Ruben Sommaruga

Learn More
Solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR, 290-400 nm) is a crucial environmental factor in alpine lakes because of the natural increase of the UVR flux with elevation and the high water transparency of these ecosystems. The ecological importance of UVR, however, has only recently been recognized. This review, examines the general features of alpine lakes regarding(More)
The occurrence, identity, and activity of microbes from the class Actinobacteria was studied in the surface waters of 10 oligo- to mesotrophic mountain lakes located between 913 m and 2,799 m above sea level. Oligonucleotide probes were designed to distinguish between individual lineages within this group by means of fluorescence in situ hybridization(More)
While there is a general sense that lakes can act as sentinels of climate change, their efficacy has not been thoroughly analyzed. We identified the key response variables within a lake that act as indicators of the effects of climate change on both the lake and the catchment. These variables reflect a wide range of physical, chemical, and biological(More)
In order to avoid environmental threats, organisms may respond by altering behavior or phenotype. Using experiments performed in high-latitude Siberia and in temperate Sweden, we show for the first time that, among freshwater crustacean zooplankton, the defense against threats from ultraviolet radiation (UV) is a system where phenotypic plasticity and(More)
We studied the effects of natural sunlight on heterotrophic marine bacterioplankton in short-term experiments. We used a single-cell level approach involving flow cytometry combined with physiological probes and microautoradiography to determine sunlight effects on the activity and integrity of the cells. After 4 h of sunlight exposure, most bacterial cells(More)
We experimentally tested the hypothesis that accumulations of dietary compounds such as carotenoids or UVabsorbing mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) protect against natural levels of ultraviolet radiation (UVR). A calanoid copepod, Leptodiaptomus minutus, was collected from a relatively UV-transparent lake in Pennsylvania where levels of copepod MAAs and(More)
We studied the effect of solar radiation on the incorporation of [(sup3)H]thymidine ([(sup3)H]TdR) and [(sup14)C]leucine ([(sup14)C]Leu) by bacterioplankton in a high mountain lake and the northern Adriatic Sea. After short-term exposure (3 to 4 h) of natural bacterial assemblages to sunlight just beneath the surface, the rates of incorporation of(More)
Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is a globally important abiotic factor influencing ecosystem structure and function in multiple ways. While UV radiation can be damaging to most organisms, several factors act to reduce UV exposure of organisms in aquatic ecosystems, the most important of which is dissolved organic carbon (DOC). In alpine lakes, very low(More)
Bacterial production in glacial runoff and aquatic habitats along a c. 500 m transect from the ablation area of a Svalbard glacier (Midre Lovénbreen, 79 degrees N, 12 degrees E) down to a series of proglacial lakes in its forefield were assessed. In addition, a series of in situ experiments were conducted to test how different nutrient sources (glacial(More)
We investigated seasonal differences in community structure and activity (leucine incorporation) of the planktonic bacterial assemblage in the freshwater and brackish-water zones of a shallow coastal lagoon of the southwestern Atlantic Ocean. Alphaproteobacteria formed the dominant microbial group in both zones throughout the sampling period. After an(More)