Study: Ocean planktons responsible for half of Earth’s oxygen production

On the basis of the findings of the most comprehensive study thus far on ocean planktons, researchers have asserted that half of the Earth’s oxygen production is attributable to these microorganisms.

In the Tara Ocean Project, the study researchers affirmed that the role of planktons is not only restricted just as whale food. Planktons are placed in the bottom of the marine food chain. They can be of different types, including small bacteria, viruses, plants, fish larvae, and animals.

For the project, the researchers remained aboard the schooner Tara for three and a half years and travelled 87,000 miles. During their search, the researchers were able to collect 5,000 plankton samples from 201 different sites.

From the data, the researchers conducted different things like the microbes’ distribution, tracing plankton interaction and also carried out genetic analysis. Chris Bowler, a research director at the National Center for Scientific Research, said that plankton has much more to do than just be the food source of whales.

Amongst all, extremely small planktons are very important for earth’s life support system. They perform photosynthesis process and provide oxygen. Plankton removes carbon dioxide from earth’s atmosphere and performs the process of photosynthesis to convert carbon dioxide into organic carbon.

The research carried out the DNA sequencing and found around 40 million plankton genes, which were most undiscovered before. The researchers also came to know that majority of plankton organisms' interactions were parasitic relationships.

Jennifer Brum, a University of Arizona oceanographer, said that every mouthful of seawater has around 200 million viruses. More than 5,000 virus populations were discovered in upper parts of earth’s oceans. But 39 of them were new virus types.

The research can prove beneficial in many ways, including revealing about how food chains are organized to how climate change affects ecosystems.

User login

You May Have Missed...

Health experts warn overeye-related diseases in Monsson season
Wed, 07/22/2015 - 12:45

Health experts have warned that the monsoon season in the country might result in the eye-related diseases and advised people not to use...

Nigeria Update

Fresh Polio Cases lead to WHO Travel Restrictions on Pakistan and Syria
Tue, 05/06/2014 - 00:45

World Health Organization has slapped international travel restrictions on Pakistan, Cameroon...

Economy Watch

US Import Prices decline in April
Thu, 05/14/2015 - 01:13

For a straight 10th month, US import prices declined in April. The decline could be due to the...

Health Tonight

Most influentialpeople are not usually well connected on social network
Sat, 07/04/2015 - 02:32

According to a new research study, the most influential people on social networks are usually...

Science Tonight

Australia might consider threatened species trust
Thu, 07/16/2015 - 14:18

The authorities in Australia have indicated that it is considering creating a Zealand-style...

UK News

Prince Harry meets 3-week-old Princess Charlotte
Mon, 05/25/2015 - 13:26

Prince Harry recently met three-week-old Princess Charlotte for the first time as he was...


Astrazeneca’s Experimental Drug to Treat COPD Fails to Reduce Acute Exacerbation
Mon, 09/08/2014 - 13:17

On Monday, AstraZeneca PLC announced that Phase IIa study of benralizumab, an experimental drug...

US News

Scientists develop new techniques to spot alien life
Wed, 06/24/2015 - 12:31

A team of scientists have developed new techniques to detect alien life forms on other planets...

Technology Tonight

Apple trying to ensure greater performance standards from its older devices
Sat, 05/23/2015 - 08:31

In what apparently is somewhat of a 'back to basics' move by US tech giant Apple, the company...