Limnology and Oceanography Letters
Sulfur (S) is a major heteroatom in organic matter. This project evaluated spatial variability in the concentration and molecular-level composition of organic sulfur along gradients of depth and latitude. We measured the concentration of total organic sulfur (TOS) directly from whole seawater. Our data reveal high variability in organic sulfur, relative to established variability in total organic carbon or nitrogen. The deep ocean contained significant amounts of organic sulfur, and the concentration of TOS in North Atlantic Deep Water (NADW) decreased with increasing age while total organic carbon remained stable. Analysis of dissolved organic matter extracts by ultrahigh resolution mass spectrometry revealed that 6% of elemental formulas contained sulfur. The sulfurcontaining compounds were structurally diverse, and showed higher numbers of sulfur-containing elemental formulas as NADW moved southward. These measurements of organic sulfur in seawater provide the foundation needed to define the factors controlling organic sulfur in the global ocean.
Original Publication Citation
Longnecker, K., Oswald, L., Soule, M. C. K., Cutter, G. A., & Kujawinski, E. B. Organic sulfur: A spatially variable and understudied component of marine organic matter. Limnology and Oceanography Letters, 5(4), 305-312. doi:https://doi.org/10.1002/lol2.10149
Longnecker, Krista; Oswald, Lisa; Kido Soule, Melissa C.; Cutter, Gregory A.; and Kujawinski, Elizabeth B., "Organic Sulfur: A Spatially Variable and Understudied Component of Marine Organic Matter" (2020). OES Faculty Publications. 381.