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Characterization of dissolved organic matter in cave and spring waters using UV–Vis
absorbance and fluorescence spectroscopy
Justin E. Birdwell​a,​*​,​ ​Audrey Tourrette​b
​ a
Cain Department of Chemical Engineering, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA
​ b
Institute of Chemistry, University of the Philippines Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines

A condensed version of the entire paper; summarizes the four essential aspects of the paper, namely, purpose of the experiment, results (% yield, %
purity, etc.), significance of the study, and major conclusions. It should give one an idea of the scope of the study. It includes a very brief summary of the
major steps/techniques used in the experiment. Do not include too much background information. No detailed procedures and sources of errors.
Typically, 100-200 words.

Chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM) was examined using fluorescence and absorbance spectra from sulfidic cave and thermal and
non-thermal surface-discharging spring waters. Many of the sites have a limited allochthonous supply of organic matter (OM) and contain ecosystems
that are dependent on chemolithoautotrophic microbial communities. Water-extracted OM from microbial mats at the sites had fluorescence signatures
consistent with the fluorescent amino acids. Based on fluorescence-derived indices and absorbance spectral characteristics, the origin of the cave and
spring CDOM appeared to be from microbially-derived material, and the degree of OM humification was low. Little of the CDOM pool was represented by
terrestrial humic fluorescence signatures, which are typically observed in surface waters, as well as soil and sediment porewaters. Comparison of the
cave and spring waters with a wide array of reference humic substances and OM from other environments showed a continuum of spectral properties
constrained by origin and degree of humification.

1. Introduction Fluorolog- 3 spectrofluorometer (Jobin Yvon, Edison, NJ, USA)
equipped with a 450W Xe lamp, double excitation and emission
Provides pertinent background information about the study. monochromators and an extended red, high sensitivity, multi-alkali
Acquaints readers with the experiment. Should end with the photocathode photomultiplier tube (Hamamatsu Corporation,
objective(s) of the experiment. Bridgewater, NJ, USA) with slits set to 5 nm for both excitation and
It’s NOT just another version of the “INTRODUCTION” found in emission monochromators and using a 0.1 s integration time.
the manual.
2.2. Characterization
Dissolved organic matter (DOM) has been intensely investigated EEM fluorescence spectra were obtained by collecting a series of
in water systems around the world because of the significant roles 43 emission scans (kEm 250–550 nm, 2.5 nm intervals) at 5 nm
this ubiquitous material plays in various biogeochemical and excitation wavelength intervals between kEx 240 and 450 nm.
ecological processes (​Findlay and Sinsabaugh, 2003; Anesio et al.,
2004; Judd et al., 2006​). In natural settings, DOM parent material is 3. Results and Discussion
primarily derived from terrigenous and aquatic macro (e.g. plants,
animals) and microorganisms (e.g. algae, phytoplankton and Most important part of the report. Presents pertinent results of
bacteria). the experiment. Organizes data into tables, figures, graphs, etc.
Chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM), the fraction (whichever is appropriate). Should provide labels with short
that absorbs ultraviolet (UV) and visible light, is the controlling caption for each tables, figures, graphs, etc. Label for tables should
factor for the optical properties of surface waters (​Green and be on top of the table while label for figures should be below the
Blough, 1994​). figure.
Discussion should include the following:
2. Materials and Methods - Mechanism of the reaction(s)
- Purpose of each reagents
​Summarizes the procedure performed in the experiment in - Rationalization of method (purpose of each major techniques in
paragraph form (do not include parts that were not done). Past the methodology)
tense, passive voice. Do not include diagram or procedural steps in - Techniques used to increase the yield
preparing set-ups. - Interpretation of results (What is its significance?)
- Compare expected results with those obtained, account for any
Sample: difference
2.1. Synthesis - Possible reasons for low yield
- Assessment of product purity
All fluorescence measurements were made using a SPEX

*Corresponding author. Mobile: 09062510901
E-mail address:

73 mL) (3. followed by an exponential decrease with increasing wavelength beyond 280 nm. lacked significant terrestrial signatures and exhibited unique absorbance characteristics. Takács. J.. Harnish. J. Conclusion and Recommendations Summary of important results (should answer: “so what”). but aquatic humic substances in the Lake Fryxell Basin. Aiken. Mobile: 09062510901 E-mail address: justinbirdwell@yahoo. 1. D. American Public Health Association. NOT on the course or how it is being handled).1. C. A. Granéli. 1​). M. 4848–4854. 260– 270 nm range. important findings is that a substantial portion of CDOM in karst The EEM spectra of the cave and spring waters (​Fig. include suggestions for improvement (on the method used. panels a waters. Pear 1-propanol Acetic acid (6.Answers to questions that have no relevance/connection to the report. W.65 mL) (5. journals. DC. books. Alberts. Fig.. Washington. 157–188. Wershaw. 1996. other studies of marine and terrestrial CDOM (e. Applied (9. Influence of Peach Benzyl alcohol Acetic acid humic substances on bacterial and viral dynamics in freshwaters.g. Antarctica. Sample: The cave and spring waters displayed strong microbial *Corresponding author. G.M. Geochemistry of consistent with strong absorbance by fluorescent amino acids.43 mL) Appendices Pineapple Butyric acid Butyric acid (5.Other raw data not presented in the discussion Apple Methanol Butyric acid . Hollas. The absorbance spectra for the cave and spring waters had steep drops in optical density between 200 and 250 nm.51 mL) . 1998. R. One of the most Geochemical data for each of the samples are listed in ​Table 1​.Completely filled out data sheet with calculations (3. could also be due to the presence of a wide range of other specific Biogeochemistry 34.51 mL) . References 3. Banana 2-pentanol Acetic acid (9.. 243–256.. Gel permeation chromatogram of MePEG−PLA block copolymer.36 mL) (3. 2004. 2004. Total luminescence spectra of IHSS standards and reference fulvic acids. Organic Amount of Alcohol and Acid for a Specific Type of Ester Geochemistry 35. Sample Absorbance and Fluorescence Include at least 3 credible publications. Flavor Alcohol Acid Volume (mL) Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater.J. Laybourn-Perry. R. 20th ed. etc.. compounds that absorb in this region of the UV . Page | 2 3.. Volume(mL) American Public Health Association. Geochemical Analysis fluorescence features. and especially in sulfidic cave systems. humic acids and natural organic Table 1 matter: comparison of aquatic and terrestrial source terms.43 mL) and Environmental Microbiology 70.. Sample: Many samples had a peak or shoulder in the ca. ​Fig. 4.. Be direct in stating conclusion and recommendation (don’t include background information). McKnight.M. appears to be almost through i) contained many of the characteristic peaks observed in exclusively a result of in situ microbial activity. 2​.77 mL) (3. If necessary and possible. Discuss degree of success or failure of the experiment.2..26 mL) (5..43 mL) Anesio.