DMS formation by dimethylsulfoniopropionate route in freshwater

B. Ginzburg, I. Chalifa, J. Gun, I. Dor, O. Hadas, O. Lev*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Dimethyl sulfide, the most important form of sulfur gas, is formed by bacterial degradation of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) in the Lake of Galilee. DMSP is believed to be a methionine metabolite produced by marine algae and higher plants as part of their osmoregulatory systems. Until now, this process was found exclusively in saline water and therefore was regarded as insignificant for the formation of DMS in freshwaters. It is hereby demonstrated that the process can be dominant in freshwater systems as well, and its product can even affect the odor quality of some drinking and recreational water systems. Peridinium gatunense, a freshwater dinoflagellate which dominates the phytoplankton population in the lake during the winter- spring season, stores a considerable amount (up to 5.5 pg/cell) of DMSP. P. gatunense growth curves reveal an increased storage of DMSP toward the stationary and declining growth phases. The DMSP undergoes bacterial and chemical degradation to release DMS. Released fluxes of DMS from the Lake of Galilee are estimated to be in the range of 0.1 mmol/m2 month during the late period of the Peridinium bloom season.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)2130-2136
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number14
StatePublished - 15 Jul 1998


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