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Many marine microorganisms produce polysaccharide-rich transparent exopolymer particles (TEPs) for rather unknown reasons but with important consequences for the ocean carbon cycle, sea–air gas exchange and formation of organic aerosols. Here we compare surface–ocean distributions of TEPs and physical, chemical and biological variables along a N–S transect in the Atlantic Ocean. Our data suggest that phytoplankton and not bacteria are the main TEP producers, and solar radiation acts as a sink.
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BG | Articles | Volume 16, issue 3
Biogeosciences, 16, 733–749, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-16-733-2019
Biogeosciences, 16, 733–749, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-16-733-2019

Research article 06 Feb 2019

Research article | 06 Feb 2019

Main drivers of transparent exopolymer particle distribution across the surface Atlantic Ocean

Marina Zamanillo et al.

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Cited articles

Agawin, N. S. R., Duarte, C. M., and Agustí, S.: Nutrient and temperature control of the contribution of picoplankton to phytoplankton biomass and production, Limnol. Oceanogr., 45, 591–600, 2000. 
Agustí, S. and Llabrés, M.: Solar Radiation-induced Mortality of Marine Pico-phytoplankton in the Oligotrophic Ocean, Photochem. Photobiol., 83, 793–801, 2007. 
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Alldredge, A. L., Passow, U., and Logan, B. E.: The abundance and significance of a class of large, transparent organic particles in the ocean, Deep-Sea Res. Pt. I, 40, 1131–1140, 1993. 
Alldredge, A. L., Passow, U., and Haddock, S. H. D.: The characteristics and transparent exopolymer particle (TEP) content of marine snow formed from thecate dinoflagellates, J. Plankton Res., 20, 393–406, 1998. 
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Short summary
Many marine microorganisms produce polysaccharide-rich transparent exopolymer particles (TEPs) for rather unknown reasons but with important consequences for the ocean carbon cycle, sea–air gas exchange and formation of organic aerosols. Here we compare surface–ocean distributions of TEPs and physical, chemical and biological variables along a N–S transect in the Atlantic Ocean. Our data suggest that phytoplankton and not bacteria are the main TEP producers, and solar radiation acts as a sink.
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