their intrinsic complexity. However, many networks also contain a large degree of structural repetition. An immediate question then arises: can we characterize essential network complexity while excluding structural redundancy? In this article we utilize inherent network symmetry to collapse all redundant information from a network, resulting in a coarse graining which we show to carry the essential structural information of the "parent" network. In the context of algebraic combinatorics, this coarse-graining is known as the "quotient." We systematically explore the theoretical properties of network quotients and summarize key statistics of a variety of "real-world" quotients with respect to those of their parent networks. In particular, we find that quotients can be substantially smaller than their parent networks yet typically preserve various key functional properties such as complexity (heterogeneity and hub vertices) and communication (diameter and mean geodesic distance), suggesting that quotients constitute the essential structural skeletons of their parent networks. We summarize with a discussion of potential uses of quotients in analysis of biological regulatory networks and ways in which using quotients can reduce the computational complexity of network algorithms.

  12. Mechanobiology of TGFβ signaling in the skeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rys, Joanna P; Monteiro, David A; Alliston, Tamara

    2016-01-01

    Physical and biochemical cues play fundamental roles in the skeleton at both the tissue and cellular levels. The precise coordination of these cues is essential for skeletal development and homeostasis, and disruption of this coordination can drive disease progression. The growth factor TGFβ is involved in both the regulation of and cellular response to the physical microenvironment. It is essential to summarize the current findings regarding the mechanisms by which skeletal cells integrate physical and biochemical cues so that we can identify and address remaining gaps that could ultimately improve skeletal health. In this review, we describe the role of TGFβ in mechanobiological signaling in bone and cartilage at the tissue and cellular levels. We provide detail on how static and dynamic physical cues at the macro-level are transmitted to the micro-level, ultimately leading to regulation at each level of the TGFβ pathway and to cell differentiation. The continued integration of engineering and biological approaches is needed to answer many remaining questions, such as the mechanisms by which cells generate a coordinated response to physical and biochemical cues. We propose one such mechanism, through which the combination of TGFβ and an optimal physical microenvironment leads to synergistic induction of downstream TGFβ signaling. Copyright © 2016 International Society of Matrix Biology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. The "naked coral" hypothesis revisited--evidence for and against scleractinian monophyly.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcelo V Kitahara

    Full Text Available The relationship between Scleractinia and Corallimorpharia, Orders within Anthozoa distinguished by the presence of an aragonite skeleton in the former, is controversial. Although classically considered distinct groups, some phylogenetic analyses have placed the Corallimorpharia within a larger Scleractinia/Corallimorpharia clade, leading to the suggestion that the Corallimorpharia are "naked corals" that arose via skeleton loss during the Cretaceous from a Scleractinian ancestor. Scleractinian paraphyly is, however, contradicted by a number of recent phylogenetic studies based on mt nucleotide (nt sequence data. Whereas the "naked coral" hypothesis was based on analysis of the sequences of proteins encoded by a relatively small number of mt genomes, here a much-expanded dataset was used to reinvestigate hexacorallian phylogeny. The initial observation was that, whereas analyses based on nt data support scleractinian monophyly, those based on amino acid (aa data support the "naked coral" hypothesis, irrespective of the method and with very strong support. To better understand the bases of these contrasting results, the effects of systematic errors were examined. Compared to other hexacorallians, the mt genomes of "Robust" corals have a higher (A+T content, codon usage is far more constrained, and the proteins that they encode have a markedly higher phenylalanine content, leading us to suggest that mt DNA repair may be impaired in this lineage. Thus the "naked coral" topology could be caused by high levels of saturation in these mitochondrial sequences, long-branch effects or model violations. The equivocal results of these extensive analyses highlight the fundamental problems of basing coral phylogeny on mitochondrial sequence data.

  14. Uncoupling temperature-dependent mortality from lipid depletion for scleractinian coral larvae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, E. M.; Baird, A. H.; Connolly, S. R.; Sewell, M. A.; Willis, B. L.

    2017-03-01

    Predicted increases in sea-surface temperatures due to climate change are likely to alter the physiology of marine organisms and ultimately influence the distribution and abundance of their populations. The consequences of increased temperatures for marine species, including decreased survival and altered rates of development, growth and settlement, are well known and often attributed to imbalances between energy supply and demand. To test this hypothesis, we calibrated the effect of temperature on rates of survival and lipid depletion for larvae of the common stony coral Acropora tenuis over a 7 °C temperature range. Temperature had a pronounced, linearly increasing effect on larval mortality, with a sixfold decrease in median survival time. Contrary to expectation, however, temperature had a quasi-parabolic effect on lipid use; rates declined as temperatures either increased above or decreased below the ambient temperature at the time of spawning. This contrasts with previous work suggesting that increased energy depletion is the cause of larval mortality at higher temperatures. Our results highlight the sensitivity of coral larvae to temperature and have implications for dispersal potential because fewer larvae will survive to disperse. Such projected declines in connectivity among coral populations are likely to undermine reef resilience.

  15. learning algorithms for sensor interpretation on an exo-skeleton

    OpenAIRE

    Bonné, Ruben

    2017-01-01

    COMmeto, active in software architecture services and software development, is involved together with 7 other partners in a European project called Axo-Suit to develop an assistive exo-skeleton for elderly people. COMmeto is responsible for the software architecture. In the case of the arm of the exo-skeleton the adjustment of the exo-skeleton to a person is carried out manually which takes a long time. This thesis focuses on the development of a machine learning algorithm to detect and class...

  16. Harmonic skeleton guided evaluation of stenoses in human coronary arteries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yan; Zhu, Lei; Haker, Steven; Tannenbaum, Allen R; Giddens, Don P

    2005-01-01

    This paper presents a novel approach that three-dimensionally visualizes and evaluates stenoses in human coronary arteries by using harmonic skeletons. A harmonic skeleton is the center line of a multi-branched tubular surface extracted based on a harmonic function, which is the solution of the Laplace equation. This skeletonization method guarantees smoothness and connectivity and provides a fast and straightforward way to calculate local cross-sectional areas of the arteries, and thus provides the possibility to localize and evaluate coronary artery stenosis, which is a commonly seen pathology in coronary artery disease.

  17. Chronicling coral death

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friebele, Elaine

    How would a geologist approach an assessment of the health of coral reefs? Readers of the June 1997 issue of Geotimes learn the answer by following the thoughts of George, a fictional geologist attending an international conference on global reef decline.In “Gauging the Health of the World's Coral Reefs: Monitoring vs. Mapping,” University of Miami marine geologist Robert N. Ginsburg, using the voice of George, suggests that mapping dead and dying corals would document the history and extent of reef decline and provide more clues about the relationship between coral health and such factors as location and ocean circulation than would monitoring. By some estimates, as many as 10% of the world's reefs have been seriously damaged by over-exploitation, pollution, disease, ocean warming, and predators. Twenty years ago, 50% of the sea floor near Jamaica was covered by living coral; today, that coverage has decreased to 5%. In response to this decline, an international coalition has designated 1997 as the International Year of the Reef.

  18. Sedimentation on the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa: cleaning efficiency from natural sediments and drill cuttings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsson, Ann I; Purser, Autun

    2011-06-01

    Anthropogenic threats to cold-water coral reefs are trawling and hydrocarbon drilling, with both activities causing increased levels of suspended particles. The efficiency of Lophelia pertusa in rejecting local sediments and drill cuttings from the coral surface was evaluated and found not to differ between sediment types. Further results showed that the coral efficiently removed deposited material even after repeated exposures, indicating an efficient cleaning mechanism. In an experiment focusing on burial, fine-fraction drill cuttings were deposited on corals over time. Drill cutting covered coral area increased with repeated depositions, with accumulation mainly occurring on and adjacent to regions of the coral skeleton lacking tissue cover. Tissue was smothered and polyp mortality occurred where polyps became wholly covered by material. Burial of coral by drill cuttings to the current threshold level used in environmental risk assessment models by the offshore industry (6.3mm) may result in damage to L. pertusa colonies. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Snake bite: coral snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Michael E

    2006-11-01

    North American coral snakes are distinctively colored beginning with a black snout and an alternating pattern of black, yellow, and red. They have fixed front fangs and a poorly developed system for venom delivery, requiring a chewing action to inject the venom. The severity of a coral snake bite is related to the volume of venom injected and the size of the victim. The length of the snake correlates positively with the snakes venom yield. Coral snake venom is primarily neurotoxic with little local tissue reaction or pain at the bite site. The net effect of the neurotoxins is a curare like syndrome. In canine victims there have been reports of marked hemolysis with severe anemia and hemoglobinuria. The onset of clinical signs may be delayed for as much as 10 to 18 hours. The victim begins to have alterations in mental status and develops generalized weakness and muscle fasciculations. Progression to paralysis of the limbs and respiratory muscles then follows. The best flied response to coral snake envenomation is rapid transport to a veterinary medical facility capable of 24 hour critical care and assisted ventilation. First aid treatment advocated in Australia for Elapid bites is the immediate use of a compression bandage. The victim should be hospitalized for a minimum of 48 hours for continuous monitoring. The only definitive treatment for coral snake envenomation is the administration of antivenin (M. fulvius). Once clinical signs of coral snake envenomation become manifest they progress with alarming rapidity and are difficult to reverse. If antivenin is not available or if its administration is delayed, supportive care includes respiratory support. Assisted mechanical ventilation can be used but may have to be employed for up to 48 to 72 hours.

  20. Fracture occurrence from radionuclides in the skeleton

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lloyd, R.D.; Taylor, G.N.; Miller, S.C.

    2000-06-01

    Because skeletal fractures were an important finding among persons contaminated with {sup 226}Ra, experience with fractures among dogs in the colony was summarized to determine the projected significance for persons contaminated with bone-seeking radionuclides. Comparison by Fisher's Exact Test of lifetime fracture occurrence in the skeletons of beagles injected as young adults suggested that for animals given {sup 226}Ra, {sup 228}Ra, {sup 228}Th, or {sup 239}Pu citrate, there was probably an excess over controls in fractures of the ribs, leg bones, spinous processes, and pelvis (os coxae) plus the mandible for dogs given {sup 226}Ra and the scapulae for dogs given {sup 228}Ra or 228 Th. Regression analysis indicated that significantly elevated fracture occurrence was especially notable at the higher radiation doses, at about 50 Gy average skeletal dose for {sup 239}Pu, 140 Gy for {sup 226}Ra, about 40 Gy for {sup 228}Ra, and more than 15 Gy for {sup 228}Th. The average number of fractures per dog was significantly elevated over that noted in controls for the highest radiation doses of {sup 239}Pu and {sup 226}Ra and for the higher doses of {sup 228}Ra and {sup 228}Th. For those dogs given {sup 90}Sr citrate, there was virtually no important difference from control beagles not given radionuclides, even at group mean cumulative skeletal radiation doses up to 101 Gy. Because of a large proportion of dogs with fractures that died with bone malignancy (even at dosage levels lower than those exhibiting an excess average number of fractures per dog), they conclude that fracture would not be an important endpoint at lower levels of plutonium contamination in humans such as would be expected to occur from occupational or environmental exposure.

  1. Energy metabolism and the skeleton: Reciprocal interplay

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amelio, Patrizia; Panico, Anna; Spertino, Elena; Isaia, Giovanni Carlo

    2012-01-01

    The relation between bone remodelling and energy expenditure is an intriguing, and yet unexplained, challenge of the past ten years. In fact, it was only in the last few years that the skeleton was found to function, not only in its obvious roles of body support and protection, but also as an important part of the endocrine system. In particular, bone produces different hormones, like osteocalcin (OC), which influences energy expenditure in humans. The undercarboxylated form of OC has a reduced affinity for hydroxyapatite; hence it enters the systemic circulation more easily and exerts its metabolic functions for the proliferation of pancreatic β-cells, insulin secretion, sensitivity, and glucose tolerance. Leptin, a hormone synthesized by adipocytes, also has an effect on both bone remodelling and energy expenditure; in fact it inhibits appetite through hypothalamic influence and, in bone, stimulates osteoblastic differentiation and inhibits apoptosis. Leptin and serotonin exert opposite influences on bone mass accrual, but several features suggest that they might operate in the same pathway through a sympathetic tone. Serotonin, in fact, acts via two opposite pathways in controlling bone remodelling: central and peripheral. Serotonin product by the gastrointestinal tract (95%) augments bone formation by osteoblast, whereas brain-derived serotonin influences low bone mineral density and its decrease leads to an increase in bone resorption parameters. Finally, amylin (AMY) acts as a hormone that alters physiological responses related to feeding, and plays a role as a growth factor in bone. In vitro AMY stimulates the proliferation of osteoblasts, and osteoclast differentiation. Here we summarize the evidence that links energy expenditure and bone remodelling, with particular regard to humans. PMID:23330074

  2. Regulation of glucose metabolism and the skeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Kong Wah

    2011-08-01

    Complex interactions occur among adipose tissue, the central nervous system, bone and pancreas to integrate bone remodelling, glucose, lipid and energy metabolism. Data obtained largely from the judicious use of gain-of-function and loss-of-function genetic mouse models show that leptin, an adipocyte-secreted product, indirectly inhibits bone accrual through a central pathway comprising the hypothalamus and central nervous system. Increased sympathetic output acting via β2-adrenergic receptors present in osteoblasts decreases bone formation and causes increased bone resorption. Insulin is a key molecular link between bone remodelling and energy metabolism. Insulin signalling in the osteoblasts increases bone formation and resorption as well as the release of undercarboxylated osteocalcin. An increase in the release of bone-derived undercarboxylated osteocalcin into the systemic circulation enables it to act as a circulating hormone to stimulate insulin production and secretion by pancreatic β-cells and adiponectin by adipocytes. Insulin sensitivity increases, lipolysis and fat accumulation decreases while energy expenditure increases. Whether this model of integrative physiology involving the skeleton, pancreas and adipose tissue, so elegantly demonstrated in rodents, is applicable to humans is controversial. The mouse Esp gene, encoding an intracellular tyrosine phosphatase that negatively regulates insulin signalling in osteoblasts, is a pseudogene in humans, and a homolog for the Esp gene has so far not been identified in humans. A close homologue of Esp, PTP1B, is expressed in human osteoblasts and could take the role of Esp in humans. Data available from the limited number of clinical studies do not provide a sufficient body of evidence to determine whether osteocalcin or undercarboxylated osteocalcin affects glucose metabolism in humans. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  3. The Skeleton of the Milky Way

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zucker, Catherine; Battersby, Cara; Goodman, Alyssa

    2015-12-01

    Recently, Goodman et al. argued that the very long, very thin infrared dark cloud “Nessie” lies directly in the Galactic midplane and runs along the Scutum-Centaurus Arm in position-position-velocity (p-p-v) space as traced by lower-density {{CO}} and higher-density {{NH}}3 gas. Nessie was presented as the first “bone” of the Milky Way, an extraordinarily long, thin, high-contrast filament that can be used to map our Galaxy’s “skeleton.” Here we present evidence for additional bones in the Milky Way, arguing that Nessie is not a curiosity but one of several filaments that could potentially trace Galactic structure. Our 10 bone candidates are all long, filamentary, mid-infrared extinction features that lie parallel to, and no more than 20 pc from, the physical Galactic mid-plane. We use {{CO}}, {{{N}}}2{{{H}}}+, {{{HCO}}}+, and {{NH}}3 radial velocity data to establish the three-dimensional location of the candidates in p-p-v space. Of the 10 candidates, 6 also have a projected aspect ratio of ≥50:1 run along, or extremely close to, the Scutum-Centaurus Arm in p-p-v space; and exhibit no abrupt shifts in velocity. The evidence presented here suggests that these candidates mark the locations of significant spiral features, with the bone called filament 5 (“BC_18.88-0.09”) being a close analog to Nessie in the northern sky. As molecular spectral-line and extinction maps cover more of the sky at increasing resolution and sensitivity, it should be possible to find more bones in future studies.

  4. Anatomical investigation on the appendicular skeleton of the cattle ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    family Ardeidae) found in the tropics, subtropics and warm temperate zones. It is the only ... Conclusion: The skeleton of the cattle egret has a unique conformation that accommodates its ability to flight as well as being an insectivorous animal.

  5. Soluble organic matrices of aragonitic skeletons of Merulinidae (Cnidaria, Anthozoa).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauphin, Yannicke; Cuif, Jean-Pierre; Williams, C Terry

    2008-05-01

    Our interpretation of the overall taxonomy and evolution of the Scleractinia, the most important reef builders in tropical areas, has long depended exclusively on morphology of the calcareous skeletons. The reported series of physical and biochemical characterizations of skeletons and the mineralizing matrices extracted from the skeletons allow, for the first time, the level of biochemical diversity among corallites of the same family to be estimated. Similarities and differences observed in the micro- and nanostructures of the skeletons reflect those of the soluble organic matrices. Sulphur is mainly associated with sulphated acidic sugars. The role of sulphated sugars on the biomineralization processes is still underestimated. The resulting data suggest that environmental conditions may act on the mineralization process through the detailed compositions of the mineralizing matrices.

  6. Skeleton extraction based on the topology and Snakes model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Yuanxue; Ming, Chengguo; Qin, Yueting

    A new skeleton line extraction method based on topology and flux is proposed by analyzing the distribution characteristics of the gradient vector field in the Snakes model. The distribution characteristics of the skeleton line are accurately obtained by calculating the eigenvalues of the critical points and the flux of the gradient vector field. Then the skeleton lines can be effectively extracted. The results also show that there is no need for the pretreatment or binarization of the target image. The skeleton lines of complex gray images such as optical interference patterns can be effectively extracted by using this method. Compared to traditional methods, this method has many advantages, such as high extraction accuracy and fast processing speed.

  7. Reproducibility of Ba/Ca variations recorded by northeast Pacific bamboo corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrato Marks, G.; LaVigne, M.; Hill, T. M.; Sauthoff, W.; Guilderson, T. P.; Roark, E. B.; Dunbar, R. B.; Horner, T. J.

    2017-09-01

    Trace elemental ratios preserved in the calcitic skeleton of bamboo corals have been shown to serve as archives of past ocean conditions. The concentration of dissolved barium (BaSW), a bioactive nutrientlike element, is linked to biogeochemical processes such as the cycling and export of nutrients. Recent work has calibrated bamboo coral Ba/Ca, a new BaSW proxy, using corals spanning the oxygen minimum zone beneath the California Current System. However, it was previously unclear whether Ba/Cacoral records were internally reproducible. Here we investigate the accuracy of using laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry for Ba/Cacoral analyses and test the internal reproducibility of Ba/Ca among replicate radial transects in the calcite of nine bamboo corals collected from the Gulf of Alaska (643-720 m) and the California margin (870-2054 m). Data from replicate Ba/Ca transects were aligned using visible growth bands to account for nonconcentric growth; smoothed data were reproducible within 4% for eight corals (n = 3 radii/coral). This intracoral reproducibility further validates using bamboo coral Ba/Ca for BaSW reconstructions. Sections of the Ba/Ca records that were potentially influenced by noncarbonate bound Ba phases occurred in regions where elevated Mg/Ca or Pb/Ca and coincided with anomalous regions on photomicrographs. After removing these regions of the records, increased Ba/Cacoral variability was evident in corals between 800 and 1500 m. These findings support additional proxy validation to understand BaSW variability on interannual timescales, which could lead to new insights into deep sea biogeochemistry over the past several centuries.

  8. Relationship between water and aragonite barium concentrations in aquaria reared juvenile corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonneea, Meagan Eagle; Cohen, Anne L.; DeCarlo, Thomas M.; Charette, Matthew A.

    2017-07-01

    Coral barium to calcium (Ba/Ca) ratios have been used to reconstruct records of upwelling, river and groundwater discharge, and sediment and dust input to the coastal ocean. However, this proxy has not yet been explicitly tested to determine if Ba inclusion in the coral skeleton is directly proportional to seawater Ba concentration and to further determine how additional factors such as temperature and calcification rate control coral Ba/Ca ratios. We measured the inclusion of Ba within aquaria reared juvenile corals (Favia fragum) at three temperatures (∼27.7, 24.6 and 22.5 °C) and three seawater Ba concentrations (73, 230 and 450 nmol kg-1). Coral polyps were settled on tiles conditioned with encrusting coralline algae, which complicated chemical analysis of the coral skeletal material grown during the aquaria experiments. We utilized Sr/Ca ratios of encrusting coralline algae (as low as 3.4 mmol mol-1) to correct coral Ba/Ca for this contamination, which was determined to be 26 ± 11% using a two end member mixing model. Notably, there was a large range in Ba/Ca across all treatments, however, we found that Ba inclusion was linear across the full concentration range. The temperature sensitivity of the distribution coefficient is within the range of previously reported values. Finally, calcification rate, which displayed large variability, was not correlated to the distribution coefficient. The observed temperature dependence predicts a change in coral Ba/Ca ratios of 1.1 μmol mol-1 from 20 to 28 °C for typical coastal ocean Ba concentrations of 50 nmol kg-1. Given the linear uptake of Ba by corals observed in this study, coral proxy records that demonstrate peaks of 10-25 μmol mol-1 would require coastal seawater Ba of between 60 and 145 nmol kg-1. Further validation of the coral Ba/Ca proxy requires evaluation of changes in seawater chemistry associated with the environmental perturbation recorded by the coral as well as verification of these results for

  9. Relationship between water and aragonite barium concentrations in aquaria reared juvenile corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonneea, Meagan; Cohen, Anne L.; DeCarlo, Thomas M.; Charette, Matthew A.

    2017-01-01

    Coral barium to calcium (Ba/Ca) ratios have been used to reconstruct records of upwelling, river and groundwater discharge, and sediment and dust input to the coastal ocean. However, this proxy has not yet been explicitly tested to determine if Ba inclusion in the coral skeleton is directly proportional to seawater Ba concentration and to further determine how additional factors such as temperature and calcification rate control coral Ba/Ca ratios. We measured the inclusion of Ba within aquaria reared juvenile corals (Favia fragum) at three temperatures (∼27.7, 24.6 and 22.5 °C) and three seawater Ba concentrations (73, 230 and 450 nmol kg−1). Coral polyps were settled on tiles conditioned with encrusting coralline algae, which complicated chemical analysis of the coral skeletal material grown during the aquaria experiments. We utilized Sr/Ca ratios of encrusting coralline algae (as low as 3.4 mmol mol−1) to correct coral Ba/Ca for this contamination, which was determined to be 26 ± 11% using a two end member mixing model. Notably, there was a large range in Ba/Ca across all treatments, however, we found that Ba inclusion was linear across the full concentration range. The temperature sensitivity of the distribution coefficient is within the range of previously reported values. Finally, calcification rate, which displayed large variability, was not correlated to the distribution coefficient. The observed temperature dependence predicts a change in coral Ba/Ca ratios of 1.1 μmol mol−1 from 20 to 28 °C for typical coastal ocean Ba concentrations of 50 nmol kg−1. Given the linear uptake of Ba by corals observed in this study, coral proxy records that demonstrate peaks of 10–25 μmol mol−1 would require coastal seawater Ba of between 60 and 145 nmol kg−1. Further validation of the coral Ba/Ca proxy requires evaluation of changes in seawater chemistry associated with the environmental perturbation recorded by the coral as well as

  10. Uptake and distribution of organo-iodine in deep-sea corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prouty, Nancy G.; Roark, E. Brendan; Mohon, Leslye M.; Chang, Ching-Chih; Mohon, Leslye M.; Ching-Chih Chang,

    2018-01-01

    Understanding iodine concentration, transport, and bioavailability is essential in evaluating iodine's impact to the environment and its effectiveness as an environmental biogeotracer. While iodine and its radionuclides have proven to be important tracers in geologic and biologic studies, little is known about transport of this element to the deep sea and subsequent uptake in deep-sea coral habitats. Results presented here on deep-sea black coral iodine speciation and iodine isotope variability provides key information on iodine behavior in natural and anthropogenic environments, and its geochemical pathway in the Gulf of Mexico. Organo-iodine is the dominant iodine species in the black corals, demonstrating that binding of iodine to organic matter plays an important role in the transport and transfer of iodine to the deep-sea corals. The identification of growth bands captured in high-resolution scanning electron images (SEM) with synchronous peaks in iodine variability suggest that riverine delivery of terrestrial-derived organo-iodine is the most plausible explanation to account for annual periodicity in the deep-sea coral geochemistry. Whereas previous studies have suggested the presence of annual growth rings in deep-sea corals, this present study provides a mechanism to explain the formation of annual growth bands. Furthermore, deep-sea coral ages based on iodine peak counts agree well with those ages derived from radiocarbon (14C) measurements. These results hold promise for developing chronologies independent of 14C dating, which is an essential component in constraining reservoir ages and using radiocarbon as a tracer of ocean circulation. Furthermore, the presence of enriched 129I/127I ratios during the most recent period of skeleton growth is linked to nuclear weapons testing during the 1960s. The sensitivity of the coral skeleton to record changes in surface water 129I composition provides further evidence that iodine composition and isotope

  11. Program Transformation to Identify List-Based Parallel Skeletons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Venkatesh Kannan

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Algorithmic skeletons are used as building-blocks to ease the task of parallel programming by abstracting the details of parallel implementation from the developer. Most existing libraries provide implementations of skeletons that are defined over flat data types such as lists or arrays. However, skeleton-based parallel programming is still very challenging as it requires intricate analysis of the underlying algorithm and often uses inefficient intermediate data structures. Further, the algorithmic structure of a given program may not match those of list-based skeletons. In this paper, we present a method to automatically transform any given program to one that is defined over a list and is more likely to contain instances of list-based skeletons. This facilitates the parallel execution of a transformed program using existing implementations of list-based parallel skeletons. Further, by using an existing transformation called distillation in conjunction with our method, we produce transformed programs that contain fewer inefficient intermediate data structures.

