Energize New Mexico
National Science Foundation
The oceans have substantial potential for climate change mitigation due to their capacity to sequester carbon from the atmosphere. A crucial role has marine organic matter. By using novel direct-infusion-Fourier transform-ion cyclotron resonance-mass spectrometry, we report here that within an open Atlantic Ocean hundreds of distinct sulfur-containing lipids (S-lipids) exist which are 95% not recognized pointing to huge gap of knowledge on the S-lipid ecological role. We found that the upper ocean is dominated by unsaturated S-lipids (Mw>600 Da). Their depth-related transformations cause incomplete degradation/transformation and depth accumulation of the more refractory saturated compounds with reduced Mwï¾455 Da. We conclude that saturated S-lipids have the potential to transfer carbon to deep ocean, hence they are important vectors for carbon sequestration on a global scale.
Schaub, Tanner. "Particulate sulfur-containing lipids: Production and cycling from the epipelagic to the abyssopelagic zone." (2018). https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/energizenm/682