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Article

Coastal Bacterial Community Response to Glacier Melting in the Western Antarctic Peninsula

1
Department of Oceanography, Universidad de Concepcion, Concepcion 4030000, Chile
2
Center for Climate and Resilience Research (CR)2, Santiago 8320000, Chile
3
Escuela de Medicina, Universidad Espíritu Santo, Guayaquil 0901952, Ecuador
4
Centro de Investigación en Recursos Naturales y Sustentabilidad, Universidad Bernardo O’Higgins, Santiago 8370993, Chile
5
Facultad de Ingeniería, Ciencia y Tecnología, Universidad Bernardo O’Higgins, Santiago 8370993, Chile
6
Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago 8331150, Chile
7
Alfred-Wegener-Institute, Helmholtz-Centre for Polar and Marine Research, 27570 Bremerhaven, Germany
8
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
9
Departamento de Biología de Sistemas, Centro Nacional de Biotecnología (CSIC), Darwin 3, 28049 Madrid, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Microorganisms 2021, 9(1), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms9010088
Received: 6 November 2020 / Revised: 20 December 2020 / Accepted: 21 December 2020 / Published: 1 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbes in the Cryosphere)
Current warming in the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) has multiple effects on the marine ecosystem, modifying the trophic web and the nutrient regime. In this study, the effect of decreased surface salinity on the marine microbial community as a consequence of freshening from nearby glaciers was investigated in Chile Bay, Greenwich Island, WAP. In the summer of 2016, samples were collected from glacier ice and transects along the bay for 16S rRNA gene sequencing, while in situ dilution experiments were conducted and analyzed using 16S rRNA gene sequencing and metatranscriptomic analysis. The results reveal that certain common seawater genera, such as Polaribacter, Pseudoalteromonas and HTCC2207, responded positively to decreased salinity in both the bay transect and experiments. The relative abundance of these bacteria slightly decreased, but their functional activity was maintained and increased the over time in the dilution experiments. However, while ice bacteria, such as Flavobacterium and Polaromonas, tolerated the increased salinity after mixing with seawater, their gene expression decreased considerably. We suggest that these bacterial taxa could be defined as sentinels of freshening events in the Antarctic coastal system. Furthermore, these results suggest that a significant portion of the microbial community is resilient and can adapt to disturbances, such as freshening due to the warming effect of climate change in Antarctica. View Full-Text
Keywords: glacial melting; bacterial microbial community; coastal Antarctic zone glacial melting; bacterial microbial community; coastal Antarctic zone
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MDPI and ACS Style

Alcamán-Arias, M.E.; Fuentes-Alburquenque, S.; Vergara-Barros, P.; Cifuentes-Anticevic, J.; Verdugo, J.; Polz, M.; Farías, L.; Pedrós-Alió, C.; Díez, B. Coastal Bacterial Community Response to Glacier Melting in the Western Antarctic Peninsula. Microorganisms 2021, 9, 88. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms9010088

AMA Style

Alcamán-Arias ME, Fuentes-Alburquenque S, Vergara-Barros P, Cifuentes-Anticevic J, Verdugo J, Polz M, Farías L, Pedrós-Alió C, Díez B. Coastal Bacterial Community Response to Glacier Melting in the Western Antarctic Peninsula. Microorganisms. 2021; 9(1):88. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms9010088

Chicago/Turabian Style

Alcamán-Arias, María E., Sebastián Fuentes-Alburquenque, Pablo Vergara-Barros, Jerónimo Cifuentes-Anticevic, Josefa Verdugo, Martin Polz, Laura Farías, Carlos Pedrós-Alió, and Beatriz Díez. 2021. "Coastal Bacterial Community Response to Glacier Melting in the Western Antarctic Peninsula" Microorganisms 9, no. 1: 88. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms9010088

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