  12. Corals from Space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patzert, William C.

    1999-01-01

    The goal of this research is to monitor the health and vigor of coral reef ecosystems, and their sensitivity to natural and anthropogenic climate changes. To achieve these lofty goals, this research is investigating the feasibility of using spaceborne high-resolution spectrometers (on the US Landsat, French Systeme Probatoire pour l'Observation de la Terre [SPOT] and/or the Indian Resources Satellite [IRS 1C & 1D] spacecraft) to first map the aerial extent of coral reef systems, and second separate the amount of particular corals. If this is successful, we could potentially provide a quantum leap in our understanding of coral reef systems, as well as provide much needed baseline data to measure future changes in global coral reef ecosystems. In collaboration with Tomas Tomascik, Yann Morel, and other colleagues, a series of experiments were planned to coordinate in situ coral observations, high-resolution spaceborne imagery (from Landsat, SPOT, and, possibly, IRS IC spacecraft), and NASA Space Shuttle photographs and digital images. Our eventual goal is to develop "coral health algorithms" that can be used to assess time series of imagery collected from satellite sensors (Landsat since 1972, SPOT since 1986) in concert with in situ observations. The bad news from last year was that from 1997 to mid- 1998, the extreme cloudiness over southeast Asia due to prolonged smoke from El Nino-related fires and the economic chaos in this region frustrated both our space and reef-based data collection activities. When this volatile situation stabilizes, we will restart these activities. The good news was that in collaboration with Al Strong at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) we had an exciting year operationally using the NOAA's Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer sensor derived sea surface temperature products to warn of coral "bleaching" at many locations throughout the tropics. Data from NOAA's satellites showed that during the El Nino of

  13. Trace Metal Record of a 200-Year-Old Deep-Sea Bamboo Coral (Isidella sp.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hornung, J. P.; Mix, A. C.; Tepley, F. J.; Kent, A. J.; Wakefield, W. W.

    2009-12-01

    High resolution records of past oceanic conditions can be constructed from the annually secreted calcite laminations of deep-sea gorgonian corals. Previous research has shown that deep-sea gorgonians incorporate both surface organic matter and nutrients from the surrounding water into their coral skeleton, making them ideal recorders of long-term ocean variability of surface and intermediate water. In this study we examined a 200-year-old bamboo coral (Isidella sp.) that was live collected by bottom trawl in the summer of 2000 on the Oregon continental margin at a water depth of 1148m. We explored how annual changes in upwelling strength, circulation and surface productivity are reflected in the trace metal concentrations recorded in the carbonate skeleton of the bamboo coral. To determine trace metal concentrations, laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry was employed at a resolution of 10microns on multiple radial transects of the coral cross section. Minor element abundances were determined on the same transects by electron microprobe (EMP) analysis. We constructed an age model by counting peaks in the ratio of magnesium to calcium abundances obtained from the EMP. Uranium series dating methods were then used to verify the age model. The concentrations of phosphorus (P), barium (Ba) and cadmium (Cd) showed considerable variation through time. Initial time series data of phosphorus to calcium (P/Ca) ratios indicates strong variability at the decadal scale, potentially reflecting varying nutrient availability. Cadmium to calcium (Cd/Ca) ratios also showed strong variability at the decadal scale. However, periods of increased P/Ca did not always correspond to elevated Cd/Ca, suggesting that P and Cd concentrations were not controlled by the same processes. The record of barium to calcium (Ba/Ca) ratios was poorly correlated to both P/Ca and Cd/Ca and showed irregular episodes of increased Ba/Ca. These irregular episodes may indicate disturbance

  14. National Coral Reef Monitoring Program: Assessment of coral reef communities in Puerto Rico using the Coral Demographics method

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Coral Demographic method is one of two benthic surveys conducted in Puerto Rico as part of the National Coral Reef Monitoring Program (NCRMP). The coral...

  15. Coral skeletal carbon isotopes (δ13C and Δ14C) record the delivery of terrestrial carbon to the coastal waters of Puerto Rico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moyer, R.P.; Grottoli, A.G.

    2011-01-01

    Tropical small mountainous rivers deliver a poorly quantified, but potentially significant, amount of carbon to the world's oceans. However, few historical records of land-ocean carbon transfer exist for any region on Earth. Corals have the potential to provide such records, because they draw on dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) for calcification. In temperate systems, the stable- (δ13C) and radiocarbon (Δ14C) isotopes of coastal DIC are influenced by the δ13C and Δ14C of the DIC transported from adjacent rivers. A similar pattern should exist in tropical coastal DIC and hence coral skeletons. Here, δ13C and Δ14C measurements were made in a 56-year-old Montastraea faveolata coral growing ~1 km from the mouth of the Rio Fajardo in eastern Puerto Rico. Additionally, the δ13C and Δ14C values of the DIC of the Rio Fajardo and its adjacent coastal waters were measured during two wet and dry seasons. Three major findings were observed: (1) synchronous depletions of both δ13C and Δ14C in the coral skeleton are annually coherent with the timing of peak river discharge, (2) riverine DIC was always more depleted in δ13C and Δ14C than seawater DIC, and (3) the correlation of δ13C and Δ14C was the same in both coral skeleton and the DIC of the river and coastal waters. These results indicate that coral skeletal δ13C and Δ14C are recording the delivery of riverine DIC to the coastal ocean. Thus, coral records could be used to develop proxies of historical land-ocean carbon flux for many tropical regions. Such information could be invaluable for understanding the role of tropical land-ocean carbon flux in the context of land-use change and global climate change.

  16. PpYUC11, a strong candidate gene for the stony hard phenotype in peach (Prunus persica L. Batsch), participates in IAA biosynthesis during fruit ripening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Lei; Zeng, Wenfang; Niu, Liang; Lu, Zhenhua; Liu, Hui; Cui, Guochao; Zhu, Yunqin; Chu, Jinfang; Li, Weiping; Fang, Weichao; Cai, Zuguo; Li, Guohuai; Wang, Zhiqiang

    2015-12-01

    High concentrations of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) are required for climacteric ethylene biosynthesis to cause fruit softening in melting flesh peaches at the late ripening stage. By contrast, the fruits of stony hard peach cultivars do not soften and produce little ethylene due to the low IAA concentrations. To investigate the regulation of IAA accumulation during peach ripening [the transition from stage S3 to stage S4 III (climacteric)], a digital gene expression (DGE) analysis was performed. The expression patterns of auxin-homeostasis-related genes were compared in fruits of the melting flesh peach 'Goldhoney 3' and the stony hard flesh peach 'Yumyeong' during the ripening stage. It is revealed here that a YUCCA flavin mono-oxygenase gene (PpYUC11, ppa008176m), a key gene in auxin biosynthesis, displayed an identical differential expression profile to the profiles of IAA accumulation and PpACS1 transcription: the mRNA transcripts increased at the late ripening stage in melting flesh peaches but were below the limit of detection in mature fruits of stony hard peaches. In addition, the strong association between intron TC microsatellite genotypes of PpYUC11 and the flesh texture (normal or stony hard) is described in 43 peach varieties, indicating that this locus may be responsible for the stony hard phenotype in peach. These findings support the hypothesis that PpYUC11 may play an essential role in auxin biosynthesis during peach fruit ripening and is a candidate gene for the control of the stony hard phenotype in peach. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  17. Raiding the Coral Nurseries?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison M. Jones

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available A recent shift in the pattern of commercial harvest in the Keppel Island region of the southern inshore Great Barrier Reef raises concern about the depletion of a number of relatively rare restricted range taxa. The shift appears to be driven by demand from the United States (US for corals for domestic aquaria. Data from the annual status reports from the Queensland Coral Fishery were compared with export trade data to the US from the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES. Evidence was found of recent increases in the harvest of species from the Mussidae family (Acanthastrea spp. which appears to be largely driven by demand from the US. On present trends, the industry runs the risk of localized depletion of Blastomussa and Scolymia; evidenced by an increase in the harvest of small specimens and the trend of decreasing harvest despite a concurrent increase in demand. Considering their relatively high sediment tolerance compared to other reef-building species, and the current lack of information about their functional role in reef stability, the trend raises concerns about the impact of the harvest on local coral communities. The recent shift in harvest patterns could have impacts on slow-growing species by allowing harvest beyond the rate of population regeneration. In light of these factors, combined with the value of such species to local tourism, a commercial coral fishery based on uncommon but highly sought-after species may not be ecologically sustainable or economically viable in the Keppels.

  18. National Program for Inspection of Non-Federal Dams. Stony Brook Reservoir Dam MA 00293, Charles River Basin, Weston, Massachusetts. Phase I Inspection Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1979-06-01

    the dam along the west side of the reservoir. Water supply intakes and a low flow outlet are controlled from the gatehouse near the right end of the dam...face of the dam, the establishment of vegetation on bare areas, the repointing of joints at the spillway and gatehouse , the repair of an inoperative...Stony Brook Reservoir. The routing indicated that there is virtually no reduction of the peak inflow rate of 8,400 cfs into Stony Brook Reservoir and as a

  19. Metatranscriptome Sequencing of a Reef-building Coral Elucidates Holobiont Community Gene Functions in Health and Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timberlake, S.; Helbig, T.; Fernando, S.; Penn, K.; Alm, E.; Thompson, F.; Thompson, J. R.

    2012-12-01

    The coral reefs of the Abrolhos Bank of Brazil play a vital ecological role in the health of the Southern Atlantic Ocean, but accelerating rates of disease, particularly white plague, threaten this ecosystem. Thus, an understanding of white plague disease and diagnostic tests for it are urgently needed. The coral animal is associated with a distinct microbiome, a diverse assemblage of eukaryotes, bacteria, and viruses. That these microbes have a great influence on the health of the coral has been long known, however, most of their functions are still mysterious. While recent studies have contrasted healthy and white-plague-associated communities, the causative agents and mechanisms of the disease remain unknown. We collected fragments of healthy and diseased corals, as well as post-disease skeleton, from 12 colonies of the genus Mussismilia, the major component of the reef structure in the Abrolhos bank, and increasingly, a victim of white-plague disease. Fragments were flash-frozen in situ, and prepped for culture-free high throughput sequencing of gene transcripts with the Illumina II-G. While the membership of the microbial communities associated with coral has been previously described, the a coral holobiont community's gene function has, to date, never been assayed by this powerful approach. We designed a bioinformatics pipeline to analyze the short-read data from this complex sample: identifying the functions of genes expressed in the holobiont, and describing the active community's taxonomic composition. We show that gene functions expressed by the coral's bacterial assemblage are distinct from those of the underlying skeleton, and we highlight differences in the disease samples. We find that gene markers for the dissimilatory sulfate reduction pathway more abundant in the disease state, and we further quantify this difference with qPCR. Finally, we report the abundant expression of highly repetitive transcripts in the diseased coral samples, and highlight

  20. Histoire de lÈstonie et de la nation estonienne : Eesti ja eesti rahvuse ajalugu : intervjuu Jean-Pierre Minaudier̀ga / Jean-Pierre Minaudier ; küsitlenud Marek Tamm

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Minaudier, Jean-Pierre

    2008-01-01

    Intervjuu raamatu "Histoire de lÈstonie et de la nation estonienne" autori, prantsuse ajaloolase Jean-Pierre Minaudier̀ga. Raamatututvustus : Minaudier, Jean-Pierre. Histoire de lÈstonie et de la nation estonienne. Paris : L̀Harmattan, 2007 (Bibliothèque finno-ougrienne; 17)

  1. Opportunistic feeding on various organic food sources by the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, C. E.; Larsson, A. I.; Veuger, B.; Middelburg, J. J.; van Oevelen, D.

    2014-01-01

    The ability of the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa to exploit different food sources was investigated under standardized conditions in a flume. The tested food sources, dissolved organic matter (DOM, added as dissolved free amino acids), bacteria, algae, and zooplankton (Artemia) were deliberately enriched in 13C and 15N. The incorporation of 13C and 15N was traced into bulk tissue, fatty acids, hydrolysable amino acids, and the skeleton (13C only) of L. pertusa. Incorporation rates of carbon (ranging from 0.8-2.4 μg C g-1 DW d-1) and nitrogen (0.2-0.8 μg N g-1 DW d-1) into coral tissue did not differ significantly among food sources indicating an opportunistic feeding strategy. Although total food assimilation was comparable among sources, subsequent food processing was dependent on the type of food source ingested and recovery of assimilated C in tissue compounds ranged from 17% (algae) to 35% (Artemia). De novo synthesis of individual fatty acids by L. pertusa occurred in all treatments as indicated by the 13C enrichment of individual phospholipid-derived fatty acids (PLFAs) in the coral that were absent in the added food sources. This indicates that the coral might be less dependent on its diet as a source of specific fatty acids than expected, with direct consequences for the interpretation of in situ observations on coral nutrition based on lipid profiles.

  2. Characterization of culturable bacteria isolated from the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galkiewicz, Julia P.; Pratte, Zoe A.; Gray, Michael A.; Kellogg, Christina A.

    2011-01-01

    Microorganisms associated with corals are hypothesized to contribute to the function of the host animal by cycling nutrients, breaking down carbon sources, fixing nitrogen, and producing antibiotics. This is the first study to culture and characterize bacteria from Lophelia pertusa, a cold-water coral found in the deep sea, in an effort to understand the roles that the microorganisms play in the coral microbial community. Two sites in the northern Gulf of Mexico were sampled over 2 years. Bacteria were cultured from coral tissue, skeleton, and mucus, identified by 16S rRNA genes, and subjected to biochemical testing. Most isolates were members of the Gammaproteobacteria, although there was one isolate each from the Betaproteobacteria and Actinobacteria. Phylogenetic results showed that both sampling sites shared closely related isolates (e.g. Pseudoalteromonas spp.), indicating possible temporally and geographically stable bacterial-coral associations. The Kirby-Bauer antibiotic susceptibility test was used to separate bacteria to the strain level, with the results showing that isolates that were phylogenetically tightly grouped had varying responses to antibiotics. These results support the conclusion that phylogenetic placement cannot predict strain-level differences and further highlight the need for culture-based experiments to supplement culture-independent studies.

  3. Pulsed 86Sr-labeling and NanoSIMS imaging to study coral biomineralization at ultra-structural length scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brahmi, C.; Domart-Coulon, I.; Rougée, L.; Pyle, D. G.; Stolarski, J.; Mahoney, J. J.; Richmond, R. H.; Ostrander, G. K.; Meibom, A.

    2012-09-01

    A method to label marine biocarbonates is developed based on a concentration enrichment of a minor stable isotope of a trace element that is a natural component of seawater, resulting in the formation of biocarbonate with corresponding isotopic enrichments. This biocarbonate is subsequently imaged with a NanoSIMS ion microprobe to visualize the locations of the isotopic marker on sub-micrometric length scales, permitting resolution of all ultra-structural details. In this study, a scleractinian coral, Pocillopora damicornis, was labeled 3 times with 86Sr-enhanced seawater for a period of 48 h with 5 days under normal seawater conditions separating each labeling event. Two non-specific cellular stress biomarkers, glutathione-S-transferase activity and porphyrin concentration plus carbonic anhydrase, an enzymatic marker involved in the physiology of carbonate biomineralization, as well as unchanged levels of zooxanthellae photosynthesis efficiency indicate that coral physiological processes are not affected by the 86Sr-enhancement. NanoSIMS images of the 86Sr/44Ca ratio in skeleton formed during the experiment allow for a determination of the average extension rate of the two major ultra-structural components of the coral skeleton: Rapid Accretion Deposits are found to form on average about 4.5 times faster than Thickening Deposits. The method opens up new horizons in the study of biocarbonate formation because it holds the potential to observe growth of calcareous structures such as skeletons, shells, tests, spines formed by a wide range of organisms under essentially unperturbed physiological conditions.

  4. To understand coral disease, look at coral cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Work, Thierry M.; Meteyer, Carol U.

    2014-01-01

    Diseases threaten corals globally, but 40 years on their causes remain mostly unknown. We hypothesize that inconsistent application of a complete diagnostic approach to coral disease has contributed to this slow progress. We quantified methods used to investigate coral disease in 492 papers published between 1965 and 2013. Field surveys were used in 65% of the papers, followed by biodetection (43%), laboratory trials (20%), microscopic pathology (21%), and field trials (9%). Of the microscopic pathology efforts, 57% involved standard histopathology at the light microscopic level (12% of the total investigations), with the remainder dedicated to electron or fluorescence microscopy. Most (74%) biodetection efforts focused on culture or molecular characterization of bacteria or fungi from corals. Molecular and immunological tools have been used to incriminate infectious agents (mainly bacteria) as the cause of coral diseases without relating the agent to specific changes in cell and tissue pathology. Of 19 papers that declared an infectious agent as a cause of disease in corals, only one (5%) used microscopic pathology, and none fulfilled all of the criteria required to satisfy Koch’s postulates as applied to animal diseases currently. Vertebrate diseases of skin and mucosal surfaces present challenges similar to corals when trying to identify a pathogen from a vast array of environmental microbes, and diagnostic approaches regularly used in these cases might provide a model for investigating coral diseases. We hope this review will encourage specialists of disease in domestic animals, wildlife, fish, shellfish, and humans to contribute to the emerging field of coral disease.

  5. Seaweed-coral interactions: variance in seaweed allelopathy, coral susceptibility, and potential effects on coral resilience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonaldo, Roberta M; Hay, Mark E

    2014-01-01

    Tropical reefs are in global decline with seaweeds commonly replacing corals. Negative associations between macroalgae and corals are well documented, but the mechanisms involved, the dynamics of the interactions, and variance in effects of different macroalgal-coral pairings are poorly investigated. We assessed the frequency, magnitude, and dynamics of macroalgal-coral competition involving allelopathic and non-allelopathic macroalgae on three, spatially grouped pairs of no-take Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and non-MPAs in Fiji. In non-MPAs, biomass of herbivorous fishes was 70-80% lower, macroalgal cover 4-9 fold higher, macroalgal-coral contacts 5-15 fold more frequent and 23-67 fold more extensive (measured as % of colony margin contacted by macroalgae), and coral cover 51-68% lower than in MPAs. Coral contacts with allelopathic macroalgae occurred less frequently than expected by chance across all sites, while contact with non-allelopathic macroalgae tended to occur more frequently than expected. Transplants of allelopathic macroalgae (Chlorodesmis fastigiata and Galaxaura filamentosa) against coral edges inflicted damage to Acropora aspera and Pocillopora damicornis more rapidly and extensively than to Porites cylindrica and Porites lobata, which appeared more resistant to these macroalgae. Montipora digitata experienced intermediate damage. Extent of damage from macroalgal contact was independent of coral colony size for each of the 10 macroalgal-coral pairings we established. When natural contacts with Galaxaura filamentosa were removed in the field, recovery was rapid for Porites lobata, but Pocillopora damicornis did not recover and damage continued to expand. As macroalgae increase on overfished tropical reefs, allelopathy could produce feedbacks that suppress coral resilience, prevent coral recovery, and promote the stability of algal beds in habitats previously available to corals.

  6. Seaweed-coral interactions: variance in seaweed allelopathy, coral susceptibility, and potential effects on coral resilience.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberta M Bonaldo

    Full Text Available Tropical reefs are in global decline with seaweeds commonly replacing corals. Negative associations between macroalgae and corals are well documented, but the mechanisms involved, the dynamics of the interactions, and variance in effects of different macroalgal-coral pairings are poorly investigated. We assessed the frequency, magnitude, and dynamics of macroalgal-coral competition involving allelopathic and non-allelopathic macroalgae on three, spatially grouped pairs of no-take Marine Protected Areas (MPAs and non-MPAs in Fiji. In non-MPAs, biomass of herbivorous fishes was 70-80% lower, macroalgal cover 4-9 fold higher, macroalgal-coral contacts 5-15 fold more frequent and 23-67 fold more extensive (measured as % of colony margin contacted by macroalgae, and coral cover 51-68% lower than in MPAs. Coral contacts with allelopathic macroalgae occurred less frequently than expected by chance across all sites, while contact with non-allelopathic macroalgae tended to occur more frequently than expected. Transplants of allelopathic macroalgae (Chlorodesmis fastigiata and Galaxaura filamentosa against coral edges inflicted damage to Acropora aspera and Pocillopora damicornis more rapidly and extensively than to Porites cylindrica and Porites lobata, which appeared more resistant to these macroalgae. Montipora digitata experienced intermediate damage. Extent of damage from macroalgal contact was independent of coral colony size for each of the 10 macroalgal-coral pairings we established. When natural contacts with Galaxaura filamentosa were removed in the field, recovery was rapid for Porites lobata, but Pocillopora damicornis did not recover and damage continued to expand. As macroalgae increase on overfished tropical reefs, allelopathy could produce feedbacks that suppress coral resilience, prevent coral recovery, and promote the stability of algal beds in habitats previously available to corals.

  7. Changing carbonate chemistry in ocean waters surrounding coral reefs in the CMIP5 ensemble

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricke, K.; Schneider, K.; Cao, L.; Caldeira, K.

    2012-12-01

    Coral reefs comprise some of the most biodiverse ecosystems in the world. Today they are threatened by a number of stressors, including pollution, bleaching from global warming and ocean acidification. In this study, we focus on the implications of ocean acidification for the open ocean chemistry surrounding coral reefs. We use results from 13 Earth System Models included in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project 5 (CMIP5) to examine the changing aragonite saturations (Ωa) of open ocean waters surrounding approximately 6,000 coral reefs. These 13 Earth System Models participating in CMIP5 each have interactive ocean biogeochemistry models that output state variables including DIC, alkalinity, SST, and salinity. Variation in these values were combined with values from the GLODAP database to calculate aragonite, the form of calcium carbonate that corals use to make their skeletons. We used reef locations from ReefBase that were within one degree (in latitude or longitude) of water masses represented both in the GLODAP database and in the climate models. Carbonate chemistry calculations were performed by Dr. James C. Orr (IPSL) as part of a separate study. We find that in preindustrial times, 99.9 % of coral reefs were located in regions of the ocean with aragonite saturations of 3.5 or more. The saturation threshold for viable reef ecosystems in uncertain, but the pre-industrial distribution of water chemistry surrounding coral reefs may nevertheless provide some indication of viability. We examine the fate of coral reefs in the context of several potential aragonite saturation thresholds, i.e., when Ωa_crit equals 3, 3.25, or 3.5. We show that under a business-as-usual scenario Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 8.5, the specific value of Ωa_crit does not affect the long-term fate of coral reefs -- by the end of the 21st century, no coral reef considered is surrounded by water with Ωa> 3. However, under scenarios with significant CO2 emissions

  8. A unique coral biomineralization pattern has resisted 40 million years of major ocean chemistry change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolarski, Jarosław; Bosellini, Francesca R.; Wallace, Carden C.; Gothmann, Anne M.; Mazur, Maciej; Domart-Coulon, Isabelle; Gutner-Hoch, Eldad; Neuser, Rolf D.; Levy, Oren; Shemesh, Aldo; Meibom, Anders

    2016-06-01

    Today coral reefs are threatened by changes to seawater conditions associated with rapid anthropogenic global climate change. Yet, since the Cenozoic, these organisms have experienced major fluctuations in atmospheric CO2 levels (from greenhouse conditions of high pCO2 in the Eocene to low pCO2 ice-house conditions in the Oligocene-Miocene) and a dramatically changing ocean Mg/Ca ratio. Here we show that the most diverse, widespread, and abundant reef-building coral genus Acropora (20 morphological groups and 150 living species) has not only survived these environmental changes, but has maintained its distinct skeletal biomineralization pattern for at least 40 My: Well-preserved fossil Acropora skeletons from the Eocene, Oligocene, and Miocene show ultra-structures indistinguishable from those of extant representatives of the genus and their aragonitic skeleton Mg/Ca ratios trace the inferred ocean Mg/Ca ratio precisely since the Eocene. Therefore, among marine biogenic carbonate fossils, well-preserved acroporid skeletons represent material with very high potential for reconstruction of ancient ocean chemistry.

  9. In Brief: Coral ecosystems plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Showstack, Randy

    2007-08-01

    With climate change, unsustainable fishing practices, and disease ``transforming coral communities at regional to global scales,'' a 30 July report from the U.S. Geological Survey outlines a strategy for conducting research on coral ecosystems. The report indicates that USGS coral ecosystem research will focus on three major themes during the next five years, as funding permits: reef structure, ecological integrity, and the role of marine reserves; land-based and local impacts; and responses to global change.

  10. Micro- to nanostructure and geochemistry of extant crinoidal echinoderm skeletons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorzelak, P; Stolarski, J; Mazur, M; Meibom, A

    2013-01-01

    This paper reports the results of micro- to nanostructural and geochemical analyses of calcitic skeletons from extant deep-sea stalked crinoids. Fine-scale (SEM, FESEM, AFM) observations show that the crinoid skeleton is composed of carbonate nanograins, about 20-100 nm in diameter, which are partly separated by what appears to be a few nm thick organic layers. Sub-micrometre-scale geochemical mapping of crinoid ossicles using a NanoSIMS ion microprobe, combined with synchrotron high-spatial-resolution X-ray micro-fluorescence (μ-XRF) maps and X-ray absorption near-edge structure spectroscopy (XANES) show that high Mg concentration in the central region of the stereom bars correlates with the distribution of S-sulphate, which is often associated with sulphated polysaccharides in biocarbonates. These data are consistent with biomineralization models suggesting a close association between organic components (including sulphated polysaccharides) and Mg ions. Additionally, geochemical analyses (NanoSIMS, energy dispersive spectroscopy) reveal that significant variations in Mg occur at many levels: within a single stereom trabecula, within a single ossicle and within a skeleton of a single animal. Together, these data suggest that physiological factors play an important role in controlling Mg content in crinoid skeletons and that great care should be taken when using their skeletons to reconstruct, for example, palaeotemperatures and Mg/Ca palaeo-variations of the ocean. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  11. Seasonal Variability in Calorimetric Energy Content of Two Caribbean Mesophotic Corals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viktor W Brandtneris

    Full Text Available Energetic responses of zooxanthellate reef corals along depth gradients have relevance to the refugia potential of mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs. Previous observations suggested that MCEs in the Caribbean are thermally buffered during the warmest parts of the year and occur within or just below the chlorophyll maximum, suggesting abundant trophic resources. However, it is not known if mesophotic corals can maintain constant energy needs throughout the year with changing environmental and biological conditions. The energetic content of tissues from the stony coral species Orbicella faveolata and Agaricia lamarcki was measured on the southern insular shelf of St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands (USVI, using micro-bomb calorimetry. Three sites for each species, at depths of 6m, 25m, 38m and 63m, were selected to capture energetic differences across the major vertical range extent of both species in the USVI-and sampled over five periods from April 2013 to April 2014. Mesophotic colonies of O. faveolata exhibited a significant reduction in energetic content during the month of September 2013 compared to mid-depth and shallow colonies (p = 0.032, whereas A. lamarcki experienced similar energetic variability, but with a significant reduction in energy content that occurred in July 2013 for colonies at sites deeper than 25m (p = 0.014. The results of calorimetric analyses indicate that O. faveolata may be at risk during late summer stress events, possibly due to the timing of reproductive activities. The low-point of A. lamarcki energy content, which may also coincide with reproduction, occurs prior to seasonal stress events, indicating contrasting, species-specific responses to environmental variability on MCEs.

