Structure and Dynamics of Pico-, Nano- and Microplankton by Combining Together Flow Cytometry Data and Imaging

Gerald Gregori1, Tina Silovic2,3, Melilotus Thyssen1 and Michel Denis1, (1)Aix Marseille University, CNRS, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, Marseille, France, (2)Aix Marseille University, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography, Marseille, France, (3)Cytobuoy b.v., Woerden, Netherlands
Microbes thrive on earth since at least 3 billion years and had to face since then many and huge variations in their environment giving rise to an extreme diversity still largely unknown. In the ocean, one can distinguish autotrophic phytoplankton and heterotrophic microorganisms and both compartments are known to play a major role in marine ecosystems. The object of the present proposal is to introduce how the combination of flow cytometry data and imaging, combined in a single automated instrument, makes possible to study the structure and dynamics of these microorganisms thanks to near-real-time and precise characterization of the various compartments met in situ, from pico to microplankton, in relation to the environmental variables. That kind of data provides new insights in the functioning of the marine pelagic ecosystem.