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Biologically mediated silicification of marine cyanobacteria and implications for the Proterozoic fossil record

Kelsey R. Moore, Mihkel Pajusalu, Jian Gong, Victor Sojo, Thomas Matreux, Dieter Braun and Tanja Bosak
Biologically mediated silicification of marine cyanobacteria and implications for the Proterozoic fossil record
Geology (Boulder) (May 2020) Pre-Issue Publication

Abstract

Silicification was a major mode of fossilization in Proterozoic peritidal environments, but marine silica concentrations and the chemical and biological mechanisms that drove microbial silicification and formation of early diagenetic chert in these environments remain poorly constrained. Here, we use taphonomy experiments to demonstrate that photosynthetically active cyanobacteria that are morphologically analogous to the oldest cyanobacterial fossil, Eoentophysalis, mediate the formation of magnesium-rich amorphous silica in seawater that is undersaturated with respect to silica. These results show that microbes in Proterozoic tidal environments may have mediated their own silicification at lower silica concentrations than previously assumed.


ISSN: 0091-7613
EISSN: 1943-2682
Coden: GLGYBA
Serial Title: Geology (Boulder)
Serial Volume: Pre-Issue Publication
Title: Biologically mediated silicification of marine cyanobacteria and implications for the Proterozoic fossil record
Affiliation: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Cambridge, MA, United States
Published: 20200529
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 27
Accession Number: 2020-062905
Categories: Sedimentary petrology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus.
Secondary Affiliation: Ludwig Maximilian University, DEU, Germany
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2020, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Update Code: 202018
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