  12. Seasonal Variability in Calorimetric Energy Content of Two Caribbean Mesophotic Corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandtneris, Viktor W; Brandt, Marilyn E; Glynn, Peter W; Gyory, Joanna; Smith, Tyler B

    2016-01-01

    Energetic responses of zooxanthellate reef corals along depth gradients have relevance to the refugia potential of mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs). Previous observations suggested that MCEs in the Caribbean are thermally buffered during the warmest parts of the year and occur within or just below the chlorophyll maximum, suggesting abundant trophic resources. However, it is not known if mesophotic corals can maintain constant energy needs throughout the year with changing environmental and biological conditions. The energetic content of tissues from the stony coral species Orbicella faveolata and Agaricia lamarcki was measured on the southern insular shelf of St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands (USVI), using micro-bomb calorimetry. Three sites for each species, at depths of 6m, 25m, 38m and 63m, were selected to capture energetic differences across the major vertical range extent of both species in the USVI-and sampled over five periods from April 2013 to April 2014. Mesophotic colonies of O. faveolata exhibited a significant reduction in energetic content during the month of September 2013 compared to mid-depth and shallow colonies (p = 0.032), whereas A. lamarcki experienced similar energetic variability, but with a significant reduction in energy content that occurred in July 2013 for colonies at sites deeper than 25m (p = 0.014). The results of calorimetric analyses indicate that O. faveolata may be at risk during late summer stress events, possibly due to the timing of reproductive activities. The low-point of A. lamarcki energy content, which may also coincide with reproduction, occurs prior to seasonal stress events, indicating contrasting, species-specific responses to environmental variability on MCEs.

  13. Effects of drill cuttings on larvae of the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Järnegren, Johanna; Brooke, Sandra; Jensen, Henrik

    2017-03-01

    Fossil fuel consumption is predicted to dominate energy needs until at least 2040. To make up for reduced production from maturing fields, oil and gas exploration activities on the Norwegian continental shelf have greatly increased over the past several years. Strict emission controls have resulted in a substantial reduction in the release of hazardous chemicals. However, because of the increased exploration the discharges of water-based drill cuttings and muds have increased substantially, temporarily increasing water column sediment loads. The stony coral Lophelia pertusa is the most widely distributed and well-studied of the structure forming cold water corals (CWC) and it thrives in Norwegian waters where many reefs are located in the vicinity of oil platforms or exploration areas. This species provides habitat for a diverse and abundant assemblage of invertebrates and fishes, including commercially valuable species. High sediment loads are known to negatively affect adult corals, but impacts on the early life history stages are unknown. We investigated the effects of a range of drill cutting concentrations (0.5-640 ppm) on larvae of L. pertusa at ages five days and 15-20 days. One set of experiments was conducted in static experimental chambers that exposed larvae to decreasing concentrations over time, and the other maintained continuous drill cutting concentrations for the duration of the experiment (24 h). Increased sediment load for a duration of 24 h caused significant larval mortality, but there was an age-dependent difference in sensitivity of larvae. Younger larvae were significantly more susceptible to lower concentrations of drill cuttings than older larvae, while the older larvae were significantly more affected at higher concentrations. Five day old larvae were affected at treatment concentration 40 ppm. The larval cilia became clogged, preventing the larvae from swimming actively and ultimately causing mortality. Larvae of many species use cilia

  14. Variation in the health and biochemical condition of the coral Acropora tenuis along two water quality gradients on the Great Barrier Reef, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocker, Melissa M; Francis, David S; Fabricius, Katharina E; Willis, Bette L; Bay, Line K

    2017-06-30

    This study explores how plasticity in biochemical attributes, used as indicators of health and condition, enables the coral Acropora tenuis to respond to differing water quality regimes in inshore regions of the Great Barrier Reef. Health attributes were monitored along a strong and weak water quality gradient, each with three reefs at increasing distances from a major river source. Attributes differed significantly only along the strong gradient; corals grew fastest, had the least dense skeletons, highest symbiont densities and highest lipid concentrations closest to the river mouth, where water quality was poorest. High nutrient and particulate loads were only detrimental to skeletal density, which decreased as linear extension increased, highlighting a trade-off. Our study underscores the importance of assessing multiple health attributes in coral reef monitoring. For example, autotrophic indices are poor indicators of coral health and condition, but improve when combined with attributes like lipid content and biomass. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Analytical pyrolysis-based study on intra-skeletal organic matrices from Mediterranean corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adamiano, Alessio; Goffredo, Stefano; Dubinsky, Zvy; Levy, Oren; Fermani, Simona; Fabbri, Daniele; Falini, Giuseppe

    2014-09-01

    Off-line analytical pyrolysis combined with gas chromatography–mass spectroscopy (GC–MS), directly or after trimethylsilylation, along with infrared spectroscopy and amino acid analysis was applied for the first time to the characterization of the intra-skeletal organic matrix (OM) extracted from four Mediterranean hard corals. They were diverse in growth form and trophic strategy namely Balanophyllia europaea and Leptopsammia pruvoti—solitary corals, only the first having zooxanthelle—and Cladocora caespitosa and Astroides calycularis—colonial corals, only the first with zooxanthelle. Pyrolysis products evolved from OM could be assigned to lipid (e.g. fatty acids, fatty alcohols, monoacylglicerols), protein (e.g. 2,5-diketopiperazines, DKPs) and polysaccharide (e.g. anhydrosugars) precursors. Their quantitative distribution showed for all the species a low protein content with respect to lipids and polysaccharides. A chemometric approach using principal component analysis (PCA) and clustering analysis was applied on OM mean amino acidic compositions. The small compositional diversity across coral species was tentatively related with coral growth form. The presence of N-acetyl glucosamine markers suggested a functional link with other calcified tissues containing chitin. The protein fraction was further investigated using novel DKP markers tentatively identified from analytical pyrolysis of model polar linear dipeptides. Again, no correlation was observed in relation to coral ecology. These analytical results revealed that the bulk structure and composition of OMs among studied corals are similar, as it is the textural organization of the skeleton mineralized units. Therefore, they suggest that coral’s biomineralization is governed by similar macromolecules, and probably mechanisms, independently from their ecology.

  16. Experimental data comparing two coral grow-out methods in nursery-raised Acropora cervicornis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuffner, Ilsa B.; Bartels, Erich; Stathakopoulos, Anastasios; Enochs, Ian C.; Kolodziej, Graham; Toth, Lauren; Manzello, Derek P.

    2017-01-01

    Staghorn coral, Acropora cervicornis, is a threatened species and the primary focus of western Atlantic reef-restoration efforts to date. As part of the USGS Coral Reef Ecosystems Studies project (http://coastal.er.usgs.gov/crest/), we investigated skeletal characteristics of nursery-grown staghorn coral reared using two commonly used grow-out methods at Mote Tropical Research Laboratory’s offshore nursery. We compared linear extension, calcification rate, and skeletal density of nursery-raised A. cervicornis branches reared for six months either on blocks attached to substratum or hanging from monofilament line (on PVC “trees”) in the water column. We demonstrate that branches grown on the substratum had significantly higher skeletal density, measured using computerized tomography (CT), and lower linear extension rates compared to water-column fragments. Calcification rates determined with buoyant weighing were not statistically different between the two grow-out methods, but did vary among coral genotypes. Whereas skeletal density and extension rates were plastic traits that depended on environment, calcification rate was conserved. Our results show that the two rearing methods generate the same amount of calcium-carbonate skeleton but produce colonies with different skeletal characteristics, and suggest that genetically based variability in coral-calcification performance exists. The data resulting from this experiment are provided in this data release and are interpreted in Kuffner et al. (2017).Kuffner, I.B., E. Bartels, A. Stathakopoulos, I.C. Enochs, G. Kolodziej, L.T. Toth, and D.P. Manzello, 2017, Plasticity in skeletal characteristics of nursery-raised staghorn coral, Acropora cervicornis: Coral Reefs, in press.

  17. Improving the Teaching/Learning Process in General Chemistry: Report on the 1997 Stony Brook General Chemistry Teaching Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, David M.; Wolfskill, Troy

    1998-02-01

    Motivated by the widespread recognition that traditional teaching methods at postsecondary institutions no longer are meeting students' educational needs, 59 participants came to the first Stony Brook General Chemistry Teaching Workshop, July 20-July 25, 1997, on improving the teaching/learning process in General Chemistry. The instructors from 42 institutions across the country, including community colleges, liberal-arts colleges, and large research universities, had mutual concerns that students are having difficulty understanding and applying concepts, finding relevance, transferring knowledge within and across disciplines, and identifying and developing skills needed for success in college and a career. This situation has come about because challenges posed by students' increasing diversity in academic preparation, cultural background, motivation, and career goals go unmet, with too many courses maintaining the conventional objective of structuring and presenting information.

  18. Shedding Light on the Cosmic Skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-11-01

    Astronomers have tracked down a gigantic, previously unknown assembly of galaxies located almost seven billion light-years away from us. The discovery, made possible by combining two of the most powerful ground-based telescopes in the world, is the first observation of such a prominent galaxy structure in the distant Universe, providing further insight into the cosmic web and how it formed. "Matter is not distributed uniformly in the Universe," says Masayuki Tanaka from ESO, who led the new study. "In our cosmic vicinity, stars form in galaxies and galaxies usually form groups and clusters of galaxies. The most widely accepted cosmological theories predict that matter also clumps on a larger scale in the so-called 'cosmic web', in which galaxies, embedded in filaments stretching between voids, create a gigantic wispy structure." These filaments are millions of light years long and constitute the skeleton of the Universe: galaxies gather around them, and immense galaxy clusters form at their intersections, lurking like giant spiders waiting for more matter to digest. Scientists are struggling to determine how they swirl into existence. Although massive filamentary structures have been often observed at relatively small distances from us, solid proof of their existence in the more distant Universe has been lacking until now. The team led by Tanaka discovered a large structure around a distant cluster of galaxies in images they obtained earlier. They have now used two major ground-based telescopes to study this structure in greater detail, measuring the distances from Earth of over 150 galaxies, and, hence, obtaining a three-dimensional view of the structure. The spectroscopic observations were performed using the VIMOS instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope and FOCAS on the Subaru Telescope, operated by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan. Thanks to these and other observations, the astronomers were able to make a real demographic study of this structure

  19. Osmoadjustment in the Coral Holobiont

    KAUST Repository

    Röthig, Till

    2017-04-01

    Coral reefs are under considerable decline. The framework builders in coral reefs are scleractinian corals, which comprise so-called holobionts, consisting of cnidarian host, algal symbionts (genus Symbiodinium), and other associated microbes. Corals are commonly considered stenohaline osmoconformers, possessing limited capability to adjust to salinity changes. However, corals differ in their ability to cope with different salinities. The underlying mechanisms have not yet been addressed. To further understand putative mechanisms involved, I examined coral holobiont osmoregulation conducting a range of experiments on the coral Fungia granulosa. In my research F. granulosa from the Red Sea exhibited pronounced physiological reactions (decreased photosynthesis, cessation of calcification) upon short-term incubations (4 h) to high salinity (55). However, during a 29-day in situ salinity transect experiment, coral holobiont photosynthesis was unimpaired under high salinity (49) indicating acclimatization. F. granulosa microbiome changes after the 29-day high salinity exposure aligned with a bacterial community restructuring that putatively supports the coral salinity acclimatization (osmolyte synthesis, nutrient fixation/cycling). Long-term incubations (7 d) of cultured Symbiodinium exhibited cell growth even at ‘extreme’ salinity levels of 25 and 55. Metabolic profiles of four Symbiodinium strains exposed to increased (55) and decreased (25) salinities for 4 h indicated distinct carbohydrates and amino acids to be putatively involved in the osmoadjustment. Importantly, under high salinity the osmolyte floridoside was consistently increased. This could be corroborated in the coral model Aiptasia and in corals from the Persian/Arabian Gulf, where floridoside was also markedly increased upon short- (15 h) and long-term (>24 months) exposure to high salinity, confirming an important role of floridoside in the osmoadjustment of cnidarian holobionts. This thesis

  20. Tutorial for Wave Equation Inversion of Skeletonized Data

    KAUST Repository

    Lu, Kai

    2017-04-25

    Full waveform inversion of seismic data is often plagued by cycle skipping problems so that an iterative optimization method often gets stuck in a local minimum. To avoid this problem we simplify the objective function so that the iterative solution can quickly converge to a solution in the vicinity of the global minimum. The objective function is simplified by only using parsimonious and important portions of the data, which are defined as skeletonized data. We now present a mostly non-mathematical tutorial that explains the theory of skeletonized inversion. We also show its effectiveness with examples.

  1. A new Python library to analyse skeleton images confirms malaria parasite remodelling of the red blood cell membrane skeleton

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Nunez-Iglesias

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available We present Skan (Skeleton analysis, a Python library for the analysis of the skeleton structures of objects. It was inspired by the “analyse skeletons” plugin for the Fiji image analysis software, but its extensive Application Programming Interface (API allows users to examine and manipulate any intermediate data structures produced during the analysis. Further, its use of common Python data structures such as SciPy sparse matrices and pandas data frames opens the results to analysis within the extensive ecosystem of scientific libraries available in Python. We demonstrate the validity of Skan’s measurements by comparing its output to the established Analyze Skeletons Fiji plugin, and, with a new scanning electron microscopy (SEM-based method, we confirm that the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum remodels the host red blood cell cytoskeleton, increasing the average distance between spectrin-actin junctions.

  2. The potential of the coral species Porites astreoides as a paleoclimate archive for the Tropical South Atlantic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, N. S.; Sial, A. N.; Frei, R.; Ullmann, C. V.; Korte, C.; Kikuchi, R. K. P.; Ferreira, V. P.; Kilbourne, K. H.

    2017-08-01

    The aragonitic skeletons of corals are unique archives of geochemical tracers that can be used as proxies for environmental conditions with high fidelity and sub-annual resolution. Such records have been extensively used for reconstruction of climatic conditions in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, Red Sea and Caribbean, but lack for the Equatorial South Atlantic. Here we present coral-based records of Sr/Ca, δ18O and δ13C and the first δ18O-SST calibration for the scleractinian coral species Porites astreoides from the Rocas Atoll, Equatorial South Atlantic. The investigated geochemical proxies for P. astreoides presented a very well-developed seasonal cyclicity in all proxies. We use the monthly means of δ18O and SST from the period of 2001-2013 to propose a calibration for a paleothermometer based on Porites, which gives T(°C) = -8.69(±0.79)* δ18O -7.05(±3.14), and yielded a SST δ18O-depended reconstruction with fidelity better than 0.5 °C for most of the record. Biases of up to 2 °C might be associated with reduced growth rate periods of the coral record. The Sr/Ca data show systematic, annual fluctuations but analyses are too imprecise to propose a Sr/Ca-SST calibration. The δ13C values are found to vary in phase with δ18O and Sr/Ca and are interpreted to be controlled by solar irradiation-modulated photosynthetic activity on the annual level. Our findings extend the global data base of coral records, contributing to further investigations using coral skeleton as environmental archives. In particular, the present study helps to better understand the climate variability of the South Atlantic tropical ocean-atmosphere system.

  3. The Skeletal Proteome of the Coral Acropora millepora: The Evolution of Calcification by Co-Option and Domain Shuffling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos-Silva, Paula; Kaandorp, Jaap; Huisman, Lotte; Marie, Benjamin; Zanella-Cléon, Isabelle; Guichard, Nathalie; Miller, David J.; Marin, Frédéric

    2013-01-01

    In corals, biocalcification is a major function that may be drastically affected by ocean acidification (OA). Scleractinian corals grow by building up aragonitic exoskeletons that provide support and protection for soft tissues. Although this process has been extensively studied, the molecular basis of biocalcification is poorly understood. Notably lacking is a comprehensive catalog of the skeleton-occluded proteins—the skeletal organic matrix proteins (SOMPs) that are thought to regulate the mineral deposition. Using a combination of proteomics and transcriptomics, we report the first survey of such proteins in the staghorn coral Acropora millepora. The organic matrix (OM) extracted from the coral skeleton was analyzed by mass spectrometry and bioinformatics, enabling the identification of 36 SOMPs. These results provide novel insights into the molecular basis of coral calcification and the macroevolution of metazoan calcifying systems, whereas establishing a platform for studying the impact of OA at molecular level. Besides secreted proteins, extracellular regions of transmembrane proteins are also present, suggesting a close control of aragonite deposition by the calicoblastic epithelium. In addition to the expected SOMPs (Asp/Glu-rich, galaxins), the skeletal repertoire included several proteins containing known extracellular matrix domains. From an evolutionary perspective, the number of coral-specific proteins is low, many SOMPs having counterparts in the noncalcifying cnidarians. Extending the comparison with the skeletal OM proteomes of other metazoans allowed the identification of a pool of functional domains shared between phyla. These data suggest that co-option and domain shuffling may be general mechanisms by which the trait of calcification has evolved. PMID:23765379

  4. Diversity of Zoanthids (Anthozoa: Hexacorallia) on Hawaiian Seamounts: Description of the Hawaiian Gold Coral and Additional Zoanthids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinniger, Frederic; Ocaña, Oscar V.; Baco, Amy R.

    2013-01-01

    The Hawaiian gold coral has a history of exploitation from the deep slopes and seamounts of the Hawaiian Islands as one of the precious corals commercialised in the jewellery industry. Due to its peculiar characteristic of building a scleroproteic skeleton, this zoanthid has been referred as Gerardia sp. (a junior synonym of Savalia Nardo, 1844) but never formally described or examined by taxonomists despite its commercial interest. While collection of Hawaiian gold coral is now regulated, globally seamounts habitats are increasingly threatened by a variety of anthropogenic impacts. However, impact assessment studies and conservation measures cannot be taken without consistent knowledge of the biodiversity of such environments. Recently, multiple samples of octocoral-associated zoanthids were collected from the deep slopes of the islands and seamounts of the Hawaiian Archipelago. The molecular and morphological examination of these zoanthids revealed the presence of at least five different species including the gold coral. Among these only the gold coral appeared to create its own skeleton, two other species are simply using the octocoral as substrate, and the situation is not clear for the final two species. Phylogenetically, all these species appear related to zoanthids of the genus Savalia as well as to the octocoral-associated zoanthid Corallizoanthus tsukaharai, suggesting a common ancestor to all octocoral-associated zoanthids. The diversity of zoanthids described or observed during this study is comparable to levels of diversity found in shallow water tropical coral reefs. Such unexpected species diversity is symptomatic of the lack of biological exploration and taxonomic studies of the diversity of seamount hexacorals. PMID:23326345

  5. Diversity of zoanthids (anthozoa: hexacorallia on Hawaiian seamounts: description of the Hawaiian gold coral and additional zoanthids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frederic Sinniger

    Full Text Available The Hawaiian gold coral has a history of exploitation from the deep slopes and seamounts of the Hawaiian Islands as one of the precious corals commercialised in the jewellery industry. Due to its peculiar characteristic of building a scleroproteic skeleton, this zoanthid has been referred as Gerardia sp. (a junior synonym of Savalia Nardo, 1844 but never formally described or examined by taxonomists despite its commercial interest. While collection of Hawaiian gold coral is now regulated, globally seamounts habitats are increasingly threatened by a variety of anthropogenic impacts. However, impact assessment studies and conservation measures cannot be taken without consistent knowledge of the biodiversity of such environments. Recently, multiple samples of octocoral-associated zoanthids were collected from the deep slopes of the islands and seamounts of the Hawaiian Archipelago. The molecular and morphological examination of these zoanthids revealed the presence of at least five different species including the gold coral. Among these only the gold coral appeared to create its own skeleton, two other species are simply using the octocoral as substrate, and the situation is not clear for the final two species. Phylogenetically, all these species appear related to zoanthids of the genus Savalia as well as to the octocoral-associated zoanthid Corallizoanthus tsukaharai, suggesting a common ancestor to all octocoral-associated zoanthids. The diversity of zoanthids described or observed during this study is comparable to levels of diversity found in shallow water tropical coral reefs. Such unexpected species diversity is symptomatic of the lack of biological exploration and taxonomic studies of the diversity of seamount hexacorals.

  6. Diversity of zoanthids (anthozoa: hexacorallia) on Hawaiian seamounts: description of the Hawaiian gold coral and additional zoanthids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinniger, Frederic; Ocaña, Oscar V; Baco, Amy R

    2013-01-01

    The Hawaiian gold coral has a history of exploitation from the deep slopes and seamounts of the Hawaiian Islands as one of the precious corals commercialised in the jewellery industry. Due to its peculiar characteristic of building a scleroproteic skeleton, this zoanthid has been referred as Gerardia sp. (a junior synonym of Savalia Nardo, 1844) but never formally described or examined by taxonomists despite its commercial interest. While collection of Hawaiian gold coral is now regulated, globally seamounts habitats are increasingly threatened by a variety of anthropogenic impacts. However, impact assessment studies and conservation measures cannot be taken without consistent knowledge of the biodiversity of such environments. Recently, multiple samples of octocoral-associated zoanthids were collected from the deep slopes of the islands and seamounts of the Hawaiian Archipelago. The molecular and morphological examination of these zoanthids revealed the presence of at least five different species including the gold coral. Among these only the gold coral appeared to create its own skeleton, two other species are simply using the octocoral as substrate, and the situation is not clear for the final two species. Phylogenetically, all these species appear related to zoanthids of the genus Savalia as well as to the octocoral-associated zoanthid Corallizoanthus tsukaharai, suggesting a common ancestor to all octocoral-associated zoanthids. The diversity of zoanthids described or observed during this study is comparable to levels of diversity found in shallow water tropical coral reefs. Such unexpected species diversity is symptomatic of the lack of biological exploration and taxonomic studies of the diversity of seamount hexacorals.

  7. Growth rates and ages of deep-sea corals impacted by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prouty, Nancy G.; Fisher, Charles R.; Demopoulos, Amanda W. J.; Druffel, Ellen R. M.

    2016-01-01

    The impact of the April 2010 Deepwater Horizon (DWH) spill on deep-sea coral communities in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM) is still under investigation, as is the potential for these communities to recover. Impacts from the spill include observation of corals covered with flocculent material, with bare skeleton, excessive mucous production, sloughing tissue, and subsequent colonization of damaged areas by hydrozoans. Information on growth rates and life spans of deep-sea corals is important for understanding the vulnerability of these ecosystems to both natural and anthropogenic perturbations, as well as the likely duration of any observed adverse impacts. We report radiocarbon ages and radial and linear growth rates based on octocorals (Paramuricea spp. and Chrysogorgia sp.) collected in 2010 and 2011 from areas of the DWH impact. The oldest coral radiocarbon ages were measured on specimens collected 11 km to the SW of the oil spill from the Mississippi Canyon (MC) 344 site: 599 and 55 cal yr BP, suggesting continuous life spans of over 600 years for Paramuricea biscaya, the dominant coral species in the region. Calculated radial growth rates, between 0.34 μm yr−1 and 14.20 μm yr−1, are consistent with previously reported proteinaceous corals from the GoM. Anomalously low radiocarbon (Δ14C) values for soft tissue from some corals indicate that these corals were feeding on particulate organic carbon derived from an admixture of modern surface carbon and a low 14C carbon source. Results from this work indicate fossil carbon could contribute 5–10% to the coral soft tissue Δ14C signal within the area of the spill impact. The influence of a low 14C carbon source (e.g., petro-carbon) on the particulate organic carbon pool was observed at all sites within 30 km of the spill site, with the exception of MC118, which may have been outside of the dominant northeast-southwest zone of impact. The quantitatively assessed extreme longevity and slow growth rates documented

  8. 40 CFR 230.44 - Coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 24 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Coral reefs. 230.44 Section 230.44... Aquatic Sites § 230.44 Coral reefs. (a) Coral reefs consist of the skeletal deposit, usually of calcareous... by increasing the level of suspended particulates. Coral organisms are extremely sensitive to even...

  9. The Biology and Economics of Coral Growth

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Osinga, R.; Schutter, M.; Griffioen, B.; Wijffels, R.H.; Verreth, J.A.J.; Shafit, S.; Henard, S.; Taruffi, M.; Gili, C.; Lavorano, S.

    2011-01-01

    To protect natural coral reefs, it is of utmost importance to understand how the growth of the main reef-building organisms-the zooxanthellate scleractinian corals-is controlled. Understanding coral growth is also relevant for coral aquaculture, which is a rapidly developing business. This review

  10. New Bicyclic Cembranoids from the South China Sea Soft Coral Sarcophyton trocheliophorum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Lin-Fu; Chen, Wen-Ting; Li, Xu-Wen; Wang, He-Yao; Guo, Yue-Wei

    2017-04-01

    Nine new bicyclic cembranoids, sarcophytrols M-U(1-9), were isolated from the South China Sea soft coral Sarcophyton trocheliophorum as minor components, along with one known related cembranoid 10. Their structures were elucidated by detailed spectroscopic analysis and chemical conversion. The chemical structures of these metabolites are characterized by the different patterns of the additional cyclization within the 14-member skeleton, which leading to the formation of furan, pyran, oxepane, and peroxyl rings, respectively. Among them, sarcophytrols R and S(6 and 7) share a rare decaryiol skeleton with an unusual C12/C15 cyclization. In addition, the absolute configurations of sarcophytrols M and T(1 and 8) were determined by the modified Mosher’s method. The research of these new secondary metabolites provided a further understanding of the diversity of cyclized cembranoids from the title species.

  11. Genomes of coral dinoflagellate symbionts highlight evolutionary adaptations conducive to a symbiotic lifestyle

    KAUST Repository

    Aranda, Manuel

    2016-12-22

    Despite half a century of research, the biology of dinoflagellates remains enigmatic: they defy many functional and genetic traits attributed to typical eukaryotic cells. Genomic approaches to study dinoflagellates are often stymied due to their large, multi-gigabase genomes. Members of the genus Symbiodinium are photosynthetic endosymbionts of stony corals that provide the foundation of coral reef ecosystems. Their smaller genome sizes provide an opportunity to interrogate evolution and functionality of dinoflagellate genomes and endosymbiosis. We sequenced the genome of the ancestral Symbiodinium microadriaticum and compared it to the genomes of the more derived Symbiodinium minutum and Symbiodinium kawagutii and eukaryote model systems as well as transcriptomes from other dinoflagellates. Comparative analyses of genome and transcriptome protein sets show that all dinoflagellates, not only Symbiodinium, possess significantly more transmembrane transporters involved in the exchange of amino acids, lipids, and glycerol than other eukaryotes. Importantly, we find that only Symbiodinium harbor an extensive transporter repertoire associated with the provisioning of carbon and nitrogen. Analyses of these transporters show species-specific expansions, which provides a genomic basis to explain differential compatibilities to an array of hosts and environments, and highlights the putative importance of gene duplications as an evolutionary mechanism in dinoflagellates and Symbiodinium.

