Project description:Understanding glacier mass balance (MB) change under global warming is important to assess the impact of glacier change on water resources. This study evaluated the applicability of a modified distributed surface energy balance model (DSEBM) with 3-h temporal and 100-m spatial resolution to the alpine Dongkemadi Glacier (DKMD) in the central Tibetan Plateau region, analyzed the causes of glacier MB variations with respect to energy balance, and evaluated MB changes under various climate scenarios. Results showed that: (i) the modified model can describe surface energy and MB of XDKMD well; (ii) net shortwave and longwave radiation, accounting for more than 80% of total heat flux, dominated the glacier energy balance during both summer and winter months; (iii) summer MB spatial patterns dominated annual MB, consistent with the fact that DKMD is a summer accumulation type glacier; and (iv) effect of increase in air temperature on glacier MB is higher than that of decrease in air temperature. The sensitivity of MB revealed by the modified DSEBM can help to understand MB changes influenced by the climate changes and to regulate water management strategies to adapt to climate changes at the catchment scale.
Project description:Metaeuchromiusglacialis Li, sp. n. is described from the Tibetan glacier area of China. The new species is similar to Metaeuchromiuscirce Bleszynski by the distal projection of costa exceeding the apex of valva, and the phallus with strong spine-like cornuti in the male genitalia. Images of male adult, tympanal and scent organs as well as genitalia of the new species are provided.
Project description:A comprehensive analysis of the variable temporal and spatial responses of tropical-subtropical high-altitude glaciers to climate change is critical for successful model predictions and environmental risk assessment in the Himalayan-Tibetan orogen. High-frequency Holocene glacier chronostratigraphies are therefore reconstructed in 79 glaciated valleys across the orogen using 519 published and 16 new terrestrial cosmogenic <sup>10</sup>Be exposure age dataset. Published <sup>10</sup>Be ages are compiled only for moraine boulders (excluding bedrock ages). These ages are recalculated using the latest ICE-D production rate calibration database and the scaling scheme models. Outliers for the individual moraine are detected using the Chauvenet's criterion. In addition, past equilibrium-line altitudes (ELAs) are determined using the area-altitude (AA), area accumulation ratio (AAR), and toe-headwall accumulation ratio (THAR) methods for each glacier advance. The modern maximum elevations of lateral moraines (MELM) are also used to estimate modern ELAs and as an independent check on mean ELAs derived using the above three methods. These data may serve as an essential archive for future studies focusing on the cryospheric and environmental changes in the Himalayan-Tibetan orogen. A more comprehensive analysis of the published and new <sup>10</sup>Be ages and ELA results and a list of references are presented in Saha et al. (2019, High-frequency Holocene glacier fluctuations in the Himalayan-Tibetan orogen. Quaternary Science Reviews, 220, 372-400).
Project description:Most glaciers in the Himalayas and the Tibetan Plateau are retreating, and glacier melt has been emphasized as the dominant driver for recent lake expansions on the Tibetan Plateau. By investigating detailed changes in lake extents and levels across the Tibetan Plateau from Landsat/ICESat data, we found a pattern of dramatic lake changes from 1970 to 2010 (especially after 2000) with a southwest-northeast transition from shrinking, to stable, to rapidly expanding. This pattern is in distinct contrast to the spatial characteristics of glacier retreat, suggesting limited influence of glacier melt on lake dynamics. The plateau-wide pattern of lake change is related to precipitation variation and consistent with the pattern of permafrost degradation induced by rising temperature. More than 79% of lakes we observed on the central-northern plateau (with continuous permafrost) are rapidly expanding, even without glacial contributions, while lakes fed by retreating glaciers in southern regions (with isolated permafrost) are relatively stable or shrinking. Our study shows the limited role of glacier melt and highlights the potentially important contribution of permafrost degradation in predicting future water availability in this region, where understanding these processes is of critical importance to drinking water, agriculture, and hydropower supply of densely populated areas in South and East Asia.
Project description:As the two limiting nutrients for plants in most terrestrial ecosystems, nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) are essential for the development of succession forests. Vegetation N:P stoichiometry is a useful tool for detecting nutrient limitation. In the present work, chronosequence analysis was employed to research N and P accumulation dynamics and their stoichiometry during forest primary succession in a glacier retreat area on the Tibetan Plateau. Our results showed that: (1) total ecosystem N and P pools increased from 97 kg hm-2 to 7186 kg hm-2 and 25 kg hm-2 to 487 kg hm-2, respectively, with increasing glacier retreat year; (2) the proportion of the organic soil N pool to total ecosystem N sharply increased with increasing glacier retreat year, but the proportion of the organic soil and the vegetation P pools to the total ecosystem P was equivalent after 125 y of recession; (3) the N:P ratio for tree leaves ranged from 10.1 to 14.3, whereas the N:P ratio for total vegetation decreased form 13.3 to 8.4 and remained constant after 35 y of recession, and the N:P ratio for organic soil increased from 0.2 to 23.1 with increasing glacier retreat. These results suggested that organic soil N increased with increasing years of glacier retreat, which may be the main sink for atmospheric N, whereas increased P accumulation in vegetation after 125 y of recession suggested that much of the soil P was transformed into the biomass P pool. As the N:P ratio for vegetation maintained a low level for 35-125 y of recession, we suggested that N might be the main limiting element for plant growth in the development of this ecosystem.
