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Other Publications Year : 2016

Ecological Stoichiometry

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Mehdi Cherif
James Elser
  • Function : Author

Abstract

The common framework provided by the study of multiple chemical elements pointed the way toward integration of diverse fields within ecology (physiological ecology, community ecology, biogeochemistry) and of ecology with other realms of biology, such as evolutionary biology. The possibility of direct elemental (P) limitation of consumer growth due to its "dilution" in the C-rich biomass that is generated when photoautotrophs (algae, plants) are nutrient-limited was inferred by workers studying freshwater zooplankton and reported in early papers such as Urabe and Watanabe 1992 and Sterner and Hessen 1994. The impacts of such stoichiometric imbalance on nutrient recycling were analyzed mathematically and compared to existing data (Sterner 1990). Soon thereafter, researchers began to hypothesize about the biochemical and evolutionary drivers that are responsible for the C:N:P ratios that characterize biomass of both consumers and producers, suggesting an important role of growth rate-related allocation to P-rich ribosomal RNA in the "growth rate hypothesis" that is developed in Elser, et al. 1996. Sterner and Elser 2002 is a foundational work that brought together a large number of disparate research threads in ecology and stimulated considerable new research, including an expansion of stoichiometric thinking into new realms ("biological stoichiometry"), such as biochemical allocation, life history evolution, and even cancer dynamics.
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hal-03699520 , version 1 (20-06-2022)

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Mehdi Cherif, James Elser. Ecological Stoichiometry. 2016, ⟨10.1093/obo/9780199830060-0146⟩. ⟨hal-03699520⟩

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