  12. A skeleton for distributed work pools in Eden

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dieterle, Mischa; Berthold, Jost; Loogen, Rita

    2010-01-01

    the worker processes. The latter are arranged in a ring topology and exchange additional channels to shortcut communication paths. The skeleton is suited for different types of algorithms, namely simple data parallel ones and standard tree search algorithms like backtracking, and using a global state...

  13. A Practical Introduction to Skeletons for the Plant Sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Bucksch

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Before the availability of digital photography resulting from the invention of charged couple devices in 1969, the measurement of plant architecture was a manual process either on the plant itself or on traditional photographs. The introduction of cheap digital imaging devices for the consumer market enabled the wide use of digital images to capture the shape of plant networks such as roots, tree crowns, or leaf venation. Plant networks contain geometric traits that can establish links to genetic or physiological characteristics, support plant breeding efforts, drive evolutionary studies, or serve as input to plant growth simulations. Typically, traits are encoded in shape descriptors that are computed from imaging data. Skeletons are one class of shape descriptors that are used to describe the hierarchies and extent of branching and looping plant networks. While the mathematical understanding of skeletons is well developed, their application within the plant sciences remains challenging because the quality of the measurement depends partly on the interpretation of the skeleton. This article is meant to bridge the skeletonization literature in the plant sciences and related technical fields by discussing best practices for deriving diameters and approximating branching hierarchies in a plant network.

  14. Protistan Skeletons: A Geologic History of Evolution and Constraint

    OpenAIRE

    Knoll, Andrew Herbert; Kotrc, Benjamin

    2015-01-01

    The tests and scales formed by protists may be the epitome of lightweight bioconstructions in nature. Skeletal biomineralization is widespread among eukaryotes, but both predominant mineralogy and stratigraphic history differ between macroscopic and microscopic organisms. Among animals and macroscopic algae, calcium minerals, especially carbonates, predominate in skeleton formation, with most innovations in skeletal biomineralization concentrated in and around the Cambrian Period. In contrast...

  15. Multi-Kinect Skeleton Fusion for Enactive Games

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Støvring, Nikolaj Marimo; Kaspersen, Esbern Torgard; Korsholm, Jeppe Milling

    2016-01-01

    We present a procedural method and an implementation of multi-Kinect skeleton fusion on Unity environment. Our method calibrates two Kinects by combining the relative coordinates of a user’s torso onto a single coordinate system. The method is tested with a small number of participants in scenari...

  16. Learning about Skeletons and Other Organ Systems of Vertebrate Animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tunnicliffe, Sue Dale; Reiss, Michael

    1999-01-01

    Describes students' (n=175) understandings of the structure of animal (including human) skeletons and the internal organs found in them. Finds that older students have a better knowledge of animals' internal anatomies, although knowledge of human internal structure is significantly better than knowledge of rat, bird, and fish internal structure.…

  17. CASE REPORT CAS CAS A rare appendicular skeleton ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    rare in solitary enchondromas of the hands and feet.3. We present a rare case of appendicular skeleton ... sive swelling of the left index finger, with occasional pain. The patient had recently developed bleeding ... demonstrated in the bones of either feet or bones of the right hand. A CT scan with contrast of the left hand was ...

  18. The skeleton of postmetamorphic echinoderms in a changing world.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubois, Philippe

    2014-06-01

    Available evidence on the impact of acidification and its interaction with warming on the skeleton of postmetamorphic (juvenile and adult) echinoderms is reviewed. Data are available on sea urchins, starfish, and brittle stars in 33 studies. Skeleton growth of juveniles of all sea urchin species studied so far is affected from pH 7.8 to 7.6 in seawater, values that are expected to be reached during the 21st century. Growth in adult sea urchins (six species studied) is apparently only marginally affected at seawater pH relevant to this century. The interacting effect of temperature differed according to studies. Juvenile starfish as well as adults seem to be either not impacted or even boosted by acidification. Brittle stars show moderate effects at pH below or equal to 7.4. Dissolution of the body wall skeleton is unlikely to be a major threat to sea urchins. Spines, however, due to their exposed position, are more prone to this threat, but their regeneration abilities can probably ensure their maintenance, although this could have an energetic cost and induce changes in resource allocation. No information is available on skeleton dissolution in starfish, and the situation in brittle stars needs further assessment. Very preliminary evidence indicates that mechanical properties in sea urchins could be affected. So, although the impact of ocean acidification on the skeleton of echinoderms has been considered as a major threat from the first studies, we need a better understanding of the induced changes, in particular the functional consequences of growth modifications and dissolution related to mechanical properties. It is suggested to focus studies on these aspects. © 2014 Marine Biological Laboratory.

  19. THE SKELETON SPACE: A FINITE SET OF ORGANIC DESIGNS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, R D K; Reif, W-E

    1993-04-01

    The structures of animal skeletons converge repeatedly on a limited number of architectural designs that can be constructed by growing organisms and that are functionally viable, although often not optimal. Properties of materials, construction rules that determine patterns of development, and physical constraints exerted by the requirements of function suggest that organic structure must necessarily approach these recurrent elements of design. A set of potential designs for the elements of animal skeletons is derived in terms of geometric and construction rules and the properties of materials. Skeletons of actual living and extinct organisms are matched with the possibilities defined within this theoretical morphospace. This provides a metric of skeletal complexity and of the extent to which various groups of animals have been able to exploit the range of possibilities of organic structure. These analyses show that the most evolutionarily advanced animals within a given phylum do not have the most complex skeletons; that arthropods are less morphologically diverse than vertebrates and molluscs; that the physical constraints of life on land and in the air substantially limit the variety of skeletal structures suitable for life in these environments; and that overall the range of possible skeletal designs has been very fully exploited by living and extinct organisms. These results strongly support the hypothesis that the essential elements of organic design are inherent in the material properties of the universe. The organizational properties of animal skeletons suggest that their design elements are fixed point attractors, structures that we characterize as topological attractors that evolution cannot avoid. © 1993 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  20. Bisdioxycalamenene: A Bis-Sesquiterpene from the Soft Coral Rhytisma fulvum fulvum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuval J. Trifman

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available A dichloromethane extract of the soft coral Rhytisma fulvum fulvum collected in Madagascar afforded a novel compound possessing an unprecedented pentacyclic skeleton, bisdioxycalamenene (1, as well as seven known sesquiterpenes. The structures of the compounds were elucidated using 1D and 2D NMR techniques, as well as high-resolution mass spectrometry. The absolute configuration of 1 was determined using X-ray diffraction analysis and anomalous dispersion effects. The structure elucidation and a possible biogenesis of the compound are discussed.

  1. Out of their depth? Isolated deep populations of the cosmopolitan coral Desmophyllum dianthus may be highly vulnerable to environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Karen J; Rowden, Ashley A; Williams, Alan; Häussermann, Vreni

    2011-01-01

    Deep sea scleractinian corals will be particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, facing loss of up to 70% of their habitat as the Aragonite Saturation Horizon (below which corals are unable to form calcium carbonate skeletons) rises. Persistence of deep sea scleractinian corals will therefore rely on the ability of larvae to disperse to, and colonise, suitable shallow-water habitat. We used DNA sequence data of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS), the mitochondrial ribosomal subunit (16S) and mitochondrial control region (MtC) to determine levels of gene flow both within and among populations of the deep sea coral Desmophyllum dianthus in SE Australia, New Zealand and Chile to assess the ability of corals to disperse into different regions and habitats. We found significant genetic subdivision among the three widely separated geographic regions consistent with isolation and limited contemporary gene flow. Furthermore, corals from different depth strata (shallow 1500 m) even on the same or nearby seamounts were strongly differentiated, indicating limited vertical larval dispersal. Genetic differentiation with depth is consistent with the stratification of the Subantarctic Mode Water, Antarctic Intermediate Water, the Circumpolar Deep and North Pacific Deep Waters in the Southern Ocean, and we propose that coral larvae will be retained within, and rarely migrate among, these water masses. The apparent absence of vertical larval dispersal suggests deep populations of D. dianthus are unlikely to colonise shallow water as the aragonite saturation horizon rises and deep waters become uninhabitable. Similarly, assumptions that deep populations will act as refuges for shallow populations that are impacted by activities such as fishing or mining are also unlikely to hold true. Clearly future environmental management strategies must consider both regional and depth-related isolation of deep-sea coral populations.

  2. Out of their depth? Isolated deep populations of the cosmopolitan coral Desmophyllum dianthus may be highly vulnerable to environmental change.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen J Miller

    Full Text Available Deep sea scleractinian corals will be particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, facing loss of up to 70% of their habitat as the Aragonite Saturation Horizon (below which corals are unable to form calcium carbonate skeletons rises. Persistence of deep sea scleractinian corals will therefore rely on the ability of larvae to disperse to, and colonise, suitable shallow-water habitat. We used DNA sequence data of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS, the mitochondrial ribosomal subunit (16S and mitochondrial control region (MtC to determine levels of gene flow both within and among populations of the deep sea coral Desmophyllum dianthus in SE Australia, New Zealand and Chile to assess the ability of corals to disperse into different regions and habitats. We found significant genetic subdivision among the three widely separated geographic regions consistent with isolation and limited contemporary gene flow. Furthermore, corals from different depth strata (shallow 1500 m even on the same or nearby seamounts were strongly differentiated, indicating limited vertical larval dispersal. Genetic differentiation with depth is consistent with the stratification of the Subantarctic Mode Water, Antarctic Intermediate Water, the Circumpolar Deep and North Pacific Deep Waters in the Southern Ocean, and we propose that coral larvae will be retained within, and rarely migrate among, these water masses. The apparent absence of vertical larval dispersal suggests deep populations of D. dianthus are unlikely to colonise shallow water as the aragonite saturation horizon rises and deep waters become uninhabitable. Similarly, assumptions that deep populations will act as refuges for shallow populations that are impacted by activities such as fishing or mining are also unlikely to hold true. Clearly future environmental management strategies must consider both regional and depth-related isolation of deep-sea coral populations.

  3. Histological observations in the Hawaiian reef coral, Porites compressa, affected by Porites bleaching with tissue loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudek, M; Work, T M; Aeby, G S; Davy, S K

    2012-10-01

    The scleractinian finger coral Porites compressa is affected by the coral disease Porites bleaching with tissue loss (PBTL). This disease initially manifests as bleaching of the coenenchyme (tissue between polyps) while the polyps remain brown with eventual tissue loss and subsequent algal overgrowth of the bare skeleton. Histopathological investigation showed a loss of symbiont and melanin-containing granular cells which was more pronounced in the coenenchyme than the polyps. Cell counts confirmed a 65% reduction in symbiont density. Tissue loss was due to tissue fragmentation and necrosis in affected areas. In addition, a reduction in putative bacterial aggregate densities was found in diseased samples but no potential pathogens were observed. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Bioactive Compounds from a Gorgonian Coral Echinomuricea sp. (Plexauridae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jih-Jung Chen

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available A new labdane-type diterpenoid, echinolabdane A (1, and a new sterol, 6-epi-yonarasterol B (2, were isolated from a gorgonian coral identified as Echinomuricea sp. The structures of metabolites 1 and 2 were elucidated by spectroscopic methods. Echinolabdane A (1 possesses a novel tetracyclic skeleton with an oxepane ring jointed to an α,β-unsaturated-γ-lactone ring by a hemiketal moiety, and this compound is the first labdane-type diterpenoid to be obtained from marine organisms belonging to the phylum Cnidaria. 6-epi-Yonarasterol B (2 is the first steroid derivative to be isolated from gorgonian coral belonging to the genus Echinomuricea, and this compound displayed significant inhibitory effects on the generation of superoxide anions and the release of elastase by human neutrophils.

  5. Coral diseases and bleaching on Colombian Caribbean coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navas-Camacho, Raúl; Gil-Agudelo, Diego Luis; Rodríguez-Ramírez, Alberto; Reyes-Nivia, María Catalina; Garzón-Ferreira, Jaime

    2010-05-01

    Since 1998 the National Monitoring System for the Coral Reefs of Colombia (SIMAC) has monitored the occurrence of coral bleaching and diseases in some Colombian coral reefs (permanent stations at San Andres Island, Rosario Islands, Tayrona, San Bernardo Islands and Urabá). The main purpose is to evaluate their health status and to understand the factors that have been contributing to their decline. To estimate these occurrences, annual surveys in 126 permanent belt transects (10 x 2m) with different depth intervals (3-6 meters, 9-12 meters and 15-18 meters) are performed at all reef sites. Data from the 1998-2004 period, revealed that San Andrés Island had many colonies with diseases (38.9 colonies/m2), and Urabá had high numbers with bleaching (54.4 colonies/m2). Of the seven reported coral diseases studied, Dark Spots Disease (DSD), and White Plague Disease (WPD) were noteworthy because they occurred in all Caribbean monitored sites, and because of their high interannual infection incidence. Thirty five species of scleractinian corals were affected by at least one disease and a high incidence of coral diseases on the main reef builders is documented. Bleaching was present in 34 species. During the whole monitoring period, Agaricia agaricites and Siderastrea siderea were the species most severely affected by DSD and bleaching, respectively. Diseases on species such as Agaricia fragilis, A. grahamae, A. humilis, Diploria clivosa, Eusmilia fastigiata, Millepora complanata, and Mycetophyllia aliciae are recorded for first time in Colombia. We present bleaching and disease incidences, kinds of diseases, coral species affected, reef localities studied, depth intervals of surveys, and temporal (years) variation for each geographic area. This variation makes difficult to clearly determine defined patterns or general trends for monitored reefs. This is the first long-term study of coral diseases and bleaching in the Southwestern Caribbean, and one of the few long

  6. Nitrification in reef corals

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Wafar, M.V.M.; Wafar, S.; David, J.J.

    (Taube 1970; Linck 1976). This stability of the hy- dration ion sphere imposes limitations on the mechanism of electron transfer reac- tions. The solubility of Cr(OH), (s) is about 400 nM at pH 8.5 and is controlled by the Cr(OH),+ and Cr... pho- tosynthesis (Olson cited by Kaplan 1983). Because our experiments were run in the 725 726 Notes Table 1. Production rates of NH,’ and N03- [nmol (mg coral tissue N)-’ h-l] with and without N-Serve addition (mean i 1 SD). Treatment Control...

  7. Coral reef protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Showstack, Randy

    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced the establishment on 13 November of the first U.S. zone to protect a sensitive coral reef area from potential damage by ships.The Florida Keys' Particularly Sensitive Sea Area, just one of a handful of such areas globally, has been designated by the International Maritime Organization, a specialized agency of the United Nations. The area protects a zone of more than 3,000 square nautical miles stretching from the Biscayne National Park to the Dry Tortugas.

  8. Improving the accuracy and precision of TIMS U-series ages of modern corals from the Great Barrier Reef, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Tara; Zhao, Jian-Xin; Feng, Yuexing; Done, Terry; Jupiter, Stacy; Lough, Janice; Matson, Eric; Pandolfi, John; Roff, George

    2010-05-01

    The main limiting factor in obtaining precise and accurate Uranium-series ages of modern corals (e.g. since European settlement of northern Australia around 1850 AD), is the ability to constrain and correct for initial or non-radiogenic 230Th. This is becoming particularly important in paleoecological research where accurate chronologies are required to pinpoint changes in community structure and the timing of mortality events in order to identify possible drivers. In this study, thermal ionisation mass spectrometry (TIMS) Uranium-series dating of 61 samples collected from living and non-living Porites spp. from the near shore region of the GBR was performed to spatially constrain initial 230Th/232Th (230Th/232Th0) variability. In the living Porites corals, the majority of 230Th/232Th0 values were higher than the bulk-Earth value (~4.4×10-6) generally assumed for non-radiogenic 230Th corrections where the primary source of initial thorium is terrestrially derived. Despite samples being taken from regions adjacent to contrasting levels of land modification, no apparent difference was found in 230Th/232Th0 between regions exposed to varying levels of sedimentation during runoff events. However, 230Th/232Th0 variability is evident between reefs within each region. Overall, most samples across the entire region give 230Th/232Th0 values in the range of 6±1×10-6. An examination of 232Th/238U versus 230Th/238U from living and non-living corals revealed mainly two components contributing to initial 230Th in the non-living coral samples. High 232Th concentrations found in the majority of non-living coral samples suggest that a significant amount of Th may have been incorporated into the coral skeleton through post-mortem non-carbonate sediment infiltration. The results of this study demonstrate that accurate U-series ages cannot be achieved where single non-radiogenic thorium correction values are used interchangeably for samples taken from different hydrological

  9. An Interactive Exhibition about Animal Skeletons: Did the Visitors Learn Any Zoology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tunnicliffe, Sue Dale; Laterveer-de Beer, Manon

    2002-01-01

    Explores museum visitors' understanding of skeleton exhibits and whether such exhibits increase their understanding of the zoology displayed. The exhibition under study focused on the diversity of vertebrae skeletons which were arranged according to the mode of locomotion. (DDR)

  10. Physiological responses and lipid storage of the coral Lophelia pertusa at varying food density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baussant, Thierry; Nilsen, Marianne; Ravagnan, Elisa; Westerlund, Stig; Ramanand, Sreerekha

    2017-01-01

    Despite the importance of the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa to deep-sea reef ecosystem functioning, current knowledge of key physiological responses to available food resources is scarce. Scenarios with varying food density may help to understand how corals deal with seasonal variations in the dark ocean and might be used to study consequences of anthropogenic activities potentially affecting food availability. Thus, the physiological responses of L. pertusa to varying food (Artemia salina nauplii) concentration, ranging from 20% to 300% of carbon equivalent turned over by basal coral respiration, were investigated. A starvation group was also included. Measurements of respiration, growth, mucus production, and energy reserves (storage fatty acids) were performed at several time intervals over 26 weeks. In general, data showed a stronger effect of experimental time on measured responses, but no significant influence of food density treatment. In starved corals, respiration rate declined to 52% of initial respiration, while skeleton growth rate was maintained at the same rate as Artemia-fed corals throughout the investigation. Mucus production measured as the sum of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and particulate organic carbon (POC) was also similar across food treatments, but POC production exceeded that of DOC at the highest food density. No marked effect was observed on storage fatty acids. These results confirm that L. pertusa is highly resilient to environmental conditions with suboptimal food densities over a time scale of months. Regulation of several physiological processes, including respiration and mucus production, possibly in combination with an opportunistic feeding strategy, contributed to this tolerance to maintain viable corals. Thus, it appears that L. pertusa is well adapted to life in the deep sea.

  11. Feedbacks Between Wave Energy And Declining Coral Reef Structure: Implications For Coastal Morphodynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grady, A. E.; Jenkins, C. J.; Moore, L. J.; Potts, D. C.; Burgess, P. M.; Storlazzi, C. D.; Elias, E.; Reidenbach, M. A.

    2013-12-01

    The incident wave energy dissipated by the structural complexity and bottom roughness of coral reef ecosystems, and the carbonate sediment produced by framework-building corals, provide natural shoreline protection and nourishment, respectively. Globally, coral reef ecosystems are in decline as a result of ocean warming and acidification, which is exacerbated by chronic regional stressors such as pollution and disease. As a consequence of declining reef health, many reef ecosystems are experiencing reduced coral cover and shifts to dominance by macroalgae, resulting in a loss of rugosity and thus hydrodynamic roughness. As coral reef architecture is compromised and carbonate skeletons are eroded, wave energy dissipation and sediment transport patterns--along with the carbonate sediment budget of the coastal environment--may be altered. Using a Delft3D numerical model of the south-central Molokai, Hawaii, fringing reef, we simulate the effects of changing reef states on wave energy and sediment transport. To determine the temporally-varying effects of biotic and abiotic stressors such as storms and bleaching on the reef structure and carbonate production, we couple Delft3D with CarboLOT, a model that simulates growth and competition of carbonate-producing organisms. CarboLOT is driven by the Lotka-Volterra population ecology equations and niche suitability principles, and accesses the CarboKB database for region-specific, carbonate-producing species information on growth rates, reproduction patterns, habitat suitability, as well as organism geometries. Simulations assess how changing reef states--which alter carbonate sediment production and reef morphology and thus hydrodynamic roughness--impact wave attenuation and sediment transport gradients along reef-fronted beaches. Initial results suggest that along fringing reefs having characteristics similar to the Molokai fringing reef, projected sea level rise will likely outpace coral reef accretion, and the increased

  12. Footprint of Deepwater Horizon blowout impact to deep-water coral communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Charles R.; Hsing, Pen-Yuan; Kaiser, Carl L.; Yoerger, Dana R.; Roberts, Harry H.; Shedd, William W.; Cordes, Erik E.; Shank, Timothy M.; Berlet, Samantha P.; Saunders, Miles G.; Larcom, Elizabeth A.; Brooks, James M.

    2014-01-01

    On April 20, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) blowout occurred, releasing more oil than any accidental spill in history. Oil release continued for 87 d and much of the oil and gas remained in, or returned to, the deep sea. A coral community significantly impacted by the spill was discovered in late 2010 at 1,370 m depth. Here we describe the discovery of five previously unknown coral communities near the Macondo wellhead and show that at least two additional coral communities were impacted by the spill. Although the oil-containing flocullent material that was present on corals when the first impacted community was discovered was largely gone, a characteristic patchy covering of hydrozoans on dead portions of the skeleton allowed recognition of impacted colonies at the more recently discovered sites. One of these communities was 6 km south of the Macondo wellhead and over 90% of the corals present showed the characteristic signs of recent impact. The other community, 22 km southeast of the wellhead between 1,850 and 1,950 m depth, was more lightly impacted. However, the discovery of this site considerably extends the distance from Macondo and depth range of significant impact to benthic macrofaunal communities. We also show that most known deep-water coral communities in the Gulf of Mexico do not appear to have been acutely impacted by the spill, although two of the newly discovered communities near the wellhead apparently not impacted by the spill have been impacted by deep-sea fishing operations. PMID:25071200

  13. Recovery of Seamount Precious Coral Beds From Heavy Trawling Disturbance with Links to Carbonate Chemistry Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roark, E. B.; Baco-Taylor, A.; Morgan, N. B.; Shamberger, K.; Miller, K.; Brooks, J.

    2016-12-01

    Increasing anthropogenic impacts in the deep sea make studies of resilience and recovery time critical, with deep-sea hard-substrate habitats and large-scale disturbances having received little attention. Seamount hard-substrate habitats in particular are thought to have low resilience due to the slow growth rates and recruitment limitations of key structure-forming taxa. Seamounts of the far Northwestern Hawaiian Islands and Emperor Chain have had some of the heaviest trawl impacts in the world, from both fish and precious coral fisheries, and include sites that are still trawled and recovering ones that have been protected since establishment of the EEZ in 1977. To test the hypothesis of low resilience we compare these impacted seamounts to untrawled sites. We used the AUV Sentry in 2014 and 2015 to image nine features (three per "treatment") and analyze for substrate and visible megafauna. Sites in the "still trawled" treatment were characterized by extensive areas of bare substrate with abundant trawl scars. Sites in the "recovering" and "never trawled" locations had abundant megafauna in hard substrate areas. Initial comparisons of transects at 700m depth for three sites indicate that Yuryaku in the "still trawled" treatment had lower diversity and abundance of megafauna compared to the "recovering" and "never trawled" locations with a dominance of sea urchins. The "recovering" and "never trawled" sites were dominated by cnidarians, fishes, and echinoderms, but differed in dominant species, diversity, abundances and occurrence of dead coral skeletons. These preliminary results suggest that the recovering sites have not returned to a pre-impact community type in the 38 years since they were trawled. The megafauna distribution, in particular that of deep-sea corals, was compared to environmental water column variables at the study sites across the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Deep-sea corals with calcium carbonate skeletons were found living below the

  14. New perspectives on ecological mechanisms affecting coral recruitment on reefs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ritson-Williams, R.; Arnold, S.N.; Fogarty, N.D.; Steneck, R.S.; Vermeij, M.J.A.; Paul, V.J.

    2009-01-01

    Coral mortality has increased in recent decades, making coral recruitment more important than ever in sustaining coral reef ecosystems and contributing to their resilience. This review summarizes existing information on ecological factors affecting scleractinian coral recruitment. Successful

  15. Computing the carbonate chemistry of the coral calcifying medium and its response to ocean acidification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raybaud, Virginie; Tambutté, Sylvie; Ferrier-Pagès, Christine; Reynaud, Stéphanie; Venn, Alexander A; Tambutté, Éric; Nival, Paul; Allemand, Denis

    2017-07-07

    Critical to determining vulnerability or resilience of reef corals to Ocean Acidification (OA) is a clearer understanding of the extent to which corals can control carbonate chemistry in their Extracellular Calcifying Medium (ECM) where the CaCO 3 skeleton is produced. Here, we employ a mathematical framework to calculate ECM aragonite saturation state (Ω arag.(ECM) ) and carbonate system ion concentration using measurements of calcification rate, seawater characteristics (temperature, salinity and pH) and ECM pH (pH (ECM) ). Our calculations of ECM carbonate chemistry at current-day seawater pH, indicate that Ω arag.(ECM) ranges from ∼10 to 38 (mean 20.41), i.e. about 5 to 6-fold higher than seawater. Accordingly, Dissolved Inorganic Carbon (DIC) and Total Alkalinity (TA) were calculated to be around 3 times higher in the ECM than in seawater. We also assessed the effects of acidification on ECM chemical properties of the coral Stylophora pistillata. At reduced seawater pH our calculations indicate that Ω arag.(ECM) remains almost constant. DIC (ECM) and TA (ECM) gradually increase as seawater pH declines, reaching values about 5 to 6-fold higher than in seawater, respectively for DIC and TA. We propose that these ECM characteristics buffer the effect of acidification and explain why certain corals continue to produce CaCO 3 even when seawater chemistry is less favourable. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Adaptation of cyanobacteria to the sulfide-rich microenvironment of black band disease of coral.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, Jamie L; Richardson, Laurie L

    2009-02-01

    Black band disease (BBD) is a cyanobacteria-dominated microbial mat that migrates across living coral colonies lysing coral tissue and leaving behind exposed coral skeleton. The mat is sulfide-rich due to the presence of sulfate-reducing bacteria, integral members of the BBD microbial community, and the sulfide they produce is lethal to corals. The effect of sulfide, normally toxic to cyanobacteria, on the photosynthetic capabilities of five BBD cyanobacterial isolates of the genera Geitlerinema (3), Leptolyngbya (1), and Oscillatoria (1) and six non-BBD cyanobacteria of the genera Leptolyngbya (3), Pseudanabaena (2), and Phormidium (1) was examined. Photosynthetic experiments were performed by measuring the photoincorporation of [(14)C] NaHCO(3) under the following conditions: (1) aerobic (no sulfide), (2) anaerobic with 0.5 mM sulfide, and (3) anaerobic with 0.5 mM sulfide and 10 microM 3-(3',4'-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea (DCMU). All five BBD cyanobacterial isolates tolerated sulfide by conducting sulfide-resistant oxygenic photosynthesis. Five of the non-BBD cyanobacterial isolates did not tolerate sulfide, although one Pseudanabaena isolate continued to photosynthesize in the presence of sulfide at a considerably reduced rate. None of the isolates conducted anoxygenic photosynthesis with sulfide as an electron donor. This is the first report on the physiology of a culture of Oscillatoria sp. found globally in BBD.

