Aquatic Sciences

, 80:26 | Cite as

Contribution of humic substances to dissolved organic matter optical properties and iron mobilization

  • Morimaru Kida
  • Nobuhide FujitakeEmail author
  • Vilanee Suchewaboripont
  • Sasitorn Poungparn
  • Mitsutoshi Tomotsune
  • Miyuki Kondo
  • Shinpei Yoshitake
  • Yasuo Iimura
  • Kazutoshi Kinjo
  • Chatree Maknual
  • Toshiyuki Ohtsuka
Research Article


Humic substances (HS) are the primary constituents of dissolved organic matter (DOM) and play pivotal roles in aquatic systems. Optical indices of DOM, such as specific UV absorbance (SUVA254), the fluorescence index (FI) and biological index (BIX), have gained wide interest because of their ease of use. In this study, we explored the relationship between HS and the indices in the Trat River Basin (eastern Thailand) from headwaters to the river mouth through the distinct dry and rainy seasons to examine whether changes in index values reflect variability in the relative contribution of HS to DOM, or %HS. The results show that %HS and the indices did not exhibit significant linear relationships (FI and BIX, P > 0.05), or the relationships changed seasonally (SUVA254). However, analyzing the indices versus %HS did show clear DOM composition changes by season with more humic-like or terrestrial material in the rainy season. Relationships between DOM and dissolved iron (dFe) concentrations were also explored. Separating the relationships of DOM versus dFe into HS versus dFe and non-HS versus dFe provides us the opportunity to better understand which fraction contributes more to dFe mobilization. The results indicate stronger positive linear relationships between HS and dFe concentrations independent of river tributary. Overall, this study highlights the importance of quantifying HS for the study of DOM dynamics or compositional changes along a river transect as well as for DOM-induced iron mobilization.


Biological index Fluorescence index Iron Optical index SUVA UV–Vis absorption 



We acknowledge that the manuscript was substantially improved by constructive comments from the editors and three reviewers. This study was supported by JSPS KAKENHI Grant nos. 15H05240 and 15H02805.

Supplementary material

27_2018_578_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (323 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 323 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Agricultural ScienceKobe UniversityKobeJapan
  2. 2.The United Graduate School of Agricultural ScienceGifu UniversityGifuJapan
  3. 3.Department of Botany, Faculty of ScienceChulalongkorn UniversityBangkokThailand
  4. 4.Center for Environmental Measurement and AnalysisNational Institute for Environmental StudiesTsukubaJapan
  5. 5.River Basin Research CenterGifu UniversityGifuJapan
  6. 6.School of Environmental ScienceThe University of Shiga PrefectureHikoneJapan
  7. 7.Faculty of AgricultureUniversity of the RyukyusNakagamiJapan
  8. 8.Department of Marine and Coastal ResourcesMinistry of Natural Resources and EnvironmentBangkokThailand
  9. 9.Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and SciencesWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan

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