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The effect of selective microbial degradation on the composition of mangrove derived pentacyclic triterpenols in surface sediments

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Harder,  J.
Department of Microbiology, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Koch, B. P., Harder, J., Lara, R. J., & Kattner, G. (2005). The effect of selective microbial degradation on the composition of mangrove derived pentacyclic triterpenols in surface sediments. Organic Geochemistry, 36(2), 273-285.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-D091-F
Abstract
The effect of sedimentary microbial communities on the composition of pentacyclic triterpenol markers as well as β-sitosterol was studied in mangrove surface sediments from North Brazil during a three months degradation experiment. Leaves of Rhizophora mangle, Avicennia germinans and Laguncularia racemosa were incubated with surface sediment and analysed using GC/MS for β-sitosterol, taraxerol, β-amyrin, germanicol, lupeol and betulin. Taraxerol showed the strongest resistance to microbial degradation and clearly increased up to 68% of the sum of the selected markers. Betulin was degraded completely after 40 days, most likely due to its higher polarity. By means of a numerical model the marker composition in surface sediments was explainable as a combination of the dominant input from R. mangle leaves and selective microbial degradation. Calculated marker degradation constants from the model were compared with measured constants in the experiment. On the basis of calculated constants the average age of the organic matter in the upper 1.5 m of sediment was approximately 530 yr.