  17. Multi-species Coral Sr/Ca-Based Sea-Surface Temperature Reconstruction Using Orbicella faveolata and Siderastrea siderea from Dry Tortugas National Park, FL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flannery, J. A.; Richey, J. N.; Thirumalai, K.; Poore, R. Z.

    2015-12-01

    Massive coral skeletons provide an important geologic archive of climate information over the past several centuries, due to their annual banding patterns and longevity. The ratio of strontium to calcium (Sr/Ca) in coral skeletons is dependent on the temperature of the seawater at the time of growth and, therefore, provides a powerful proxy of historic sea-surface temperature (SST). This study used cores from two modern coral colonies—Orbicella faveolata (formerly Montastraea faveolata) and Siderastrea siderea—collected from the Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida (DRTO), located in the southern Gulf of Mexico. The corals were subsampled at monthly resolution and Sr/Ca determinations were made using ICP-OES. Sr/Ca was calibrated to SST using previously-published calibration equations specific to each species. Both the O. faveolata (1893-2008) and S. siderea (1837-2012) records have well-defined annual cycles of Sr/Ca, which suggest a seasonal SST range of ~10-15°C: a range consistent with in situ instrumental SST records from DRTO. Our reconstructions of mean annual Sr/Ca-based SST and Sr/Ca variability from the two coral species show similar multi-decadal trends and strong coherency through overlapping time intervals. We investigated the intervals of divergence among the three independent DRTO records (two different species), and found that sudden drops in linear extension in S. siderea likely skewed the mean annual temperature record. This result underscores the importance of using multiple-coral geochemical records when reconstructing regional climate. A stacked record of SST derived from the three different coral colonies growing at DRTO from 1837-2008 showed a distinct trend toward cooler mean annual Sr/Ca-based SST from the late 1950s to the late 1960s, which coincides with a cooling trend found in several other Northern Hemisphere temperature reconstructions, and is likely linked to variability of the Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation.

  18. Apatite mineralization in elasmobranch skeletons via a polyphosphate intermediate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omelon, Sidney; Lacroix, Nicolas; Lildhar, Levannia; Variola, Fabio; Dean, Mason

    2014-05-01

    All vertebrate skeletons are stiffened with apatite, a calcium phosphate mineral. Control of apatite mineralization is essential to the growth and repair of the biology of these skeletons, ensuring that apatite is deposited in the correct tissue location at the desired time. The mechanism of this biochemical control remains debated, but must involve increasing the localized apatite saturation state. It was theorized in 1923 that alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity provides this control mechanism by increasing the inorganic phosphate (Pi) concentration via dephosphorylation of phosphorylated molecules. The ALP substrate for biological apatite is not known. We propose that polyphosphates (polyPs) produced by mitochondria may be the substrate for biological apatite formation by ALP activity. PolyPs (PO3-)n, also known as condensed phosphates, represent a concentrated, bioavailable Pi-storage strategy. Mitochondria import Pi and synthesize phosphate polymers through an unknown biochemical mechanism. When chelated with calcium and/or other cations, the effective P-concentration of these neutrally charged, amorphous, polyP species can be very high (~ 0.5 M), without inducing phosphate mineral crystallization. This P-concentration in the low Pi-concentration biological environment offers a method of concentrating P well above an apatite supersaturation required for nucleation. Bone is the most studied mineralized skeletal tissue. However, locating and analyzing active mineralizing areas is challenging. We studied calcified cartilage skeletons of elasmobranch fishes (sharks, stingrays and relatives) to analyse the phosphate chemistry in this continually mineralizing skeleton. Although the majority of the elasmobranch skeleton is unmineralized cartilage, it is wrapped in an outer layer of mineralized tissue comprised of small tiles called tesserae. These calcified tesserae continually grow through the formation of new mineral on their borders. Co-localization of ALP and

  19. 76 FR 66273 - Snapper-Grouper Fishery Off the Southern Atlantic States and Coral and Coral Reefs Fishery in the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-26

    ... Atlantic States and Coral and Coral Reefs Fishery in the South Atlantic; Exempted Fishing Permit AGENCY... Plan (FMP) for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region and the FMP for Coral, Coral...

  20. Local stressors reduce coral resilience to bleaching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carilli, Jessica E; Norris, Richard D; Black, Bryan A; Walsh, Sheila M; McField, Melanie

    2009-07-22

    Coral bleaching, during which corals lose their symbiotic dinoflagellates, typically corresponds with periods of intense heat stress, and appears to be increasing in frequency and geographic extent as the climate warms. A fundamental question in coral reef ecology is whether chronic local stress reduces coral resistance and resilience from episodic stress such as bleaching, or alternatively promotes acclimatization, potentially increasing resistance and resilience. Here we show that following a major bleaching event, Montastraea faveolata coral growth rates at sites with higher local anthropogenic stressors remained suppressed for at least 8 years, while coral growth rates at sites with lower stress recovered in 2-3 years. Instead of promoting acclimatization, our data indicate that background stress reduces coral fitness and resilience to episodic events. We also suggest that reducing chronic stress through local coral reef management efforts may increase coral resilience to global climate change.

  1. Lipid bodies in coral-dinoflagellate endosymbiosis: proteomic and ultrastructural studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Shao-En; Chen, Wan-Nan U; Chen, Hung-Kai; Lu, Chi-Yu; Mayfield, Anderson B; Fang, Lee-Shing; Chen, Chii-Shiarng

    2011-09-01

    Gastrodermal lipid bodies (LBs) are organelles involved in the regulation of the mutualistic endosymbiosis between reef-building corals and their dinoflagellate endosymbionts (genus Symbiodinium). As their molecular composition remains poorly defined, we herein describe the first gastrodermal LB proteome and examine in situ morphology of LBs in order to provide insight into their structure and function. After tissue separation of the tentacles of the stony coral Euphyllia glabrescens, buoyant LBs of the gastroderm encompassing a variety of sizes (0.5-4 μm in diameter) were isolated after two cycles of subcellular fractionation via stepwise sucrose gradient ultracentrifugation and detergent washing. The purity of the isolated LBs was demonstrated by their high degree of lipid enrichment and as well as the absence of contaminating proteins of the host cell and Symbiodinium. LB-associated proteins were then purified, subjected to SDS-PAGE, and identified by MS using an LC-nano-ESI-MS/MS. A total of 42 proteins were identified within eight functional groups, including metabolism, intracellular trafficking, the stress response/molecular modification and development. Ultrastructural analyses of LBs in situ showed that they exhibit defined morphological characteristics, including a high-electron density resulting from a distinct lipid composition from that of the lipid droplets of mammalian cells. Coral LBs were also characterized by the presence of numerous electron-transparent inclusions of unknown origin and composition. Both proteomic and ultrastructural observations seem to suggest that both Symbiodinium and host organelles, such as the ER, are involved in LB biogenesis. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  2. Axon Membrane Skeleton Structure is Optimized for Coordinated Sodium Propagation

    CERN Document Server

    Zhang, Yihao; Li, He; Tzingounis, Anastasios V; Lykotrafitis, George

    2016-01-01

    Axons transmit action potentials with high fidelity and minimal jitter. This unique capability is likely the result of the spatiotemporal arrangement of sodium channels along the axon. Super-resolution microscopy recently revealed that the axon membrane skeleton is structured as a series of actin rings connected by spectrin filaments that are held under entropic tension. Sodium channels also exhibit a periodic distribution pattern, as they bind to ankyrin G, which associates with spectrin. Here, we elucidate the relationship between the axon membrane skeleton structure and the function of the axon. By combining cytoskeletal dynamics and continuum diffusion modeling, we show that spectrin filaments under tension minimize the thermal fluctuations of sodium channels and prevent overlap of neighboring channel trajectories. Importantly, this axon skeletal arrangement allows for a highly reproducible band-like activation of sodium channels leading to coordinated sodium propagation along the axon.

  3. Study of the crystallographic architecture of corals at the nanoscale by scanning transmission X-ray microscopy and transmission electron microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benzerara, Karim; Menguy, Nicolas; Obst, Martin; Stolarski, Jarosław; Mazur, Maciej; Tylisczak, Tolek; Brown, Gordon E; Meibom, Anders

    2011-07-01

    We have investigated the nanotexture and crystallographic orientation of aragonite in a coral skeleton using synchrotron-based scanning transmission X-ray microscopy (STXM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Polarization-dependent STXM imaging at 40-nm spatial resolution was used to obtain an orientation map of the c-axis of aragonite on a focused ion beam milled ultrathin section of a Porites coral. This imaging showed that one of the basic units of coral skeletons, referred to as the center of calcification (COC), consists of a cluster of 100-nm aragonite globules crystallographically aligned over several micrometers with a fan-like distribution and with the properties of single crystals at the mesoscale. The remainder of the skeleton consists of aragonite single-crystal fibers in crystallographic continuity with the nanoglobules comprising the COC. Our observation provides information on the nm-scale processes that led to biomineral formation in this sample. Importantly, the present study illustrates how the methodology described here, which combines HRTEM and polarization-dependent synchrotron-based STXM imaging, offers an interesting new approach for investigating biomineralizing systems at the nm-scale. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Coral Reef Protection Implementation Plan

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Lobel, Lisa

    2000-01-01

    This document identify policies and actions to implement the Department of Defense's responsibilities under Executive Order 13089 on Coral Reef Protection, and are a requirement of the interim Task...

  5. Coral reefs at the crossroads

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Hubbard, Dennis K; Rogers, Caroline S; Lipps, Jere H; Stanley, George D

    2016-01-01

    .... More than any other earth system, coral reefs sit at a disciplinary crossroads. Most recently, they have reached another crossroads - fundamental changes in their bio-physical structure greater than those of previous centuries or even millennia...

  6. The Difficulty of Sexing Skeletons from Unknown Populations

    OpenAIRE

    Ingrid Sierp; Maciej Henneberg

    2015-01-01

    Determination of sex from skeletal remains is performed using a number of methods developed by biological anthropology. They must be evaluated for consistency and for their performance in a forensic setting. Twenty skeletons of varied provenance had their sex determined by 15 existing methods of forensic anthropology (7 metric and 8 morphological). The methods were evaluated for their consistency in determination of sex. No single individual was identified as belonging to one sex exclusively....

  7. Advancing Ocean Monitoring Near Coral Reefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heron, Scott F.; Steinberg, Craig R.; Heron, Mal L.; Mantovanelli, Alessandra; Jaffrés, Jasmine B. D.; Skirving, William J.; McAllister, Felicity; Rigby, Paul; Wisdom, Daniel; Bainbridge, Scott

    2010-10-01

    Corals, the foundation of tropical marine ecosystems, exist in a symbiotic relationship with zooxanthellae (algae). The corals obtain much of their energy by consuming compounds derived from photosynthesis by these microorganisms; the microorganisms, which reside in the coral tissue, in turn use waste products from the corals to sustain photosynthesis. This symbiosis is very sensitive to subtle changes in environment, such as increased ocean acidity, temperature, and light. When unduly stressed, the colorful algae are expelled from the corals, causing the corals to “bleach” and potentially die [e.g., van Oppen and Lough, 2009].

  8. Predicting soil water content at - 33 kPa by pedotransfer functions in stoniness 1 soils in northeast Venezuela.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, M C; Viloria, J; Martínez-Casasnovas, J A; Valera, A; Lobo, D; Timm, L C; Pires, L F; Gabriels, D

    2018-02-22

    Soil water content is a key property in the study of water available for plants, infiltration, drainage, hydraulic conductivity, irrigation, plant water stress and solute movement. However, its measurement consumes time and, in the case of stony soils, the presence of stones difficult to determinate the water content. An alternative is the use of pedotransfer functions (PTFs), as models to predict these properties from readily available data. The present work shows a comparison of different widely used PTFs to estimate water content at-33 kPa (WR -33kPa ) in high stoniness soils. The work was carried out in the Caramacate River, an area of high interest because the frequent landslides worsen the quality of drinking water. The performance of all evaluated PTFs was compared with a PTF generated for the study area. Results showed that the Urach's PTF presented the best performance in relation to the others and could be used to estimate WR -33kPa in soils of Caramacate River basin. The calculated PTFs had a R 2 of 0.65. This was slightly higher than the R 2 of the Urach's PTF. The inclusion of the rock fragment volume could have the better results. The weak performance of the other PTFs could be related to the fact that the mountain soils of the basin are rich in 2:1 clay and high stoniness, which were not used as independent variables for PTFs to estimate the WR -33kPa .

  9. Suspended-sediment and turbidity responses to sediment and turbidity reduction projects in the Beaver Kill, Stony Clove Creek, and Warner Creek, Watersheds, New York, 2010–14

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siemion, Jason; McHale, Michael R.; Davis, Wae Danyelle

    2016-12-05

    Suspended-sediment concentrations (SSCs) and turbidity were monitored within the Beaver Kill, Stony Clove Creek, and Warner Creek tributaries to the upper Esopus Creek in New York, the main source of water to the Ashokan Reservoir, from October 1, 2010, through September 30, 2014. The purpose of the monitoring was to determine the effects of suspended-sediment and turbidity reduction projects (STRPs) on SSC and turbidity in two of the three streams; no STRPs were constructed in the Beaver Kill watershed. During the study period, four STRPs were completed in the Stony Clove Creek and Warner Creek watersheds. Daily mean SSCs decreased significantly for a given streamflow after the STRPs were completed. The most substantial decreases in daily mean SSCs were measured at the highest streamflows. Background SSCs, as measured in water samples collected in upstream reference stream reaches, in all three streams in this study were less than 5 milligrams per liter during low and high streamflows. Longitudinal stream sampling identified stream reaches with failing hillslopes in contact with the stream channel as the primary sediment sources in the Beaver Kill and Stony Clove Creek watersheds.

  10. Real-time skeleton tracking for embedded systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coleca, Foti; Klement, Sascha; Martinetz, Thomas; Barth, Erhardt

    2013-03-01

    Touch-free gesture technology is beginning to become more popular with consumers and may have a significant future impact on interfaces for digital photography. However, almost every commercial software framework for gesture and pose detection is aimed at either desktop PCs or high-powered GPUs, making mobile implementations for gesture recognition an attractive area for research and development. In this paper we present an algorithm for hand skeleton tracking and gesture recognition that runs on an ARM-based platform (Pandaboard ES, OMAP 4460 architecture). The algorithm uses self-organizing maps to fit a given topology (skeleton) into a 3D point cloud. This is a novel way of approaching the problem of pose recognition as it does not employ complex optimization techniques or data-based learning. After an initial background segmentation step, the algorithm is ran in parallel with heuristics, which detect and correct artifacts arising from insufficient or erroneous input data. We then optimize the algorithm for the ARM platform using fixed-point computation and the NEON SIMD architecture the OMAP4460 provides. We tested the algorithm with two different depth-sensing devices (Microsoft Kinect, PMD Camboard). For both input devices we were able to accurately track the skeleton at the native framerate of the cameras.

  11. Coral Reef Protection Implementation Plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-10-19

    island attracts the largest popula- . I tion of laysan albatross , 16 species of seabirds 4.1 (over twormillion birds), a variety of shore birds, the...clogs the coral’s feeding struc- Diego Garcia tures, eventually killing it. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE CORAL REEF POLICY STATEMENTS One of DoD’s earliest...tentacles. The fish returns the favor by chasing away other fishes that feed on the anemone. Certain species of clownfish live only with certain species

  12. How NASA KSC Controls Interfaces with the use of Motion Skeletons and Product Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Corey

    2013-01-01

    This presentation will show how NASA KSC controls interfaces for Modular Product Architecture (MPA) using Locator Skeletons, Interface Skeletons, and Product Structure, to be combined together within a Motion Skeleton. The user will learn how to utilize skeleton models to communicate interface data, as successfully done at NASA KSC in their use of Motion Skeletons to control interfaces for multi-launch systems. There will be discussion of the methodology used to control design requirements through WTParts, and how to utilize product structure for non-CAD documents.

  13. Reconstructing coral calcification fluid dissolved inorganic carbon chemistry from skeletal boron: An exploration of potential controls on coral aragonite B/Ca.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allison, Nicola

    2017-08-01

    The boron geochemistry of coral skeletons reflects the dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) chemistry of the calcification fluid from which the skeletons precipitates and may be a valuable tool to investigate the effects of climate change on coral calcification. In this paper I calculate the predicted B/Ca of aragonite precipitating from seawater based fluids as a function of pH, [DIC] and [Ca2+]. I consider how different co-precipitating DIC species affect aragonite B/Ca and also estimate the impact of variations in the B(OH)4-/co-precipitating DIC aragonite partition coefficient (KD), which may be associated with changes in the DIC and Ca2+ chemistry of the calcification fluid. The coral skeletal B/Ca versus calcification fluid pH relationships reported previously can be reproduced by estimating B(OH)4- and co-precipitating DIC speciation as a function of pHCF and assuming that KD are constant i.e. unaffected by calcification fluid saturation state. Assuming that B(OH)4- co-precipitates with CO32-, then observed patterns can be reproduced by a fluid with approximately constant [DIC] i.e. increasing pHCF concentrates CO32-, as a function of DIC speciation. Assuming that B(OH)4- co-precipitates with HCO3- only or CO32- + HCO3- then the observed patterns can be reproduced if [DIC]CF and pHCF are positively related i.e. if DIC is increasingly concentrated in the calcification fluid at higher pHCF probably by CO2 diffusion into the calcification site.

  14. Microbial regulation in gorgonian corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, Laura R; Smith, Stephanie M; Downum, Kelsey R; Mydlarz, Laura D

    2012-06-01

    Gorgonian corals possess many novel natural products that could potentially mediate coral-bacterial interactions. Since many bacteria use quorum sensing (QS) signals to facilitate colonization of host organisms, regulation of prokaryotic cell-to-cell communication may represent an important bacterial control mechanism. In the present study, we examined extracts of twelve species of Caribbean gorgonian corals, for mechanisms that regulate microbial colonization, such as antibacterial activity and QS regulatory activity. Ethanol extracts of gorgonians collected from Puerto Rico and the Florida Keys showed a range of both antibacterial and QS activities using a specific Pseudomonas aeruginosa QS reporter, sensitive to long chain AHLs and a short chain N-acylhomoserine lactones (AHL) biosensor, Chromobacterium violaceium. Overall, the gorgonian corals had higher antimicrobial activity against non-marine strains when compared to marine strains. Pseudopterogorgia americana, Pseusopterogorgia acerosa, and Pseudoplexuara flexuosa had the highest QS inhibitory effect. Interestingly, Pseudoplexuara porosa extracts stimulated QS activity with a striking 17-fold increase in signal. The stimulation of QS by P. porosa or other elements of the holobiont may encourage colonization or recruitment of specific microbial species. Overall, these results suggest the presence of novel stimulatory QS, inhibitory QS and bactericidal compounds in gorgonian corals. A better understanding of these compounds may reveal insight into coral-microbial ecology and whether a therapeutic potential exists.

  15. Cryptobiota associated to dead Acropora palmata (Scleractinia: Acroporidae coral, Isla Grande, Colombian Caribbean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia K. Moreno-Forero

    1998-06-01

    Full Text Available Cryptobiota of dead fragments of five branches in live position and five fallen pieces of the coral Acropora palmata each one of approximate 1dm3, covered by filamentous algae were extracted from the north reef crest of Isla Grande (Colombian Caribbean, in April 1991. There were three groups of organisms according to size and position (on and within the coral: 1 mobile epibenthos, mainly microcrustaceans that live among the filamentous algae 2 boring microcryptobiota, located in the layer between the epilithic organisms and the coral skeleton itself and, 3 perforating macrocryptobionts that bore and penetrate the coral skeleton. Polychaetes, sipuncu-lids, mollusks and crustaceans were most abundant in the last group. There were no differences in macrocryptobiont composition between standing dead branches and fallen fragments. There was a large variation in total biomass and type and density of macro-cryptobionts, possibly associated to stochastic factors such as placement and thickness of branches and small scale variations in recruitmentLa criptobiota de diez fragmentos coralinos muertos de Acropora palmata, de 10 dm3 cada uno, cubiertos de algas filamentosas, se colectó en abril de 1991en la cresta arrecifal de Isla Grande (Caribe colombiano. Se halló tres grupos: 1 móviles epibentónicos asociados a las algas filamentosas y conformados principalmente por microcrustáceos; 2 microcriptobiontes perforantes, ubicados en la capa intermedia entre los organismos epilíticos y el esqueleto del coral y 3 macrocriptobiontes que perforan todo el cuerpo del esqueleto coralino (principalmente poliquetos, sipuncúlidos, moluscos y crustáceos. No se encontraron diferencias en la composición de los macrocriptobiontes que habitan los corales en posición de vida y los fragmentos caidos sobre el fondo. Se presentó una amplia variación en biomasa total, tipo y densidad de macrocriptobiontes, posiblemente asociada a factores estocásticos tales como la

  16. Coral and algal community primary succession on new vertical substrate at Rackham’s Cay, Port Royal, Jamaica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilo Trench

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Jamaica’s trans-shipment industry is amongst the largest in the Caribbean with 90% of trans-shipment activities occurring in Kingston Harbour. The eastern ship channel is populated with patch and fringing coral reefs. In 2002, approximately 20% of an originally sloping face of Rackham’s Cay, on the southern edge of the channel, was cut vertically to 18m and dredged to widen the channel. The successional changes on the newly created vertical limestone wall was assessed between 2009 and 2012 at 5m, 10m and 15m depths using bi-annual photographs of fixed 1 m² quadrats. Photographs were analyzed using Coral Point Count. No colonization of either algal or coralline species was observed at 15m. Initially calcareous and fleshy algae dominated at 5m but showed a gradual decrease over time. Calcareous algae dominated at 10m and increaseed gradually over the 4 years. Stony corals at both 5m and 10m had overall low cover and slow colonization; the shallower depth had more coverage (4.1% maximum in 2011. Siderastrea sidera -which dominated Rackham’s Cay before dredging- was consistently present in low coverage. Colonization by species of Acropora and Scolymia indicate slower but better succession at 10m. Ten years following dredging activities, colonization and recruitment have been slow but successful at 5m and 10m; species previously described as abundant lead the colonization. We recommend limiting coral relocation activities to depths not exceeding 10m.

  17. Coral calcification and ocean acidification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jokiel, Paul L.; Jury, Christopher P.; Kuffner, Ilsa B.

    2016-01-01

    Over 60 years ago, the discovery that light increased calcification in the coral plant-animal symbiosis triggered interest in explaining the phenomenon and understanding the mechanisms involved. Major findings along the way include the observation that carbon fixed by photosynthesis in the zooxanthellae is translocated to animal cells throughout the colony and that corals can therefore live as autotrophs in many situations. Recent research has focused on explaining the observed reduction in calcification rate with increasing ocean acidification (OA). Experiments have shown a direct correlation between declining ocean pH, declining aragonite saturation state (Ωarag), declining [CO32_] and coral calcification. Nearly all previous reports on OA identify Ωarag or its surrogate [CO32] as the factor driving coral calcification. However, the alternate “Proton Flux Hypothesis” stated that coral calcification is controlled by diffusion limitation of net H+ transport through the boundary layer in relation to availability of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC). The “Two Compartment Proton Flux Model” expanded this explanation and synthesized diverse observations into a universal model that explains many paradoxes of coral metabolism, morphology and plasticity of growth form in addition to observed coral skeletal growth response to OA. It is now clear that irradiance is the main driver of net photosynthesis (Pnet), which in turn drives net calcification (Gnet), and alters pH in the bulk water surrounding the coral. Pnet controls [CO32] and thus Ωarag of the bulk water over the diel cycle. Changes in Ωarag and pH lag behind Gnet throughout the daily cycle by two or more hours. The flux rate Pnet, rather than concentration-based parameters (e.g., Ωarag, [CO3 2], pH and [DIC]:[H+] ratio) is the primary driver of Gnet. Daytime coral metabolism rapidly removes DIC from the bulk seawater. Photosynthesis increases the bulk seawater pH while providing the energy that drives

  18. Changes in the Number of Symbionts and Symbiodinium Cell Pigmentation Modulate Differentially Coral Light Absorption and Photosynthetic Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim Scheufen

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available In order to understand the contribution of pigmented coral tissues to the extraordinary optical properties of the coral-symbiont-skeleton unit, we analyzed the associations between structural and optical traits for four coral species, which broadly differ in skeleton morphology, tissue thickness and in the variation of coral pigmentation, symbiont content, Symbiodinium dominant type and Symbiodinium cell pigmentation (Ci. Significant differences among species were found for the maximum capacity of light absorption (Amax and for the minimum pigmentation required to reach that maximum. The meandroid morphotype represented by Pseudodiploria strigosa showed a slightly lower Amax than the other three chalice-type species, while the thickest species, Montastraea cavernosa, required 2–3.5 times higher pigmentation to reach Amax. In contrast, Orbicella faveolata and Orbicella annularis, which were able to harbor high number of symbionts and achieve the highest photosynthetic rates per area, showed the largest abilities for light collection at decreasing symbiont densities, leading to a more fragile photophysiological condition under light and heat-stress. Holobiont photosynthesis was more dependent on Symbiodinium performance in the less populated organisms. At reduced pigmentation, we observed a similar non-linear increase in holobiont light absorption efficiency (a*Chla, which was differentially modulated by reductions in the number of symbionts and Symbiodinium Ci. For similar pigmentation, larger symbiont losses relative to Ci declines resulted in smaller increases in a*Chla. Two additional optical traits were used to characterize light absorption efficiency of Symbiodinium (a*sym and coral host (a*M. Optimization of a*sym was well represented by P. strigosa, whereas a*M was better optimized by O. annularis. The species with the largest symbiont content, O. faveolata, and with the thickest tissues, M. cavernosa, represented, respectively, less

  19. THE CONDITION OF CORAL REEFS IN SOUTH FLORIDA (2000) USING CORAL DISEASE AND BLEACHING AS INDICATORS

    Science.gov (United States)

    The destruction for coral reef habitats is occurring at unprecedented levels. Coral disease epizootics in the Southwestern Atlantic have lead to coral replacement by turf algae, prompting a call to classify some coral species as endangered. In addition, a massive bleaching event ...

