TitleExtracellular phosphatases produced by phytoplankton and other sources in shallow eutrophic lakes (Wuhan, China): taxon-specific versus bulk activity
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsCao, XY, Song, C, Zhou, Y, Strojsova, A, Znachor, P, Zapomelova, E, Vrba, J
Pagination95 - 104
KeywordsAlgae, ELF97 phosphate, Heterotrophic flagellates, Phosphorus regeneration, Polymictic lakes, Protozoa

Extracellular phosphatases are an important part of the phosphorus cycle in aquatic environments. Phosphatase activity (PA) in plankton was studied in seven subtropical shallow lakes of different exploitation management and trophic status in the urban area of Wuhan City. Bulk PA was rather high (range 1.1-11 mu mol l(-1) h(-1)), although concentrations of soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP) were also high (range 27 mu g P l(-1) to similar to 1.5 mg P l(-1)) in all lakes. Cell-associated extracellular PA in phytoplankton was detected using the fluorescence-labelled enzyme activity technique. Phytoplankton species partly contributed to the bulk PA. We found explicit differences in the presence of cell-associated phosphatase within the main phytoplankton groups; species belonging to Chlorophyta and Dinophyta were regularly phosphatase-positive, while Cyanophyta and Bacillariophyceae were phosphatase-negative in all but one case. Furthermore, there is a certain potential of extracellular phosphatases produced by heterotrophic nanoflagellates in most of the lakes. This new finding compromises the ‘traditional’ interpretation of bulk phosphatase data as being due to overall phytoplankton or bacterial P regeneration.