Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2020-469
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2020-469

  18 Jan 2021

18 Jan 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal BG.

Bioaerosols in the Amazon rain forest: Temporal variations and vertical profiles of Eukarya, Bacteria and Archaea

Maria Prass1, Meinrat O. Andreae2,3, Alessandro C. de Araùjo4, Paulo Artaxo5, Florian Ditas1,a, Wolfgang Elbert1, Marco Aurélio Franco1,5, Isabella Hrabe de Angelis1, Jürgen Kesselmeier1,2, Thomas Klimach1, Leslie Ann Kremper1, Eckhard Thines6,7, David Walter1, Jens Weber1, Bettina Weber1,8, Bernhard M. Fuchs9, Ulrich Pöschl1, and Christopher Pöhlker1 Maria Prass et al.
  • 1Multiphase Chemistry Department, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, 55128 Mainz, Germany
  • 2Biogeochemistry Department, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, 55128 Mainz, Germany
  • 3Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92083, USA
  • 4Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária (EMBRAPA), Belém, PA, Brazil
  • 5Institute of Physics, University of São Paulo, São Paulo 05508-900, Brazil
  • 6Institute for Microbiology and Wine Research, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, 55128 Mainz, Germany
  • 7Institute of Molecular Physiology, Johannes Gutenberg University, 55128 Mainz, Germany
  • 8Department of Biology, University of Graz, Holteigasse 6, 8010, Graz, Austria
  • 9Department of Molecular Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, 28359 Bremen, Germany
  • anow at: Hessisches Landesamt für Naturschutz, Umwelt und Geologie, 65203 Wiesbaden, Germany

Abstract. The Amazon rain forest plays a major role in global hydrological cycling and biogenic aerosols are likely to influence the formation of clouds and precipitation. Information about the sources and altitude profiles of primary biological aerosol particles, however, is sparse. We used fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), a molecular biological staining technique largely unexplored in aerosol research, to investigate the sources and spatiotemporal distribution of Amazonian bioaerosols on domain level. We found wet season bioaerosol number concentrations in the range of 1–5 · 105 m−3 accounting for > 70 % of the coarse mode aerosol. Eukaryotic and bacterial particles predominated, with fractions of ~56 % and ~26 % of the intact airborne cells. Archaea occurred at very low concentrations. Vertical profiles exhibit a steep decrease of bioaerosol numbers from the understory to 325 m height on the Amazon Tall Tower Observatory, with a stronger decrease of Eukarya compared to Bacteria. Considering earlier investigations, our results can be regarded as representative for near-pristine Amazonian wet season conditions. The observed concentrations and profiles provide unprecedented insights into the sources and dispersion of different types of Amazonian bioaerosols as a solid basis for model studies on biosphere-atmosphere interactions such as bioprecipitation cycling.

Maria Prass et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on bg-2020-469', Anonymous Referee #1, 12 Feb 2021
  • RC2: 'Comment on bg-2020-469', Anonymous Referee #2, 19 Feb 2021
  • RC3: 'Comment on bg-2020-469', Anonymous Referee #3, 25 Feb 2021

Maria Prass et al.

Maria Prass et al.

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Short summary
Bioaerosols in the atmosphere over the Amazon rain forest were analyzed by molecular biological staining and microscopy. Eukaryotic, bacterial and archaeal aerosols were quantified in time series and altitude profiles exhibiting clear differences in number concentrations and vertical distributions. Our results provide insights into the sources and dispersion of different Amazonian bioaerosol types as a basis for a better understanding of biosphere-atmosphere interactions.
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