  20. Vibrio Zinc-Metalloprotease Causes Photoinactivation of Coral Endosymbionts and Coral Tissue Lesions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sussman, Meir; Mieog, Jos C.; Doyle, Jason; Victor, Steven; Willis, Bette L.; Bourne, David G.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Coral diseases are emerging as a serious threat to coral reefs worldwide. Of nine coral infectious diseases, whose pathogens have been characterized, six are caused by agents from the family Vibrionacae, raising questions as to their origin and role in coral disease aetiology.

  1. Stable Isotope Signatures of Middle Palaeozoic Ahermatypic Rugose Corals - Deciphering Secondary Alteration, Vital Fractionation Effects, and Palaeoecological Implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakubowicz, Michal; Berkowski, Blazej; López Correa, Matthias; Jarochowska, Emilia; Joachimski, Michael; Belka, Zdzislaw

    2015-01-01

    This study investigates stable isotope signatures of five species of Silurian and Devonian deep-water, ahermatypic rugose corals, providing new insights into isotopic fractionation effects exhibited by Palaeozoic rugosans, and possible role of diagenetic processes in modifying their original isotopic signals. To minimize the influence of intraskeletal cements on the observed signatures, the analysed specimens included unusual species either devoid of large intraskeletal open spaces ('button corals': Microcyclus, Palaeocyclus), or typified by particularly thick corallite walls (Calceola). The corals were collected at four localities in the Holy Cross Mountains (Poland), Mader Basin (Morocco) and on Gotland (Sweden), representing distinct diagenetic histories and different styles of diagenetic alteration. To evaluate the resistance of the corallites to diagenesis, we applied various microscopic and trace element preservation tests. Distinct differences between isotopic compositions of the least-altered and most-altered skeleton portions emphasise a critical role of material selection for geochemical studies of Palaeozoic corals. The least-altered parts of the specimens show marine or near-marine stable isotope signals and lack positive correlation between δ13C and δ18O. In terms of isotopic fractionation mechanisms, Palaeozoic rugosans must have differed considerably from modern deep-water scleractinians, typified by significant depletion in both 18O and 13C, and pronounced δ13C-δ18O co-variance. The fractionation effects exhibited by rugosans seem similar rather to the minor isotopic effects typical of modern non-scleractinian corals (octocorals and hydrocorals). The results of the present study add to growing evidence for significant differences between Scleractinia and Rugosa, and agree with recent studies indicating that calcification mechanisms developed independently in these two groups of cnidarians. Consequently, particular caution is needed in using

  2. Stable Isotope Signatures of Middle Palaeozoic Ahermatypic Rugose Corals – Deciphering Secondary Alteration, Vital Fractionation Effects, and Palaeoecological Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakubowicz, Michal; Berkowski, Blazej; López Correa, Matthias; Jarochowska, Emilia; Joachimski, Michael; Belka, Zdzislaw

    2015-01-01

    This study investigates stable isotope signatures of five species of Silurian and Devonian deep-water, ahermatypic rugose corals, providing new insights into isotopic fractionation effects exhibited by Palaeozoic rugosans, and possible role of diagenetic processes in modifying their original isotopic signals. To minimize the influence of intraskeletal cements on the observed signatures, the analysed specimens included unusual species either devoid of large intraskeletal open spaces ('button corals': Microcyclus, Palaeocyclus), or typified by particularly thick corallite walls (Calceola). The corals were collected at four localities in the Holy Cross Mountains (Poland), Mader Basin (Morocco) and on Gotland (Sweden), representing distinct diagenetic histories and different styles of diagenetic alteration. To evaluate the resistance of the corallites to diagenesis, we applied various microscopic and trace element preservation tests. Distinct differences between isotopic compositions of the least-altered and most-altered skeleton portions emphasise a critical role of material selection for geochemical studies of Palaeozoic corals. The least-altered parts of the specimens show marine or near-marine stable isotope signals and lack positive correlation between δ13C and δ18O. In terms of isotopic fractionation mechanisms, Palaeozoic rugosans must have differed considerably from modern deep-water scleractinians, typified by significant depletion in both 18O and 13C, and pronounced δ13C-δ18O co-variance. The fractionation effects exhibited by rugosans seem similar rather to the minor isotopic effects typical of modern non-scleractinian corals (octocorals and hydrocorals). The results of the present study add to growing evidence for significant differences between Scleractinia and Rugosa, and agree with recent studies indicating that calcification mechanisms developed independently in these two groups of cnidarians. Consequently, particular caution is needed in using

  3. Effect of light and brine shrimp on skeletal δ 13C in the Hawaiian coral Porites compressa: a tank experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grottoli, Andréa G.

    2002-06-01

    Previous experimental fieldwork showed that coral skeletal δ13C values decreased when solar intensity was reduced, and increased in the absence of zooplankton. However, actual seasonal changes in solar irradiance levels are typically less pronounced than those used in the previous experiment and the effect of increases in the consumption of zooplankton in the coral diet on skeletal δ13C remains relatively unknown. In the present study, the effects of four different light and heterotrophy regimes on coral skeletal δ13C values were measured. Porites compressa corals were grown in outdoor flow-through tanks under 112%, 100%, 75%, and 50% light conditions at the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, Hawaii. In addition, corals were fed either zero, low, medium, or high concentrations of brine shrimp. Decreases in light from 100% resulted in significant decreases in δ13C that is most likely due to a corresponding decrease in photosynthesis. Increases in light to 112% also resulted in a decrease in δ13C values. This latter response may be a consequence of photoinhibition. The overall curved response in δ13C values was described by a significant quadratic function. Increases in brine shrimp concentrations resulted in increased skeletal δ13C levels. This unexpected outcome appears to be attributable to enhanced nitrogen supply associated with the brine shrimp diet which led to increased zooxanthellae concentrations, increased photosynthesis rates, and thus increased δ13C values. This result highlights the potential influence of nutrients from heterotrophically acquired carbon in maintaining the zooxanthellae-host symbiosis in balance. In addition, evidence is presented that suggests that coral skeletal growth and δ13C are decoupled. These results increase our knowledge of how light and heterotrophy affects the δ13C of coral skeletons.

  4. Deep-Sea Soft Coral Habitat Suitability

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Deep-sea corals, also known as cold water corals, create complex communities that provide habitat for a variety of invertebrate and fish species, such as grouper,...

  5. Coral Reef Ecosystems Monitoring Feature Service

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Coral Reef Ecosystem Monitoring GIS data service provides access to data collected in the Mariana Archipelago by the Coral Reef Ecosystem Program of the Pacific...

  6. AFSC/ABL: Coldwater coral growth

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Colonies of the gorgonian coral Calcigorgia spiculifera were tagged at three sites in Southeast Alaska, Little Port Walter, Tenakee Inlet, and Kelp Bay. The corals...

  7. Elkhorn and Staghorn Corals Critical Habitat

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data represent the critical habitat for elkhorn coral (Acropora palmata) and staghorn coral (A. cervicornis) as designated by 73 FR 72210, November 26, 2008,...

  8. Coral Reef Watch, Hotspots, 50 km

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NOAA Coral Reef Watch provides Coral Bleaching hotspot maps derived from NOAA's Polar Operational Environmental Satellites (POES). This data provides global area...

  9. EOP Temperature data for deep corals

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Thermographs were deployed opportunistically in patches of deep coral at depths greater than 300 m. Sites included the Makapuu precious coral bed, the Cross Seamount...

  10. Coral diseases and bleaching on Colombian Caribbean coral reefs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raúl Navas-Camacho

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Since 1998 the National Monitoring System for the Coral Reefs of Colombia (SIMAC has monitored the occurrence of coral bleaching and diseases in some Colombian coral reefs (permanent stations at San Andres Island, Rosario Islands, Tayrona, San Bernardo Islands and Urabá. The main purpose is to evaluate their health status and to understand the factors that have been contributing to their decline. To estimate these occurrences, annual surveys in 126 permanent belt transects (10x2m with different depth intervals (3-6 meters, 9-12 meters and 15-18 meters are performed at all reef sites. Data from the 1998-2004 period, revealed that San Andrés Island had many colonies with diseases (38.9 colonies/m2, and Urabá had high numbers with bleaching (54.4 colonies/m2. Of the seven reported coral diseases studied, Dark Spots Disease (DSD, and White Plague Disease (WPD were noteworthy because they occurred in all Caribbean monitored sites, and because of their high interannual infection incidence. Thirty five species of scleractinian corals were affected by at least one disease and a high incidence of coral diseases on the main reef builders is documented. Bleaching was present in 34 species. During the whole monitoring period, Agaricia agaricites and Siderastrea siderea were the species most severely affected by DSD and bleaching, respectively. Diseases on species such as Agaricia fragilis, A.grahamae, A. humilis, Diploria clivosa, Eusmilia fastigiata, Millepora complanata, and Mycetophyllia aliciae are recorded for first time in Colombia. We present bleaching and disease incidences, kinds of diseases, coral species affected, reef localities studied, depth intervals of surveys, and temporal (years variation for each geographic area. This variation makes difficult to clearly determine defined patterns or general trends for monitored reefs. This is the first long-term study of coral diseases and bleaching in the Southwestern Caribbean, and one of the few

  11. Applying New Methods to Diagnose Coral Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kellogg, Christina A.; Zawada, David G.

    2009-01-01

    Coral disease, one of the major causes of reef degradation and coral death, has been increasing worldwide since the 1970s, particularly in the Caribbean. Despite increased scientific study, simple questions about the extent of disease outbreaks and the causative agents remain unanswered. A component of the U.S. Geological Survey Coral Reef Ecosystem STudies (USGS CREST) project is focused on developing and using new methods to approach the complex problem of coral disease.

  12. Impact of Global Warming on Coral Reefs

    OpenAIRE

    Sirilak CHUMKIEW; Mullica JAROENSUTASINEE; Krisanadej JAROENSUTASINEE

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we review coral reef responses to climate variability and discuss the possible mechanisms by which climate impacts the coral reef ecosystem. Effects of oceanographic variables such as sea temperature, turbulence, salinity, and nutrients on the coral reef are discussed in terms of their influence on coral growth, reproduction, mortality, acclimation and adaptation. Organisms tend to be limited to specific thermal ranges with experimental findings showing that sufficient oxygen s...

  13. Ecological States and the Resilience of Coral Reefs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim McClanahan

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available We review the evidence for multiple ecological states and the factors that create ecological resilience in coral reef ecosystems. There are natural differences among benthic communities along gradients of water temperature, light, nutrients, and organic matter associated with upwelling-downwelling and onshore-offshore systems. Along gradients from oligotrophy to eutrophy, plant-animal symbioses tend to decrease, and the abundance of algae and heterotrophic suspension feeders and the ratio of organic to inorganic carbon production tend to increase. Human influences such as fishing, increased organic matter and nutrients, sediments, warm water, and transportation of xenobiotics and diseases are common causes of a large number of recently reported ecological shifts. It is often the interaction of persistent and multiple synergistic disturbances that causes permanent ecological transitions, rather than the succession of individual short-term disturbances. For example, fishing can remove top-level predators, resulting in the ecological release of prey such as sea urchins and coral-eating invertebrates. When sea urchins are not common because of unsuitable habitat, recruitment limitations, and diseases, and when overfishing removes herbivorous fish, frondose brown algae can dominate. Terrigenous sediments carried onto reefs as a result of increased soil erosion largely promote the dominance of turf or articulated green algae. Elevated nutrients and organic matter can increase internal eroders of reef substratum and a mixture of filamentous algae. Local conservation actions that attempt to reduce fishing and terrestrial influences promote the high production of inorganic carbon that is necessary for reef growth. However, global climate change threatens to undermine such actions because of increased bleaching and mortality caused by warm-water anomalies, weakened coral skeletons caused by reduced aragonite availability in reef waters, and increased

  14. Island Formation: Constructing a Coral Island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austin, Heather; Edd, Amelia

    2009-01-01

    The process of coral island formation is often difficult for middle school students to comprehend. Coral island formation is a dynamic process, and students should have the opportunity to experience this process in a synergistic context. The authors provide instructional guidelines for constructing a coral island. Students play an interactive role…

  15. Coral skeletal {delta}{sup 15}N reveals isotopic traces of an agricultural revolution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marion, Guy S. [Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States)]. E-mail: g.marion@uq.edu.au; Dunbar, Robert B. [Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States); Mucciarone, David A. [Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States); Kremer, James N. [Department of Marine Sciences, University of Connecticut at Avery Point, Groton, CT 06340 (United States); Lansing, J. Stephen [Department of Anthropology, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721 (United States); Arthawiguna, Alit [Installation for Agricultural Research (IP 2TP), Kotak Pos 3480, Denpasar, Bali (Indonesia)

    2005-09-01

    This study introduces a new method of tracing the history of nutrient loading in coastal oceans via {delta}{sup 15}N analysis of organic nitrogen preserved in the skeleton of the massive Porites coral. Four coral cores were collected in Bali, Indonesia, from reefs exposed to high levels of fertilizers in agricultural run-off, from lagoonal corals impacted by sewage, and from a reef located 30 km offshore. Skeletal {delta}{sup 15}N in the agriculturally exposed coral declined from 10.7 {+-} 0.4 per mille in 1970-1971, when synthetic fertilizers (-0.8 per mille {+-} 0.2 per mille ) were introduced to Bali, to a depleted 'anthropogenic' baseline of 3.5 per mille {+-} 0.4% in the mid-1990s. {delta}{sup 15}N values were negatively correlated with rainfall, suggesting that marine {delta}{sup 15}N lowers during flood-born influxes of waste fertilizers. Reef cores exposed to untreated sewage in terrestrial discharge were enriched (7.8 and 7.3 {+-} 0.4 per mille ), while the offshore core reflected background oceanic signals (6.2 {+-} 0.4 per mille). {delta}{sup 15}N, N concentration, and C:N systematics indicate that the N isotopic composition of skeletal organic matter was generally well preserved over 30 years. We suggest that skeletal organic {delta}{sup 15}N can serve as a recorder of past nitrogen sources. In Bali, this tracer suggests that the intensification of Western style agricultural practices since 1970 are contributing to the degradation of coastal coral reefs.

  16. Effects of land use and retention practices on sediment yields in the Stony Brook basin, New Jersey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mansue, Lawrence J.; Anderson, Peter W.

    1974-01-01

    The average annual rate of suspended-sediment discharge of the Stony Brook at Princeton, N.J. (44.5 square miles) is about 8,800 tons, or 200 tons per square mile. Annual yields within the basin, which is in the Piedmont Lowlands section of the Piedmont physiographic province in west-central New Jersey, range from 25 to 400 tons per square mile. Storm runoff that transports suspended materials in excess of a ton carries 90 percent of the total suspended-sediment discharge from the basin. Observations of particlesize distributions indicate that the suspended material carried during storms is 55 percent silt, 40 percent clay, and 5 percent sand. A trend analysis of sediment records collected at Princeton between 1956 and 1970 indicated an increase in suspended-sediment discharge per unit of water discharge during 1956-61. From early 1962 to late 1967, sediment trends were difficult to interpret owing to complicating factors, such as reservoir construction, urbanization, and extreme drought. After 1967, yields decreased. Variations in sediment yields during the study are attributed to the integrated influence of several factors. A 2.9 percent decrease in croplands and an increase of 5.1 percent in idle and urban land use probably produced a net increase in sediment yields. Construction of seven sediment-retention reservoirs under Public Law 566 resulted in temporary increases in sediment yields. However, based on a trap-efficiency investigation at 1 site, the combined effect of operation of these 7 reservoirs is estimated to result in a 20 percent reduction in sediment discharge from the basin. Other factors that influence the noted decrease include reduction in yields during 5 years of drought, 1962-66, and reduced construction and development during the latter part of the study period resulting from a general economic slowdown.

  17. Coral reproduction in Western Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Gilmour

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Larval production and recruitment underpin the maintenance of coral populations, but these early life history stages are vulnerable to extreme variation in physical conditions. Environmental managers aim to minimise human impacts during significant periods of larval production and recruitment on reefs, but doing so requires knowledge of the modes and timing of coral reproduction. Most corals are hermaphroditic or gonochoric, with a brooding or broadcast spawning mode of reproduction. Brooding corals are a significant component of some reefs and produce larvae over consecutive months. Broadcast spawning corals are more common and display considerable variation in their patterns of spawning among reefs. Highly synchronous spawning can occur on reefs around Australia, particularly on the Great Barrier Reef. On Australia’s remote north-west coast there have been fewer studies of coral reproduction. The recent industrial expansion into these regions has facilitated research, but the associated data are often contained within confidential reports. Here we combine information in this grey-literature with that available publicly to update our knowledge of coral reproduction in WA, for tens of thousands of corals and hundreds of species from over a dozen reefs spanning 20° of latitude. We identified broad patterns in coral reproduction, but more detailed insights were hindered by biased sampling; most studies focused on species of Acropora sampled over a few months at several reefs. Within the existing data, there was a latitudinal gradient in spawning activity among seasons, with mass spawning during autumn occurring on all reefs (but the temperate south-west. Participation in a smaller, multi-specific spawning during spring decreased from approximately one quarter of corals on the Kimberley Oceanic reefs to little participation at Ningaloo. Within these seasons, spawning was concentrated in March and/or April, and October and/or November, depending

  18. CORAL REEFS. Genomic determinants of coral heat tolerance across latitudes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, Groves B; Davies, Sarah W; Aglyamova, Galina A; Meyer, Eli; Bay, Line K; Matz, Mikhail V

    2015-06-26

    As global warming continues, reef-building corals could avoid local population declines through "genetic rescue" involving exchange of heat-tolerant genotypes across latitudes, but only if latitudinal variation in thermal tolerance is heritable. Here, we show an up-to-10-fold increase in odds of survival of coral larvae under heat stress when their parents come from a warmer lower-latitude location. Elevated thermal tolerance was associated with heritable differences in expression of oxidative, extracellular, transport, and mitochondrial functions that indicated a lack of prior stress. Moreover, two genomic regions strongly responded to selection for thermal tolerance in interlatitudinal crosses. These results demonstrate that variation in coral thermal tolerance across latitudes has a strong genetic basis and could serve as raw material for natural selection. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  19. Coevolution of caudal skeleton and tail feathers in birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felice, Ryan N

    2014-12-01

    Birds are capable of a wide range of aerial locomotor behaviors in part because of the derived structure and function of the avian tail. The tail apparatus consists of a several mobile (free) caudal vertebrae, a terminal skeletal element (the pygostyle), and an articulated fan of tail feathers that may be spread or folded, as well as muscular and fibroadipose structures that facilitate tail movements. Morphological variation in both the tail fan and the caudal skeleton that supports it are well documented. The structure of the tail feathers and the pygostyle each evolve in response to functional demands of differing locomotor behaviors. Here, I test whether the integument and skeleton coevolve in this important locomotor module. I quantified feather and skeletal morphology in a diverse sample of waterbirds and shorebirds using a combination of linear and geometric morphometrics. Covariation between tail fan shape and skeletal morphology was then tested using phylogenetic comparative methods. Pygostyle shape is found to be a good predictor of tail fan shape (e.g., forked, graduated), supporting the hypothesis that the tail fan and the tail skeleton have coevolved. This statistical relationship is used to reconstruct feather morphology in an exemplar fossil waterbird, Limnofregata azygosternon. Based on pygostyle morphology, this taxon is likely to have exhibited a forked tail fan similar to that of its extant sister clade Fregata, despite differing in inferred ecology and other aspects of skeletal anatomy. These methods may be useful in reconstructing rectricial morphology in other extinct birds and thus assist in characterizing the evolution of flight control surfaces in birds. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Shedding light into the function of the earliest vertebrate skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Perez, Carlos; Purnell, Mark; Rayfield, Emily; Donoghue, Philip

    2016-04-01

    Conodonts are an extinct group of jawless vertebrates, the first in our evolutionary lineage to develop a biomineralized skeleton. As such, the conodont skeleton is of great significance because of the insights it provides concerning the biology and function of the primitive vertebrate skeleton. Conodont function has been debated for a century and a half on the basis of its paleocological importance in the Palaezoic ecosystems. However, due to the lack of extanct close representatives and the small size of the conodont element (under a milimiter in length) strongly limited their functional analysis, traditional restricted to analogy. More recently, qualitative approaches have been developed, facilitating tests of element function based on occlusal performance and analysis of microwear and microstructure. In this work we extend these approaches using novel quantitative experimental methods including Synchrotron Radiation X-ray Tomographic Microscopy or Finite Element Analysis to test hypotheses of conodont function. The development of high resolution virtual models of conodont elements, together with biomechanical approaches using Finite Element analysis, informed by occlusal and microwear analyses, provided conclusive support to test hypothesis of structural adaptation within the crown tissue microstructure, showing a close topological co-variation patterns of compressive and tensile stress distribution with different crystallite orientation. In addition, our computational analyses strongly support a tooth-like function for many conodont species. Above all, our study establishes a framework (experimental approach) in which the functional ecology of conodonts can be read from their rich taxonomy and phylogeny, representing an important attempt to understand the role of this abundant and diverse clade in the Phanerozoic marine ecosystems.

  1. Systematic investigation of the suitability of two different skeletal materials of Diploria strigosa corals for 230Th/U-dating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obert, J. C.; Scholz, D.; Felis, T.; Brocas, W.; Jochum, K. P.

    2014-12-01

    Fossil reef corals are widely used in palaeoclimate research which requires precise absolute dating. However, post-depositional open-system behaviour often causes apparently inaccurate 230Th/U-ages. We systematically tested the suitability of two different skeletal materials of eight Diploria strigosa corals from Bonaire, Netherlands Antilles, for 230Th/U-dating: (i) The commonly used bulk sample material comprised of all skeletal elements and (ii) the denser theca walls. The theca walls show less diagenetic alteration. The 230Th/U-ages range from 118.9 ± 2.0 to 130.6 ± 1.2 ka. In contrast, the ages determined on the bulk material range from 112.98 ± 0.80 to 174.0 ± 2.2 ka and, thus, show substantially older and younger ages than expected for the Last Interglacial. Furthermore, for all corals, at least one of the theca sub-samples has an initial (234U/238U) activity ratio similar to the modern seawater value. For the bulk material, only 50 % of the corals show this agreement. Thus, the bulk material is obviously more prone to open-system processes. Therefore, the extraction of the theca walls from the coral skeleton considerably improves the reliability of the 230Th/U-ages. Comparison of the bulk material with the more pristine theca walls shows that several different open-system processes affected the fossil corals. For 50 % of the corals, no significant differences in ages, activity ratios and concentrations between the two materials are observed. For three of the eight corals, the bulk samples contain considerable amounts of 232Th indicating detrital contamination, probably in combination with uranium loss. These samples also yield the oldest ages predating the beginning of the Last Interglacial by up to 35 ka. For one coral, the bulk material yields younger ages than the theca wall material. This sample also contains elevated 232Th, which again suggests detrital contamination. In addition, the coral was subject to secondary aragonite precipitation

  2. 230Th/U dating of Last Interglacial brain corals from Bonaire (southern Caribbean) using bulk and theca wall material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obert, J. Christina; Scholz, Denis; Felis, Thomas; Brocas, William M.; Jochum, Klaus P.; Andreae, Meinrat O.

    2016-04-01

    potential scenario is a combination of detrital contamination and U addition by secondary pore infillings. Our results show that the dense theca wall material of D. strigosa is generally less affected by post-depositional open-system behaviour and better suited for 230Th/U-dating than the bulk material. This is also obvious from the fact that all ages of theca wall material reflect a Last Interglacial origin (∼125 ka), whereas the bulk material samples are either substantially older or younger. However, for some corals, the 230Th/U-ages and activity ratios of the bulk material and the theca wall samples are similar. This shows that strictly reliable 230Th/U-ages can also be obtained from bulk material samples of exceptionally well-preserved corals. However, the bulk material samples more frequently show elevated activity ratios and ages than the corresponding theca wall samples. Our findings should be generally applicable to brain corals (Mussidae) that are found in tropical oceans worldwide and may enable reliable 230Th/U-dating of fossil corals with similar skeletal architecture, even if their bulk skeleton is altered by diagenesis. The 230Th/U-ages we consider reliable (120-130 ka), along with a recently published age of 118 ka, provide the first comprehensive dating of the elevated lower reef terrace at Bonaire (118-130 ka), which is in agreement in timing and duration with other Last Interglacial records.

  3. Wave Equation Inversion of Skeletonized SurfaceWaves

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Zhendong

    2015-08-19

    We present a surface-wave inversion method that inverts for the S-wave velocity from the Rayleigh dispersion curve for the fundamental-mode. We call this wave equation inversion of skeletonized surface waves because the dispersion curve for the fundamental-mode Rayleigh wave is inverted using finite-difference solutions to the wave equation. The best match between the predicted and observed dispersion curves provides the optimal S-wave velocity model. Results with synthetic and field data illustrate the benefits and limitations of this method.

  4. Early Homo erectus skeleton from west Lake Turkana, Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, F; Harris, J; Leakey, R; Walker, A

    The most complete early hominid skeleton ever found was discovered at Nariokotome III, west Lake Turkana, Kenya, and excavated in situ in sediments dated close to 1.6 Myr. The specimen, KNM-WT 15000, is a male Homo erectus that died at 12 +/- 1 years of age, as judged by human standards, but was already 1.68 m tall. Although human-like in many respects, this specimen documents important anatomical differences between H. erectus and modern humans for the first time.

