Biophysical properties at patch scale shape the metabolism of biofilm landscapes

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  • Anna Depetris
  • Giorgia Tagliavini
  • Hannes Peter
  • Kuhl, Michael
  • Markus Holzner
  • Tom J. Battin

Phototrophic biofilms form complex spatial patterns in streams and rivers, yet, how community patchiness, structure and function are coupled and contribute to larger-scale metabolism remains unkown. Here, we combined optical coherence tomography with automated O2 microprofiling and amplicon sequencing in a flume experiment to show how distinct community patches interact with the hydraulic environment and how this affects the internal distribution of oxygen. We used numerical simulations to derive rates of community photosynthetic activity and respiration at the patch scale and use the obtained parameter to upscale from individual patches to the larger biofilm landscape. Our biofilm landscape approach revealed evidence of parallels in the structure-function coupling between phototrophic biofilms and their streambed habitat.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5
Journalnpj Biofilms and Microbiomes
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2022

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© 2022, The Author(s).

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