Metagenomic signatures of the Peru Margin subseafloor biosphere show a genetically distinct environment

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doi: 10.1073/pnas.0709942105
Author(s): Biddle, Jennifer F.; Fitz-Gibbon, Sorel; Schuster, Stephan C.; Brenchley, Jean E.; House, Christopher H.
Author Affiliation(s): Primary:
Pennsylvania State University, Astrobiology Research Center, University Park, PA, United States
University of California, Los Angeles, United States
Volume Title: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(30), p.10583-10588. Publisher: National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC, United States. ISSN: 0027-8424
Note: In English. Supplemental information/data is available in the online version of this article. 39 refs.; illus., incl. 2 tables
Summary: The subseafloor marine biosphere may be one of the largest reservoirs of microbial biomass on Earth and has recently been the subject of debate in terms of the composition of its microbial inhabitants, particularly on sediments from the Peru Margin. A metagenomic analysis was made by using whole-genome amplification and pyrosequencing of sediments from Ocean Drilling Program Site 1229 on the Peru Margin to further explore the microbial diversity and overall community composition within this environment. A total of 61.9 Mb of genetic material was sequenced from sediments at horizons 1, 16, 32, and 50 m below the seafloor. These depths include sediments from both primarily sulfate-reducing methane-generating regions of the sediment column. Many genes of the annotated genes, including those encoding ribosomal proteins, corresponded to those from the Chloroflexi and Euryarchaeota. However, analysis of the 16S small-subunit ribosomal genes suggests that Crenarchaeota are the abundant microbial member. Quantitative PCR confirms that uncultivated Crenarchaeota are indeed a major microbial group in these subsurface samples. These findings show that the marine subsurface is a distinct microbial habitat and is different from environments studied by metagenomics, especially because of the predominance of uncultivated archaeal groups.
Year of Publication: 2008
Research Program: ODP Ocean Drilling Program
Key Words: 07 Marine Geology and Oceanography; Chloroflexi; Continental margin; Crenarchaeota; DNA; East Pacific; Equatorial Pacific; Euryarchaeota; Genes; Genome; Habitat; Leg 201; Marine environment; Marine sediments; Microorganisms; ODP Site 1229; Ocean Drilling Program; Pacific Ocean; Peru; Phylogeny; Sediments; South America; South Pacific; Southeast Pacific
Coordinates: S105900 S105900 W0775800 W0775800
Record ID: 2010092391
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