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Our recent bioassay experiments indicate that molecular properties are a primary control on the microbial utilization of dissolved organic matter in the ocean. This finding is questioned by Lennartz and Dittmar who modeled our experiments and concluded that our observations could be largely explained by concentration-driven uptake independent from molecular properties. We suggest the authors' models are deficient for establishing the relative roles of molecular properties and concentration-driven uptake. Our conclusion is consistent with earlier and recent experimental results and biogeochemical observations, supporting a unified theory with molecular properties as a more prominent control than concentration-driven uptake on marine organic carbon accumulation.

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© 2022 The Authors. Limnology and Oceanography published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography.

This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.

APA Citation

Shen, Y., & Benner, R. (2022). Reply to comment: Controls on turnover of marine dissolved organic matter—testing the null hypothesis of purely concentration‐driven uptake. Limnology and Oceanography, 67(3), 680–683.