  5. 210Pb-226Ra chronology reveals rapid growth rate of Madrepora oculata and Lophelia pertusa on world's largest cold-water coral reef

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Tisnérat-Laborde

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Here we show the use of the 210Pb-226Ra excess method to determine the growth rate of two corals from the world's largest known cold-water coral reef, Røst Reef, north of the Arctic circle off Norway. Colonies of each of the two species that build the reef, Lophelia pertusa and Madrepora oculata, were collected alive at 350 m depth using a submersible. Pb and Ra isotopes were measured along the major growth axis of both specimens using low level alpha and gamma spectrometry and trace element compositions were studied. 210Pb and 226Ra differ in the way they are incorporated into coral skeletons. Hence, to assess growth rates, we considered the exponential decrease of initially incorporated 210Pb, as well as the increase in 210Pb from the decay of 226Ra and contamination with 210Pb associated with Mn-Fe coatings that we were unable to remove completely from the oldest parts of the skeletons. 226Ra activity was similar in both coral species, so, assuming constant uptake of 210Pb through time, we used the 210Pb-226Ra chronology to calculate growth rates. The 45.5 cm long branch of M. oculata was 31 yr with an average linear growth rate of 14.4 ± 1.1 mm yr−1 (2.6 polyps per year. Despite cleaning, a correction for Mn-Fe oxide contamination was required for the oldest part of the colony; this correction corroborated our radiocarbon date of 40 yr and a mean growth rate of 2 polyps yr−1. This rate is similar to the one obtained in aquarium experiments under optimal growth conditions. For the 80 cm-long L. pertusa colony, metal-oxide contamination remained in both the middle and basal part of the coral skeleton despite cleaning, inhibiting similar age and growth rate estimates. The youngest part of the colony was free of metal oxides and this 15 cm section had an estimated a growth rate of 8 mm yr−1, with high uncertainty (~1 polyp every two to three years. We are less certain of this 210Pb growth rate estimate which is within the lowermost

  6. Nitrogen isotopic records of terrestrial pollution encoded in Floridian and Bahamian gorgonian corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherwood, Owen A; Lapointe, Brian E; Risk, Michael J; Jamieson, Robyn E

    2010-02-01

    Stable nitrogen isotope (delta(15)N) analysis has proven an effective "fingerprint" of sewage contamination in coral reef environments; however, short-term variability in nitrogen cycling and isotopic fractionation may obscure long-term trends. Here, we examine delta(15)N signatures in the organic endoskeletons of long-lived (20-40 years) gorgonian corals. Specimens were collected from relatively pristine reefs off Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas, and from reefs off southeast Florida heavily impacted by multiple sources of anthropogenic nitrogen. The delta(15)N of the most recently grown skeleton (branch tips) ranged from +2 to +3 per thousand at Green Turtle Cay, and +4.5 to +10 per thousand off Florida. These values closely match the delta(15)N of macroalgae collected from the same locations, indicating that gorgonian corals are isotopically similar to primary producers, and therefore suitable for assessing sources of dissolved inorganic nitrogen. Differences in the delta(15)N between younger and older skeleton indicated an overall decline of -0.34 +/- 0.06 per thousand (1 s.e) over the last 20 - 40 years at Green Turtle Cay, reflecting a possible increase in nitrogen fixation and/or atmospheric deposition of anthropogenic nitrogen. Off southeast Florida, there was an overall increase in delta(15)N over the same time period, reflecting increasing wastewater discharges from the rapidly growing population. These results highlight the usefulness of delta(15)N recorded in gorgonians and other long-lived organisms in assessing spatiotemporal patterns of nitrogen sources to coastal marine environments.

  7. Coral trace metal of natural and anthropogenic influences in the northern South China Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Wei; Yu, Ke-Fu; Song, Yin-Xian; Zhao, Jian-Xin; Feng, Yue-Xing; Wang, Ying-Hui; Xu, Shen-Dong

    2017-12-31

    The composition and concentrations of trace metals in coastal seawater have changed in parallel with variations in geochemical processes, climate and anthropogenic activities. To evaluate the response of trace metals in coastal seawater to climatic changes and human disturbances, we report annual-resolution trace element data for a Porites coral core covering ~100years of continuous growth from a fringing reef in Xiaodonghai Bay in the northern South China Sea. The results suggested that the trace metal contents in the coral skeleton demonstrated decadal to interdecadal fluctuations with several large or small peaks in certain years with remarkable environmental significances. All of the trace metals in coastal surface seawater, especially Cr and Pb (related to industrial or traffic emissions), were impacted by terrestrial inputs, except for Sr and U, which were impacted by the surface seawater temperature (SST). Moreover, Mn, Ni, Fe and Co were also contributed by weapons and military supplies during wars, and Cu, Cd and Zn were further impacted by upwelling associated with their biogeochemical cycles. Ba and rare earth element (REE) in coastal surface seawater were dominated by runoff and groundwater discharge associated with precipitation. This study provided the potential for some trace metals (e.g., REE, Ba, Cu, Cd, and Zn) in coral skeletons to be used as proxies of natural (e.g., upwelling and precipitation) and anthropogenic (e.g., war and coastal construction) variability of seawater chemistry to enable the reconstruction of environmental and climatic changes through time. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Confronting the coral reef crisis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellwood, D. R.; Hughes, T. P.; Folke, C.; Nyström, M.

    2004-06-01

    The worldwide decline of coral reefs calls for an urgent reassessment of current management practices. Confronting large-scale crises requires a major scaling-up of management efforts based on an improved understanding of the ecological processes that underlie reef resilience. Managing for improved resilience, incorporating the role of human activity in shaping ecosystems, provides a basis for coping with uncertainty, future changes and ecological surprises. Here we review the ecological roles of critical functional groups (for both corals and reef fishes) that are fundamental to understanding resilience and avoiding phase shifts from coral dominance to less desirable, degraded ecosystems. We identify striking biogeographic differences in the species richness and composition of functional groups, which highlight the vulnerability of Caribbean reef ecosystems. These findings have profound implications for restoration of degraded reefs, management of fisheries, and the focus on marine protected areas and biodiversity hotspots as priorities for conservation.

  9. Oceanic forcing of coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, Ryan J; Falter, James L

    2015-01-01

    Although the oceans play a fundamental role in shaping the distribution and function of coral reefs worldwide, a modern understanding of the complex interactions between ocean and reef processes is still only emerging. These dynamics are especially challenging owing to both the broad range of spatial scales (less than a meter to hundreds of kilometers) and the complex physical and biological feedbacks involved. Here, we review recent advances in our understanding of these processes, ranging from the small-scale mechanics of flow around coral communities and their influence on nutrient exchange to larger, reef-scale patterns of wave- and tide-driven circulation and their effects on reef water quality and perceived rates of metabolism. We also examine regional-scale drivers of reefs such as coastal upwelling, internal waves, and extreme disturbances such as cyclones. Our goal is to show how a wide range of ocean-driven processes ultimately shape the growth and metabolism of coral reefs.

  10. Nutrient supply from fishes facilitates macroalgae and suppresses corals in a Caribbean coral reef ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burkepile, Deron E; Allgeier, Jacob E; Shantz, Andrew A; Pritchard, Catharine E; Lemoine, Nathan P; Bhatti, Laura H; Layman, Craig A

    2013-01-01

    On coral reefs, fishes can facilitate coral growth via nutrient excretion; however, as coral abundance declines, these nutrients may help facilitate increases in macroalgae. By combining surveys of reef communities with bioenergetics modeling, we showed that fish excretion supplied 25 times more nitrogen to forereefs in the Florida Keys, USA, than all other biotic and abiotic sources combined. One apparent result was a positive relationship between fish excretion and macroalgal cover on these reefs. Herbivore biomass also showed a negative relationship with macroalgal cover, suggesting strong interactions of top-down and bottom-up forcing. Nutrient supply by fishes also showed a negative correlation with juvenile coral density, likely mediated by competition between macroalgae and corals, suggesting that fish excretion may hinder coral recovery following large-scale coral loss. Thus, the impact of nutrient supply by fishes may be context-dependent and reinforce either coral-dominant or coral-depauperate reef communities depending on initial community states.

  11. Small-scale environmental variation influences whether coral-dwelling fish promote or impede coral growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chase, T J; Pratchett, M S; Walker, S P W; Hoogenboom, M O

    2014-12-01

    Mutualistic symbioses are ubiquitous in nature and facilitate high biodiversity and productivity of ecosystems by enhancing the efficiency of energy and nutrient use within ecological communities. For example, small groups of fish that inhabit coral colonies in reef ecosystems potentially enhance coral growth through defense from coral predators, aeration of coral tissue and nutrient provisioning. This study examines whether the prevalence and consequences of fish-coral interactions vary among sites with different environmental conditions in a coral reef lagoon, using the humbug damselfish Dascyllus aruanus and its preferred coral host Pocillopora damicornis as a study system. Using a field experiment, we tested the site-specific effects of D. aruanus on coral growth, and show that the cost-benefit ratio for corals hosting fish varies with local environmental variation. Results of this study also demonstrate that fish prefer to inhabit coral colonies with particular branch-spacing characteristics, and that the local abundance of D. aruanus influences the proportion of coral colonies within a site that are occupied by fish rather than increasing the number of fish per colony. We also show that corals consistently benefit from hosting D. aruanus via defense from predation by corallivorous butterflyfish, regardless of local environmental conditions. These findings highlight the need to consider the potential for multiple scale- and state-dependent interaction effects when examining the ecology of fish-coral associations. We suggest that fluctuating cost-benefit ratios for species interactions may contribute to the maintenance of different colony phenotypes within coral populations.

  12. Investigating dust input to the Red Sea using barium in corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryan, S. P.; Hughen, K. A.; Farrar, J. T.

    2012-12-01

    a seasonal cycle that is negatively correlated with sea surface temperature and positively correlated with coral Sr/Ca. The seasonal cycle is consistent with the previously suggested temperature dependence on the incorporation of barium into coralline aragonite. Superimposed on the seasonal cycle are distinct peaks, which are likely caused by wind jet dust events. To investigate long-term variability in dust input, we have measured coral Ba/Ca at annual to biannual resolution at both sites for the past 250 years. We removed the influence of temperature on Ba/Ca using coral Sr/Ca; providing a record of residual Ba/Ca in the coral skeleton. Our results reveal a long-term increase in residual Ba/Ca, suggesting an increase in dust input to the Red Sea over the past 250 years. We discuss these results and their implications for changes in the SW Asian summer monsoon system since the Little Ice Age.

  13. Insights into Migration and Development of Coral Black Band Disease Based on Fine Structure Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron W. Miller

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available In many diverse ecosystems, ranging from natural surfaces in aquatic ecosystems to the mammalian gut and medical implants, bacterial populations and communities exist as biofilms. While the process of biofilm development has been well-studied for those produced by unicellular bacteria such Pseudomonas aeruginosa, little is known about biofilm development associated with filamentous microorganisms. Black band disease (BBD of corals is characterized as a polymicrobial biofilm (mat community, visually-dominated by filamentous cyanobacteria. The mat migrates across a living coral host, completely lysing coral tissue and leaving behind exposed coral skeleton. It is the only known cyanobacterial biofilm that migrates across a substratum, thus eliciting questions about the mechanisms and unique characteristics of this system. Fragments of the coral Montastraea annularis, five artificially infected with BBD and two collected from a naturally BBD-infected colony, were used to address these questions by detailed examination using scanning and transmission electron microscopy (SEM and TEM. In areas close to the interface of coral tissue and the mature disease band two types of clusters of cyanobacteria were observed, one with random orientation and one with parallel orientation of filaments. The latter exhibited active secretion of extracellular polysaccharide (EPS while the randomly oriented clusters did not. Within the well developed band cyanobacterial filaments were observed to be embedded in EPS and were present as layers of filaments in parallel orientation. These observations suggest that BBD cyanobacteria orient themselves and produce EPS in a sequential process during migration to form the complex BBD matrix.En muchos ecosistemas diversos, que van desde ecosistemas acuáticos hasta los intestinos de mamíferos e implantes médicos, las poblaciones y comunidades de bacterias existen como biopelículas (biofilms. El proceso de desarrollo de las

  14. A novel reef coral symbiosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pantos, O.; Bythell, J. C.

    2010-09-01

    Reef building corals form close associations with unicellular microalgae, fungi, bacteria and archaea, some of which are symbiotic and which together form the coral holobiont. Associations with multicellular eukaryotes such as polychaete worms, bivalves and sponges are not generally considered to be symbiotic as the host responds to their presence by forming physical barriers with an active growth edge in the exoskeleton isolating the invader and, at a subcellular level, activating innate immune responses such as melanin deposition. This study describes a novel symbiosis between a newly described hydrozoan ( Zanclea margaritae sp. nov.) and the reef building coral Acropora muricata (= A. formosa), with the hydrozoan hydrorhiza ramifying throughout the coral tissues with no evidence of isolation or activation of the immune systems of the host. The hydrorhiza lacks a perisarc, which is typical of symbiotic species of this and related genera, including species that associate with other cnidarians such as octocorals. The symbiosis was observed at all sites investigated from two distant locations on the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, and appears to be host species specific, being found only in A. muricata and in none of 30 other species investigated at these sites. Not all colonies of A. muricata host the hydrozoans and both the prevalence within the coral population (mean = 66%) and density of emergent hydrozoan hydranths on the surface of the coral (mean = 4.3 cm-2, but up to 52 cm-2) vary between sites. The form of the symbiosis in terms of the mutualism-parasitism continuum is not known, although the hydrozoan possesses large stenotele nematocysts, which may be important for defence from predators and protozoan pathogens. This finding expands the known A. muricata holobiont and the association must be taken into account in future when determining the corals’ abilities to defend against predators and withstand stress.

  15. Microbial Regulation in Gorgonian Corals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura D. Mydlarz

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Gorgonian corals possess many novel natural products that could potentially mediate coral-bacterial interactions. Since many bacteria use quorum sensing (QS signals to facilitate colonization of host organisms, regulation of prokaryotic cell-to-cell communication may represent an important bacterial control mechanism. In the present study, we examined extracts of twelve species of Caribbean gorgonian corals, for mechanisms that regulate microbial colonization, such as antibacterial activity and QS regulatory activity. Ethanol extracts of gorgonians collected from Puerto Rico and the Florida Keys showed a range of both antibacterial and QS activities using a specific Pseudomonas aeruginosa QS reporter, sensitive to long chain AHLs and a short chain N-acylhomoserine lactones (AHL biosensor, Chromobacterium violaceium. Overall, the gorgonian corals had higher antimicrobial activity against non-marine strains when compared to marine strains. Pseudopterogorgia americana, Pseusopterogorgia acerosa, and Pseudoplexuara flexuosa had the highest QS inhibitory effect. Interestingly, Pseudoplexuara porosa extracts stimulated QS activity with a striking 17-fold increase in signal. The stimulation of QS by P. porosa or other elements of the holobiont may encourage colonization or recruitment of specific microbial species. Overall, these results suggest the presence of novel stimulatory QS, inhibitory QS and bactericidal compounds in gorgonian corals. A better understanding of these compounds may reveal insight into coral-microbial ecology and whether a therapeutic potential exists.

  16. The origin of conodonts and of vertebrate mineralized skeletons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murdock, Duncan J.E.; Dong, Xi-Ping; Repetski, John E.; Marone, Federica; Stampanoni, Marco; Donoghue, Philip C.J.

    2013-01-01

    Conodonts are an extinct group of jawless vertebrates whose tooth-like elements are the earliest instance of a mineralized skeleton in the vertebrate lineage, inspiring the ‘inside-out’ hypothesis that teeth evolved independently of the vertebrate dermal skeleton and before the origin of jaws. However, these propositions have been based on evidence from derived euconodonts. Here we test hypotheses of a paraconodont ancestry of euconodonts using synchrotron radiation X-ray tomographic microscopy to characterize and compare the microstructure of morphologically similar euconodont and paraconodont elements. Paraconodonts exhibit a range of grades of structural differentiation, including tissues and a pattern of growth common to euconodont basal bodies. The different grades of structural differentiation exhibited by paraconodonts demonstrate the stepwise acquisition of euconodont characters, resolving debate over the relationship between these two groups. By implication, the putative homology of euconodont crown tissue and vertebrate enamel must be rejected as these tissues have evolved independently and convergently. Thus, the precise ontogenetic, structural and topological similarities between conodont elements and vertebrate odontodes appear to be a remarkable instance of convergence. The last common ancestor of conodonts and jawed vertebrates probably lacked mineralized skeletal tissues. The hypothesis that teeth evolved before jaws and the inside-out hypothesis of dental evolution must be rejected; teeth seem to have evolved through the extension of odontogenic competence from the external dermis to internal epithelium soon after the origin of jaws.

  17. Simulation of mould filling process for composite skeleton castings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Dziuba

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available In this work authors showed selected results of simulation and experimental studies on temperature distribution during solidification of skeleton casting and mould filling process. The aim of conducted simulations was the choice of thermal and geometrical parameters for the needs of designed calculations of the skeleton castings and the estimation of the guidelines for the technology of manufacturing. The subject of numerical simulation was the analysis of ability of filling the channels of core by liquid metal at estability technological parameters.. Below the assumptions and results of the initial simulated calculations are presented. The total number of the nodes in the casting was 1920 and of the connectors was 5280 what gave filling of 100% for the nodes and 99,56% for the connectors in the results of the simulation. Together it resulted as 99,78 % of filling the volume of the casting. The nodes and connectors were filled up to the 30 level of the casting in the simulation. The all connectors were filled up to the 25 level of the casting in the simulation. Starting from the 25 level individual connectors at the side surface of the casting weren’t filled up. The connectors weren’t supplied by multi-level getting system. The differences of filling the levels are little (maximally 5 per cent.

  18. Navigable points estimation for mobile robots using binary image skeletonization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez S., Fernando; Jacinto G., Edwar; Montiel A., Holman

    2017-02-01

    This paper describes the use of image skeletonization for the estimation of all the navigable points, inside a scene of mobile robots navigation. Those points are used for computing a valid navigation path, using standard methods. The main idea is to find the middle and the extreme points of the obstacles in the scene, taking into account the robot size, and create a map of navigable points, in order to reduce the amount of information for the planning algorithm. Those points are located by means of the skeletonization of a binary image of the obstacles and the scene background, along with some other digital image processing algorithms. The proposed algorithm automatically gives a variable number of navigable points per obstacle, depending on the complexity of its shape. As well as, the way how the algorithm can change some of their parameters in order to change the final number of the resultant key points is shown. The results shown here were obtained applying different kinds of digital image processing algorithms on static scenes.

  19. Wave-equation Qs Inversion of Skeletonized Surface Waves

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Jing

    2017-02-08

    We present a skeletonized inversion method that inverts surface-wave data for the Qs quality factor. Similar to the inversion of dispersion curves for the S-wave velocity model, the complicated surface-wave arrivals are skeletonized as simpler data, namely the amplitude spectra of the windowed Rayleigh-wave arrivals. The optimal Qs model is the one that minimizes the difference in the peak frequencies of the predicted and observed Rayleigh wave arrivals using a gradient-based wave-equation optimization method. Solutions to the viscoelastic wave-equation are used to compute the predicted Rayleigh-wave arrivals and the misfit gradient at every iteration. This procedure, denoted as wave-equation Qs inversion (WQs), does not require the assumption of a layered model and tends to have fast and robust convergence compared to full waveform inversion (FWI). Numerical examples with synthetic and field data demonstrate that the WQs method can accurately invert for a smoothed approximation to the subsurface Qs distribution as long as the Vs model is known with sufficient accuracy.

  20. Skeletonized wave-equation Qs tomography using surface waves

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Jing

    2017-08-17

    We present a skeletonized inversion method that inverts surface-wave data for the Qs quality factor. Similar to the inversion of dispersion curves for the S-wave velocity model, the complicated surface-wave arrivals are skeletonized as simpler data, namely the amplitude spectra of the windowed Rayleigh-wave arrivals. The optimal Qs model is then found that minimizes the difference in the peak frequencies of the predicted and observed Rayleigh wave arrivals using a gradient-based wave-equation optimization method. Solutions to the viscoelastic wave-equation are used to compute the predicted Rayleigh-wave arrivals and the misfit gradient at every iteration. This procedure, denoted as wave-equation Qs tomography (WQs), does not require the assumption of a layered model and tends to have fast and robust convergence compared to Q full waveform inversion (Q-FWI). Numerical examples with synthetic and field data demonstrate that the WQs method can accurately invert for a smoothed approximation to the subsur-face Qs distribution as long as the Vs model is known with sufficient accuracy.

  1. DNA and bone structure preservation in medieval human skeletons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coulson-Thomas, Yvette M; Norton, Andrew L; Coulson-Thomas, Vivien J; Florencio-Silva, Rinaldo; Ali, Nadir; Elmrghni, Samir; Gil, Cristiane D; Sasso, Gisela R S; Dixon, Ronald A; Nader, Helena B

    2015-06-01

    Morphological and ultrastructural data from archaeological human bones are scarce, particularly data that have been correlated with information on the preservation of molecules such as DNA. Here we examine the bone structure of macroscopically well-preserved medieval human skeletons by transmission electron microscopy and immunohistochemistry, and the quantity and quality of DNA extracted from these skeletons. DNA technology has been increasingly used for analyzing physical evidence in archaeological forensics; however, the isolation of ancient DNA is difficult since it is highly degraded, extraction yields are low and the co-extraction of PCR inhibitors is a problem. We adapted and optimised a method that is frequently used for isolating DNA from modern samples, Chelex(®) 100 (Bio-Rad) extraction, for isolating DNA from archaeological human bones and teeth. The isolated DNA was analysed by real-time PCR using primers targeting the sex determining region on the Y chromosome (SRY) and STR typing using the AmpFlSTR(®) Identifiler PCR Amplification kit. Our results clearly show the preservation of bone matrix in medieval bones and the presence of intact osteocytes with well preserved encapsulated nuclei. In addition, we show how effective Chelex(®) 100 is for isolating ancient DNA from archaeological bones and teeth. This optimised method is suitable for STR typing using kits aimed specifically at degraded and difficult DNA templates since amplicons of up to 250bp were successfully amplified. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. 1-Skeletons of the Spanning Tree Problems with Additional Constraints

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. A. Bondarenko

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we study polyhedral properties of two spanning tree problems with additional constraints. In the first problem, it is required to find a tree with a minimum sum of edge weights among all spanning trees with the number of leaves less than or equal to a given value. In the second problem, an additional constraint is the assumption that the degree of all nodes of the spanning tree does not exceed a given value. The recognition versions of both problems are NP-complete. We consider polytopes of these problems and their 1-skeletons. We prove that in both cases it is a NP-complete problem to determine whether the vertices of 1-skeleton are adjacent. Although it is possible to obtain a superpolynomial lower bounds on the clique numbers of these graphs. These values characterize the time complexity in a broad class of algorithms based on linear comparisons. The results indicate a fundamental difference between combinatorial and geometric properties of the considered problems from the classical minimum spanning tree problem.

  3. The origin of conodonts and of vertebrate mineralized skeletons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murdock, Duncan J E; Dong, Xi-Ping; Repetski, John E; Marone, Federica; Stampanoni, Marco; Donoghue, Philip C J

    2013-10-24

    Conodonts are an extinct group of jawless vertebrates whose tooth-like elements are the earliest instance of a mineralized skeleton in the vertebrate lineage, inspiring the 'inside-out' hypothesis that teeth evolved independently of the vertebrate dermal skeleton and before the origin of jaws. However, these propositions have been based on evidence from derived euconodonts. Here we test hypotheses of a paraconodont ancestry of euconodonts using synchrotron radiation X-ray tomographic microscopy to characterize and compare the microstructure of morphologically similar euconodont and paraconodont elements. Paraconodonts exhibit a range of grades of structural differentiation, including tissues and a pattern of growth common to euconodont basal bodies. The different grades of structural differentiation exhibited by paraconodonts demonstrate the stepwise acquisition of euconodont characters, resolving debate over the relationship between these two groups. By implication, the putative homology of euconodont crown tissue and vertebrate enamel must be rejected as these tissues have evolved independently and convergently. Thus, the precise ontogenetic, structural and topological similarities between conodont elements and vertebrate odontodes appear to be a remarkable instance of convergence. The last common ancestor of conodonts and jawed vertebrates probably lacked mineralized skeletal tissues. The hypothesis that teeth evolved before jaws and the inside-out hypothesis of dental evolution must be rejected; teeth seem to have evolved through the extension of odontogenic competence from the external dermis to internal epithelium soon after the origin of jaws.

  4. Prevalence of skeletal tissue growth anomalies in a scleractinian coral: Turbinaria mesenterina of Malvan Marine Sanctuary, eastern Arabian Sea

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Hussain, A.; De, K.; Thomas, L.; Nagesh, R.; Mote, S.; Ingole, B.S.

    Resale or republication not permitted without written consent of the publisher Dis Aquat Org 121: 79–83, 2016 al. 1981) and endolithic skeleton-boring filamentous fungi (Le Campion-Alsumard et al. 1995). According to Peters et al. (1986) and Coles & Seapy...Ivan Marine Sanctuary (n = 3 transects per site) Hussain et al.: Prevalence of STAs in Turbinaria mesenterina 83 Bak RPM (1983) Neoplasia, regeneration and growth in the reef building coral Acropora palmate. Mar Biol 77: 221−227 Bruno JF, Petes LE, Harvell CD...

  5. Calcification rates of the massive coral Siderastrea siderea and crustose coralline algae along the Florida Keys (USA) outer-reef tract

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuffner, I.B.; Hickey, T.D.; Morrison, J.M.

