Degradation of organic phosphorus compounds in anoxic Baltic Sea sediments: A 31P nuclear magnetic resonance study

Ahlgren, Joakim, Kasper Reitzel, Lars Tranvik, Adolf Gogoll, Emil Rydin

Limnol. Oceanogr., 51(5), 2006, 2341-2348 | DOI: 10.4319/lo.2006.51.5.2341

ABSTRACT: The composition and abundance of phosphorus extracted by NaOH-ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid from anoxic Northwest Baltic Sea sediment was characterized and quantified using solution 31P nuclear magnetic resonance. Extracts from sediment depths down to 55 cm, representing 85 yr of deposition, contained 18.5 g m-2 orthophosphate. Orthophosphate monoesters, teichoic acid P, microbial P lipids, DNA P, and pyrophosphate corresponded to 6.7, 0.3, 1.1, 3.0, and 0.03 g P m-2, respectively. The degradability of these compound groups was estimated by their decline in concentration with sediment depth. Pyrophosphate had the shortest half-life (3 yr), followed by microbial P lipids with a half-life of 5 yr, DNA P (8 yr), and orthophosphate monoesters (16 yr). No decline in concentration with sediment depth was observed for orthophosphate or teichoic acid P.

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