Distributions of microbial activities in deep subseafloor sediments

Steven D'Hondt, Bo Barker Jørgensen, D. Jay Miller, Anja Batzke, Ruth Blake, Barry A. Cragg, Heribert Cypionka, Gerald R. Dickens, Timothy Ferdelman, Kai Uwe Hinrichs, Nils G. Holm, Richard Mitterer, Arthur Spivack, Guizhi Wang, Barbara Bekins, Bert Engelen, Kathryn Ford, Glen Gettemy, Scott D. Rutherford, Henrik SassC. Gregory Skilbeck, Ivano W. Aiello, Gilles Guèrin, Christopher H. House, Fumio Inagaki, Patrick Meister, Thomas Naehr, Sachiko Niitsuma, R. John Parkes, Axel Schippers, David C. Smith, Andreas Teske, Juergen Wiegel, Christian Naranjo Padilla, Juana Luz Solis Acosta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

563 Scopus citations


Diverse microbial communities and numerous energy-yielding activities occur in deeply buried sediments of the eastern Pacific Ocean. Distributions of metabolic activities often deviate from the standard model. Rates of activities, cell concentrations, and populations of cultured bacteria vary consistently from one subseafloor environment to another. Net rates of major activities principally rely on electron acceptors and electron donors from the photosynthetic surface world. At open-ocean sites, nitrate and oxygen are supplied to the deepest sedimentary communities through the underlying basaltic aquifer. In turn, these sedimentary communities may supply dissolved electron donors and nutrients to the underlying crustal biosphere.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2216-2221
Number of pages6
Issue number5705
StatePublished - Dec 24 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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