Responses of the Macroalga Ulva prolifera Müller to Ocean Acidification Revealed by Complementary NMR- and MS-Based Omics Approaches
Ocean acidification (OA) is a dramatic perturbation of seawater environments due to increasing anthropogenic emissions of CO 2 . Several studies indicated that OA frequently induces marine biota stress and a reduction of biodiversity. Here, we adopted the macroalga Ulva prolifera as a model and applied a complementary multi-omics approach to investigate the metabolic profiles under normal and acidified conditions. Our results show that U. prolifera grows at higher rates in acidified environments. Consistently, we observed lower sucrose and phosphocreatine concentrations in response to a higher demand of energy for growth and a higher availability of essential amino acids, likely related to increased protein biosynthesis. In addition, pathways leading to signaling and deterrent compounds appeared perturbed. Finally, a remarkable shift was observed here for the first time in the fatty acid composition of triglycerides, with a decrease in the relative abundance of PUFAs towards an appreciable increase of palmitic acid, thus suggesting a remodeling in lipid biosynthesis. Overall, our studies revealed modulation of several biosynthetic pathways under OA conditions in which, besides the possible effects on the marine ecosystem, the metabolic changes of the alga should be taken into account considering its potential nutraceutical applications.