    2013-01-01

    Coral reefs are degrading on a global scale, and rates of reef-organism calcification are predicted to decline due to ocean warming and acidification. Systematic measurements of calcification over space and time are necessary to detect change resulting from environmental stressors. We established a network of calcification monitoring stations at four managed reefs along the outer Florida Keys Reef Tract (FKRT) from Miami to the Dry Tortugas. Eighty colonies (in two sequential sets of 40) of the reef-building coral, Siderastrea siderea, were transplanted to fixed apparatus that allowed repetitive detachment for buoyant weighing every 6 months. Algal-recruitment tiles were also deployed during each weighing interval to measure net calcification of the crustose coralline algal (CCA) community. Coral-calcification rates were an order of magnitude greater than those of CCA. Rates of coral calcification were seasonal (summer calcification was 53% greater than winter), and corals in the Dry Tortugas calcified 48% faster than those at the other three sites. Linear extension rates were also highest in the Dry Tortugas, whereas percent area of the coral skeletons excavated by bioeroding fauna was lowest. The spatial patterns in net coral calcification revealed here correlate well with Holocene reef thickness along the FKRT and, in part, support the “inimical waters hypothesis” proposed by Ginsburg, Hudson, and Shinn almost 50 yrs ago to explain reef development in this region. Due to the homogeneity in coral-calcification rates among the three main Keys sites, we recommend refinement of this hypothesis and suggest that water-quality variables (e.g., carbonate mineral saturation state, dissolved and particulate organic matter, light attenuation) be monitored alongside calcification in future studies. Our results demonstrate that our calcification monitoring network presents a feasible and worthwhile approach to quantifying potential impacts of ocean acidification

  6. Skeleton microstructure of Porites lutea in Kondang Merak, Malang, East Java

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luthfi, Oktiyas Muzaky; Sontodipoero, R. M. Agung M. Rizqon; Isdianto, Andik; Setyohadi, Daduk; Jauhari, Alfan; Januarsa, I. Nyoman

    2017-11-01

    Research on coral microstructure in Indonesia, especially in East Java is rarely done. Therefore, this study aims to examine the shape of Aragonite Crystal coral Porites lutea in Pantai Kondak Merak, East Java, especially in 1998 which is the time of El Nino and has a global impact on coral growth. The shape of the aragonite crystal on the reef can be seen using the Scanning Electron Microscopy-Energy Dispersion X-Ray (SEM - EDX). Based on the coral aragonite crystal form, the increasing temperature in 1998 was not proven to have a devastating effect on the growth of corals of Pantai Kondang Merak. In contrast, the temperature at this site should support corals in order to grow rapidly, but there are other environmental factors that ultimately inhibit the growth of the coral.

  7. An approach to the construction of the carbon skeleton of marine nor-sesquiterpenes. Total synthesis of (±-dehalo-napalilactone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diaz Gaspar

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available We disclose herein a synthetic approach for the preparation of an unusual carbon skeleton, which was found in nor-sesquiterpenes isolated from marine corals. The main structural feature of this skeleton is the presence of two contiguous quaternary centers, one of them bears a spiro gamma-butyrolactone moiety. One of the quaternary centers was prepared with moderate stereoselectivity by the conjugate addition of lithium dimethylcuprate to 2-methylcyclohexenone, followed by the trapping of the intermediate enolate with allyl bromide to furnish trans-2-allyl-2,3-dimethylcyclohexan-2-one, as a major diastereoisomer. The preparation of the quaternary centers bearing the spiro gamma-butyrolactone moiety was secured by the addition of a suitably functionalized organolithium reagent on trans-2-allyl-2,3-dimetylcyclohexan-2-one, followed by separation of the isomers and two oxidation steps. This strategy has permitted us to report the racemic total synthesis of a non-natural nor-sesquiterpene derivative, in 6 steps and 16% overall yield, from 2-methylcyclohexenone.

  8. Coral reefs in the Anthropocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Terry P.; Barnes, Michele L.; Bellwood, David R.; Cinner, Joshua E.; Cumming, Graeme S.; Jackson, Jeremy B. C.; Kleypas, Joanie; van de Leemput, Ingrid A.; Lough, Janice M.; Morrison, Tiffany H.; Palumbi, Stephen R.; van Nes, Egbert H.; Scheffer, Marten

    2017-06-01

    Coral reefs support immense biodiversity and provide important ecosystem services to many millions of people. Yet reefs are degrading rapidly in response to numerous anthropogenic drivers. In the coming centuries, reefs will run the gauntlet of climate change, and rising temperatures will transform them into new configurations, unlike anything observed previously by humans. Returning reefs to past configurations is no longer an option. Instead, the global challenge is to steer reefs through the Anthropocene era in a way that maintains their biological functions. Successful navigation of this transition will require radical changes in the science, management and governance of coral reefs.

  9. Coral reefs in the Anthropocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Terry P; Barnes, Michele L; Bellwood, David R; Cinner, Joshua E; Cumming, Graeme S; Jackson, Jeremy B C; Kleypas, Joanie; van de Leemput, Ingrid A; Lough, Janice M; Morrison, Tiffany H; Palumbi, Stephen R; van Nes, Egbert H; Scheffer, Marten

    2017-05-31

    Coral reefs support immense biodiversity and provide important ecosystem services to many millions of people. Yet reefs are degrading rapidly in response to numerous anthropogenic drivers. In the coming centuries, reefs will run the gauntlet of climate change, and rising temperatures will transform them into new configurations, unlike anything observed previously by humans. Returning reefs to past configurations is no longer an option. Instead, the global challenge is to steer reefs through the Anthropocene era in a way that maintains their biological functions. Successful navigation of this transition will require radical changes in the science, management and governance of coral reefs.

  10. Correlated evolution of sex and reproductive mode in corals (Anthozoa: Scleractinia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerr, Alexander M; Baird, Andrew H; Hughes, Terry P

    2011-01-07

    Sexuality and reproductive mode are two fundamental life-history traits that exhibit largely unexplained macroevolutionary patterns among the major groups of multicellular organisms. For example, the cnidarian class Anthozoa (corals and anemones) is mainly comprised of gonochoric (separate sex) brooders or spawners, while one order, Scleractinia (skeleton-forming corals), appears to be mostly hermaphroditic spawners. Here, using the most complete phylogeny of scleractinians, we reconstruct how evolutionary transitions between sexual systems (gonochorism versus hermaphrodism) and reproductive modes (brooding versus spawning) have generated large-scale taxonomic patterns in these characters. Hermaphrodites have independently evolved in three large, distantly related lineages consisting of mostly reef-building species. Reproductive mode in corals has evolved at twice the rate of sexuality, while the evolution of sexuality has been heavily biased: gonochorism is over 100 times more likely to be lost than gained, and can only be acquired by brooders. This circuitous evolutionary pathway accounts for the prevalence of hermaphroditic spawners among reef-forming scleractinians, despite their ancient gonochoric heritage.

  11. Burrowing hard corals occurring on the sea floor since 80 million years ago.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sentoku, Asuka; Tokuda, Yuki; Ezaki, Yoichi

    2016-04-14

    We describe a previously unknown niche for hard corals in the small, bowl-shaped, solitary scleractinian, Deltocyathoides orientalis (Family Turbinoliidae), on soft-bottom substrates. Observational experiments were used to clarify how the sea floor niche is exploited by turbinoliids. Deltocyathoides orientalis is adapted to an infaunal mode of life and exhibits behaviours associated with automobility that include burrowing into sediments, vertical movement through sediments to escape burial, and recovery of an upright position after being overturned. These behaviours were achieved through repeated expansion and contraction of their peripheral soft tissues, which constitute a unique muscle-membrane system. Histological analysis showed that these muscle arrangements were associated with deeply incised inter-costal spaces characteristic of turbinoliid corals. The oldest known turbinoliid, Bothrophoria ornata, which occurred in the Cretaceous (Campanian), also possessed a small, conical skeleton with highly developed costae. An infaunal mode of life became available to turbinoliids due to the acquisition of automobility through the muscle-membrane system at least 80 million years ago. The newly discovered active burrowing strategies described herein provide new insights into the use of an unattached mode of life by corals inhabiting soft-bottom substrates throughout the Phanerozoic.

  12. Correlated evolution of sex and reproductive mode in corals (Anthozoa: Scleractinia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerr, Alexander M.; Baird, Andrew H.; Hughes, Terry P.

    2011-01-01

    Sexuality and reproductive mode are two fundamental life-history traits that exhibit largely unexplained macroevolutionary patterns among the major groups of multicellular organisms. For example, the cnidarian class Anthozoa (corals and anemones) is mainly comprised of gonochoric (separate sex) brooders or spawners, while one order, Scleractinia (skeleton-forming corals), appears to be mostly hermaphroditic spawners. Here, using the most complete phylogeny of scleractinians, we reconstruct how evolutionary transitions between sexual systems (gonochorism versus hermaphrodism) and reproductive modes (brooding versus spawning) have generated large-scale taxonomic patterns in these characters. Hermaphrodites have independently evolved in three large, distantly related lineages consisting of mostly reef-building species. Reproductive mode in corals has evolved at twice the rate of sexuality, while the evolution of sexuality has been heavily biased: gonochorism is over 100 times more likely to be lost than gained, and can only be acquired by brooders. This circuitous evolutionary pathway accounts for the prevalence of hermaphroditic spawners among reef-forming scleractinians, despite their ancient gonochoric heritage. PMID:20659935

  13. Multi-skeleton model for top-down design of complex products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dexin Chu

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Generally, there are two alternative design approaches available to engineers: bottom-up and top-down. Considering the sharp increase in the complexity of most mechanical products, the top-down design approach is more widely adopted in the development of complex products. However, in traditional top-down design process, design parameters are communicated through single-skeleton models, and design units are strongly coupled due to the multi-dimensional complexity of products. Toward this end, a new top-down design approach based on multi-skeleton model is proposed in this article. First, in accordance with different kinds of design parameters, three major skeleton models are defined, including location skeleton model, published skeleton model, and design skeleton model. And the characteristics of multi-skeleton models are also described. Then, the top-down design process based on the multi-skeleton model is explored, especially in the multi-skeleton modeling phase. It is also illustrated in detail that how to realize design parameter transmission and design unit reuse. Subsequently, it elaborates the communicating way and structure optimization of design parameters to support parameters controlled publishing and design units reuse. Finally, a meteorological satellite and a crawler crane design cases are implemented to expound the feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed framework.

  14. Complexity of nearshore strontium-to-calcium ratio variability in a core sample of the massive coral Siderastrea siderea obtained in Coral Bay, St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reich, Christopher D.; Kuffner, Ilsa B.; Hickey, T. Don; Morrison, Jennifer M.; Flannery, Jennifer A.

    2013-01-01

    Strontium-to-calcium ratios (Sr/Ca) were measured on the skeletal matrix of a core sample from a colony of the massive coral Siderastrea siderea collected in Coral Bay, St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands. Strontium and calcium are incorporated into the coral skeleton during the precipitation of aragonite by the coral polyps and their ratio is highly temperature dependent. The robustness of this temperature dependence makes Sr/Ca a reliable proxy for sea surface temperature (SST). Details presented from the St. John S. siderea core indicate that terrestrial inputs of sediment and freshwater can disrupt the chemical balance and subsequently complicate the utility of Sr/Ca in reconstructing historical SST. An approximately 44-year-long record of Sr/Ca shows that an annual SST signal is recorded but with an increasing Sr/Ca trend from 1980 to present, which is likely the result of runoff from the mountainous terrain of St. John. The overwhelming influence of the terrestrial fingerprint on local seawater chemistry makes utilizing Sr/Ca as a SST proxy in nearshore environments very difficult.

  15. Assessing Coral Community Recovery from Coral Bleaching by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    cm) on three reefs in the Mombasa Marine National Park and Reserve on the southern fringing reef system of Kenya, and ... from sources of coral larvae from reefs in the south, and are seasonally influenced by nutrient-rich, cooler water due to the ..... the ENCORE experiment, Great Barrier Reef,. Australia. Proceedings of ...

  16. Assessing Coral Community Recovery from Coral Bleaching by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In 2003 and 2005, studies were carried out on the density of small coral colonies (less than 10 cm) on three reefs in the Mombasa Marine National Park and Reserve on the southern fringing reef system of Kenya, and on three reefs in the Kiunga Marine National Reserve in the north of the country. All the study sites were ...

  17. Nitrogen Isotopic Composition of Proteinaceous Coral Skeletal Amino Acids Records Change in Source Nitrate to the Euphotic Zone in the Western Tropical Pacific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, B.; Thibodeau, B.; Chikaraishi, Y.; Ohkouchi, N.; Grottoli, A. G.

    2014-12-01

    Instrumental and proxy data and global climate model experiments indicate a multi-decadal shoaling of the western tropical Pacific (WTP) thermocline potentially related to a shift in ENSO frequency. In the WTP, the nutricline coincides with the thermocline, and a shoaling of the nutricline brings more nitrate-rich seawater higher in the water column and within the sunlit euphotic zone. In the nutrient-poor WTP, this incursion of nitrate-rich water at the bottom of the euphotic zone may stimulate productivity in the water column. However, there is a general paucity of measurements below the surface with which to investigate recent changes in seawater chemistry. Nitrogen isotope (δ15N) measurements of particulate organic matter (POM) can elucidate the source of nitrogen to the WTP and related trophic dynamics. This POM is the food source to the long-lived proteinaceous corals, and drives the nitrogen isotopic composition of their skeleton. Here, we report time series δ15N values from the banded skeletons of proteinaceous corals from offshore Palau in the WTP that provide proxy information about past changes in euphotic zone nitrogen dynamics. Bulk skeletal δ15N values declined between 1977 and 2010 suggesting a progressively increasing contribution of deep water with isotopically-light nitrate to the euphotic zone and/or a shortening of the planktonic food web. Since only some amino acids are enriched in δ15N with each trophic transfer in a food web, we measured the δ15N composition of seven individual amino acids in the same coral skeleton. The δ15N time series of the individual amino acids also declined over time, mirroring the bulk values. These new data indicate that the changes in the source nitrogen to the base of the euphotic zone drives a decline in coral skeletal δ15N values, consistent with the shoaling nutricline, with no coinciding alteration of the trophic structure in the WTP.

  18. Coral 13C/12C records of vertical seafloor displacement during megathrust earthquakes west of Sumatra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gagan, Michael K.; Sosdian, Sindia M.; Scott-Gagan, Heather; Sieh, Kerry; Hantoro, Wahyoe S.; Natawidjaja, Danny H.; Briggs, Richard W.; Suwargadi, Bambang W.; Rifai, Hamdi

    2015-01-01

    The recent surge of megathrust earthquakes and tsunami disasters has highlighted the need for a comprehensive understanding of earthquake cycles along convergent plate boundaries. Space geodesy has been used to document recent crustal deformation patterns with unprecedented precision, however the production of long paleogeodetic records of vertical seafloor motion is still a major challenge. Here we show that carbon isotope ratios () in the skeletons of massive Porites   corals from west Sumatra record abrupt changes in light exposure resulting from coseismic seafloor displacements. Validation of the method is based on the coral  response to uplift (and subsidence) produced by the March 2005 Mw 8.6 Nias–Simeulue earthquake, and uplift further south around Sipora Island during a M∼8.4 megathrust earthquake in February 1797. At Nias, the average step-change in coral  was 0.6±0.1‰/m for coseismic displacements of +1.8 m and −0.4 m in 2005. At Sipora, a distinct change in Porites  microatoll growth morphology marks coseismic uplift of 0.7 m in 1797. In this shallow water setting, with a steep light attenuation gradient, the step-change in microatoll  is2.3‰/m, nearly four times greater than for the Nias Porites  . Considering the natural variability in coral skeletal , we show that the lower detection limit of the method is around 0.2 m of vertical seafloor motion. Analysis of vertical displacement for well-documented earthquakes suggests this sensitivity equates to shallow events exceedingMw∼7.2 in central megathrust and back-arc thrust fault settings. Our findings indicate that the coral  paleogeodesy technique could be applied to convergent tectonic margins throughout the tropical western Pacific and eastern Indian oceans, which host prolific coral reefs, and some of the world's greatest earthquake catastrophes. While our focus here is the link between coral , light exposure and coseismic crustal deformation, the same principles

  19. Multiple driving factors explain spatial and temporal variability in coral calcification rates on the Bermuda platform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venti, A.; Andersson, A.; Langdon, C.

    2014-12-01

    Experimental studies have shown that coral calcification rates are dependent on light, nutrients, food availability, temperature, and seawater aragonite saturation ( Ω arag), but the relative importance of each parameter in natural settings remains uncertain. In this study, we applied Calcein fluorescent dyes as time indicators within the skeleton of coral colonies ( n = 3) of Porites astreoides and Diploria strigosa at three study sites distributed across the northern Bermuda coral reef platform. We evaluated the correlation between seasonal average growth rates based on coral density and extension rates with average temperature, light, and seawater Ω arag in an effort to decipher the relative importance of each parameter. The results show significant seasonal differences among coral calcification rates ranging from summer maximums of 243 ± 58 and 274 ± 57 mmol CaCO3 m-2 d-1 to winter minimums of 135 ± 39 and 101 ± 34 mmol CaCO3 m-2 d-1 for P. astreoides and D. strigosa, respectively. We also placed small coral colonies ( n = 10) in transparent chambers and measured the instantaneous rate of calcification under light and dark treatments at the same study sites. The results showed that the skeletal growth of D. strigosa and P. astreoides, whether hourly or seasonal, was highly sensitive to Ω arag. We believe this high sensitivity, however, is misleading, due to covariance between light and Ω arag, with the former being the strongest driver of calcification variability. For the seasonal data, we assessed the impact that the observed seasonal differences in temperature (4.0 °C), light (5.1 mol photons m-2 d-1), and Ω arag (0.16 units) would have on coral growth rates based on established relationships derived from laboratory studies and found that they could account for approximately 44, 52, and 5 %, respectively, of the observed seasonal change of 81 ± 14 mmol CaCO3 m-2 d-1. Using short-term light and dark incubations, we show how the covariance of light

  20. Widespread Reduction in Coral Growth Rates on the Mesoamerican Reef Following the 1998 El Nino and Hurricane Mitch

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carilli, J. E.; Norris, R. D.; Hughen, K. A.

    2006-12-01

    Corals on the Mesoamerican Reef have been declining in health over the past few decades, and it is important to determine the cause, if conservation measures are to be effective. Cores from large Montastrea spp., Diploria strigosa, and Siderastrea siderea corals were collected in two locations on the Belizean barrier reef: 34 from Frank's Caye, Sapodilla Cayes, in the southern section and 7 from Dog Flea Caye, Turneffe Atoll, in the northern section. Most of the precipitation in this area occurs in southern Belize and Guatemala, therefore the corals from the Sapodilla Cayes may be more heavily impacted by land-based runoff than those at Turneffe Atoll. In 9 of 10 Montastrea and 2 Diploria cores from the Sapodilla Cayes, as well as 2 of 4 Montastrea cores from Turneffe Atoll analyzed so far, extension rates were significantly depressed coincident with unusually dense calcification during ~ 1998 or 1999. In 6 of the Montastrea cores from the Sapodilla Cayes and 1 from Turneffe Atoll, partial mortality was also observed coincident with this anomalous band. The oxygen isotopic and Sr/Ca ratios of the coral skeleton will be used to constrain the timing of this event, based upon cycles in these proxies corresponding to seasonal sea surface temperature fluctuations. These measures will also be used to determine whether high sea surface temperatures are concurrent with the abnormal growth band, which is expected if the stress band formed due to temperature- induced bleaching associated with the 1998 El Nino event. Ba/Ca ratios will be used as a proxy for terrigenous runoff to test the hypothesis that large, sediment-laden runoff plumes that occurred during Hurricane Mitch were also contemporaneous with the coral growth disturbance. We hypothesize that high sea surface temperatures and extraordinarily large runoff plumes were responsible for stressing the Mesoamerican corals, causing a reduction in extension rates, the formation of dense "stress" bands, and widespread

  1. 75 FR 39917 - Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Coral and Coral Reefs off the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-13

    ..., and South Atlantic; Coral and Coral Reefs off the Southern Atlantic States; Exempted Fishing Permit..., limited numbers of gorgonian corals from Federal waters, off the coast of North Carolina. The specimens... for Coral, Coral Reefs, and Live/Hardbottom Habitat of the South Atlantic Region. The applicant has...

  2. 76 FR 30110 - Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Coral and Coral Reefs Off the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-24

    ..., and South Atlantic; Coral and Coral Reefs Off the Southern Atlantic States; Exempted Fishing Permit... limited numbers of gorgonian corals from the exclusive economic zone (EEZ), off Port Canaveral, FL, north... implementing the Fishery Management Plan for Coral, Coral Reefs, and Live/Hardbottom Habitat of the South...

  3. The potential of the coral species Porites astreoides as a paleoclimate archive for the Tropical South Atlantic Ocean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pereira, Natan S.; Sial, Alcides N.; Frei, Robert

    2017-01-01

    The aragonitic skeletons of corals are unique archives of geochemical tracers that can be used as proxies for environmental conditions with high fidelity and sub-annual resolution. Such records have been extensively used for reconstruction of climatic conditions in the Pacific and Indian Oceans......, Red Sea and Caribbean, but lack for the Equatorial South Atlantic. Here we present coral-based records of Sr/Ca, δ18O and δ13C and the first δ18O–SST calibration for the scleractinian coral species Porites astreoides from the Rocas Atoll, Equatorial South Atlantic. The investigated geochemical proxies......–depended reconstruction with fidelity better than 0.5 °C for most of the record. Biases of up to 2 °C might be associated with reduced growth rate periods of the coral record. The Sr/Ca data show systematic, annual fluctuations but analyses are too imprecise to propose a Sr/Ca-SST calibration. The δ13C values are found...

  4. The cumulative impact of annual coral bleaching can turn some coral species winners into losers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grottoli, Andréa G; Warner, Mark E; Levas, Stephen J; Aschaffenburg, Matthew D; Schoepf, Verena; McGinley, Michael; Baumann, Justin; Matsui, Yohei

    2014-12-01

    Mass coral bleaching events caused by elevated seawater temperatures result in extensive coral loss throughout the tropics, and are projected to increase in frequency and severity. If bleaching becomes an annual event later in this century, more than 90% of coral reefs worldwide may be at risk of long-term degradation. While corals can recover from single isolated bleaching and can acclimate to recurring bleaching events that are separated by multiple years, it is currently unknown if and how they will survive and possibly acclimatize to annual coral bleaching. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that annual coral bleaching can dramatically alter thermal tolerance in Caribbean corals. We found that high coral energy reserves and changes in the dominant algal endosymbiont type (Symbiodinium spp.) facilitated rapid acclimation in Porites divaricata, whereas low energy reserves and a lack of algal phenotypic plasticity significantly increased susceptibility in Porites astreoides to bleaching the following year. Phenotypic plasticity in the dominant endosymbiont type of Orbicella faveolata did not prevent repeat bleaching, but may have facilitated rapid recovery. Thus, coral holobiont response to an isolated single bleaching event is not an accurate predictor of its response to bleaching the following year. Rather, the cumulative impact of annual coral bleaching can turn some coral species 'winners' into 'losers', and can also facilitate acclimation and turn some coral species 'losers' into 'winners'. Overall, these findings indicate that cumulative impact of annual coral bleaching could result in some species becoming increasingly susceptible to bleaching and face a long-term decline, while phenotypically plastic coral species will acclimatize and persist. Thus, annual coral bleaching and recovery could contribute to the selective loss of coral diversity as well as the overall decline of coral reefs in the Caribbean. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Spine and axial skeleton injuries in the National Football League.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mall, Nathan A; Buchowski, Jacob; Zebala, Lukas; Brophy, Robert H; Wright, Rick W; Matava, Matthew J

    2012-08-01

    The majority of previous literature focusing on spinal injuries in American football players is centered around catastrophic injuries; however, this may underestimate the true number of these injuries in this athletic cohort. The goals of this study were to (1) report the incidence of spinal and axial skeleton injuries, both minor and severe, in the National Football League (NFL) over an 11-year period; (2) determine the incidence of spinal injury by injury type, anatomic location, player position, mechanism of injury, and type of exposure (practice vs game); and (3) determine the average number of practices and days missed because of injury for each injury type. Descriptive epidemiological study. All documented injuries to the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine; pelvis; ribs; and spinal cord were retrospectively analyzed using the NFL's injury surveillance database over a period of 11 seasons from 2000 through 2010. The data were analyzed by the number of injuries per athlete-exposure, the anatomic location and type of injury, player position, mechanism of injury, and number of days missed per injury. A total of 2208 injuries occurred to the spine or axial skeleton over an 11-season interval in the NFL, with a mean loss of 25.7 days per injury. This represented 7% of the total injuries during this time period. Of these 2208 injuries, 987 (44.7%) occurred in the cervical spine. Time missed from play was greatest for thoracic disc herniations (189 days/injury). Other injuries that had a mean time missed greater than 30 days included (in descending order) cervical fracture (120 days/injury), cervical disc degeneration/herniation (85 days/injury), spinal cord injury (77 days/injury), lumbar disc degeneration/herniation (52 days/injury), thoracic fracture (34 days/injury), and thoracic nerve injury (30 days/injury). Offensive linemen were the most likely to suffer a spinal injury, followed by defensive backs, defensive linemen, and linebackers. Blocking and tackling

  6. Fungal invasion of massive corals

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Raghukumar, C.; Raghukumar, S.

    revealed a septate dark brown mycelial fungus on the surface and subsurface of the dead patches in five coral species. The fungus was isolated in culture and identified as Scolecobasidium sp. The fungus formed a distinct dense brown to black zone of 0...

  7. Coral reef surveys in India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Wafar, M.V.M.

    This paper briefly describes the history of coral reef surveys in India. All the surveys done so far have used simple techniques, but they have been quite effective in highlighting the damages to reefs in the short-term due to human interferences...

  8. Coral reefs in the Anthropocene

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hughes, Terry P.; Barnes, Michele L.; Bellwood, David R.; Cinner, Joshua E.; Cumming, Graeme S.; Jackson, Jeremy B.C.; Kleypas, Joanie; De Leemput, Van Ingrid A.; Lough, Janice M.; Morrison, Tiffany H.; Palumbi, Stephen R.; Nes, Van Egbert H.; Scheffer, Marten

    2017-01-01

    Coral reefs support immense biodiversity and provide important ecosystem services to many millions of people. Yet reefs are degrading rapidly in response to numerous anthropogenic drivers. In the coming centuries, reefs will run the gauntlet of climate change, and rising temperatures will transform

  9. Characterizing lesions in corals from American Samoa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Work, T. M.; Rameyer, R. A.

    2005-11-01

    The study of coral disease has suffered from an absence of systematic approaches that are commonly used to determine causes of diseases in animals. There is a critical need to develop a standardized and portable nomenclature for coral lesions in the field and to incorporate more commonly available biomedical tools in coral disease surveys to determine the potential causes of lesions in corals. We characterized lesions in corals from American Samoa based on gross and microscopic morphology and classi