Project description:Metagenomic sequencing has contributed important new knowledge about the microbes that live in a symbiotic relationship with humans. With modern sequencing technology it is possible to generate large numbers of sequencing reads from a metagenome but analysis of the data is challenging. Here we present the bioinformatics pipeline MEDUSA that facilitates analysis of metagenomic reads at the gene and taxonomic level. We also constructed a global human gut microbial gene catalogue by combining data from 4 studies spanning 3 continents. Using MEDUSA we mapped 782 gut metagenomes to the global gene catalogue and a catalogue of sequenced microbial species. Hereby we find that all studies share about half a million genes and that on average 300,000 genes are shared by half the studied subjects. The gene richness is higher in the European studies compared to Chinese and American and this is also reflected in the species richness. Even though it is possible to identify common species and a core set of genes, we find that there are large variations in abundance of species and genes.
Project description:We find evidence that black soot aerosols deposited on Tibetan glaciers have been a significant contributing factor to observed rapid glacier retreat. Reduced black soot emissions, in addition to reduced greenhouse gases, may be required to avoid demise of Himalayan glaciers and retain the benefits of glaciers for seasonal fresh water supplies.
Project description:Members of the family Araneidae are common orb-weaving spiders, and they produce several types of silks throughout their behaviors and lives, from reproduction to foraging. Egg sac, prey capture thread, or dragline silk possesses characteristic mechanical properties, and its variability makes it a highly attractive material for ecological, evolutional, and industrial fields. However, the complete set of constituents of silks produced by a single species is still unclear, and novel spidroin genes as well as other proteins are still being found. Here, we present the first genome in genus Araneus together with the full set of spidroin genes with unamplified long reads and confirmed with transcriptome of the silk glands and proteome analysis of the dragline silk. The catalogue includes the first full length sequence of a paralog of major ampullate spidroin MaSp3, and several spider silk-constituting elements designated SpiCE. Family-wide phylogenomic analysis of Araneidae suggests the relatively recent acquisition of these genes, and multiple-omics analyses demonstrate that these proteins are critical components in the abdominal spidroin gland and dragline silk, contributing to the outstanding mechanical properties of silk in this group of species.
Project description:The β radioactivity of snow-pit samples collected in the spring of 2011 on four Tibetan Plateau glaciers demonstrate a remarkable peak in each snow pit profile, with peaks about ten to tens of times higher than background levels. The timing of these peaks suggests that the high radioactivity resulted from the Fukushima nuclear accident that occurred on March 11, 2011 in eastern Japan. Fallout monitoring studies demonstrate that this radioactive material was transported by the westerlies across the middle latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. The depth of the peak β radioactivity in each snow pit compared with observational precipitation records, suggests that the radioactive fallout reached the Tibetan Plateau and was deposited on glacier surfaces in late March 2011, or approximately 20 days after the nuclear accident. The radioactive fallout existed in the atmosphere over the Tibetan Plateau for about one month.
Project description:The metamorphism of snow (snowmelt process) has a potential influence on chemical and physical process occurring within it. This study carried out a detailed study on the variation of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in different stages of snowmelt in a typical mountain glacier located at Tibetan Plateau through collecting four different surface snow/ice categories, i.e., fresh snow, fine firn, coarse firn, and granular ice during May to October in 2015. The dissolved organic carbon (DOC) was observed by lost 44% from fresh snow to fine firn and enriched 129% from fine firn to granular ice, reflecting the dynamic variability in DOC concentration during snow metamorphism. The absorbance properties of each snow category are positively correlated with DOC concentration. The result of excitation emission matrix fluorescence with parallel factor analysis (EEM-PARAFAC) and Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FT-ICR MS) highlighted the domination of lipid- and protein-like compounds in glacial-derived DOM. The molecular composition of the DOM also exhibited a new N-containing molecular formula (CHON classes) that was enriched during snow metamorphism. This study suggests that snow metamorphism could induce a loss of DOM as well as enrich and modify the DOM.