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Journal of Plankton Research
Vol. 37 (1), 2015, Pages: 16-20

Effect of P-limitation on prokaryotic and viral production in surface waters of the Northwestern Mediterranean Sea

Chiaki Motegi, Karl Kaiser, Ronald Benner and Markus G. Weinbauer

Takuvik Joint International Laboratory, Université Laval (Canada)—CNRS (France); Département de Biologie and Québec-Océan, Université Laval, Canada G1V 0A6.


The effect of P-limitation and viral infection on prokaryotic production (PP) and respiration was determined during the early winter in the Northwestern Mediterranean Sea. Addition of P enhanced prokaryotic growth and viral production. The concentrations of total dissolved nitrogen increased linearly with decreasing viral abundance, PP and growth efficiency across treatments. Our data suggest that microbial growth can also be P-limited in winter and that viral lysis products can be readily used by prokaryotes depending on nutrient availability.

Keywords: virus–prokaryotes interactions, dissolved organic matter, total nitrogen, marine environments.

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