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Multiple nutrient stresses at intersecting Pacific Ocean biomes detected by protein biomarkers.

Science (New York, N.Y.)

Stress, Physiological, Biological Markers, microbiology, Seawater, methods, Proteomics, metabolism, Proteins, Prochlorococcus, Phosphorus, Pacific Ocean, Nitrogen, Iron, Cobalt

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      Abstract

      Marine primary productivity is strongly influenced by the scarcity of required nutrients, yet our understanding of these nutrient limitations is informed by experimental observations with sparse geographical coverage and methodological limitations. We developed a quantitative proteomic method to directly assess nutrient stress in high-light ecotypes of the abundant cyanobacterium Prochlorococcus across a meridional transect in the central Pacific Ocean. Multiple peptide biomarkers detected widespread and overlapping regions of nutritional stress for nitrogen and phosphorus in the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre and iron in the equatorial Pacific. Quantitative protein analyses demonstrated simultaneous stress for these nutrients at biome interfaces. This application of proteomic biomarkers to diagnose ocean metabolism demonstrated Prochlorococcus actively and simultaneously deploying multiple biochemical strategies for low-nutrient conditions in the oceans. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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      Most cited references 57

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      Community genomics among stratified microbial assemblages in the ocean's interior.

      Microbial life predominates in the ocean, yet little is known about its genomic variability, especially along the depth continuum. We report here genomic analyses of planktonic microbial communities in the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre, from the ocean's surface to near-sea floor depths. Sequence variation in microbial community genes reflected vertical zonation of taxonomic groups, functional gene repertoires, and metabolic potential. The distributional patterns of microbial genes suggested depth-variable community trends in carbon and energy metabolism, attachment and motility, gene mobility, and host-viral interactions. Comparative genomic analyses of stratified microbial communities have the potential to provide significant insight into higher-order community organization and dynamics.
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        Processes and patterns of oceanic nutrient limitation

         C Moore,  M. Mills,  K. Arrigo (2013)
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          Genome divergence in two Prochlorococcus ecotypes reflects oceanic niche differentiation.

          The marine unicellular cyanobacterium Prochlorococcus is the smallest-known oxygen-evolving autotroph. It numerically dominates the phytoplankton in the tropical and subtropical oceans, and is responsible for a significant fraction of global photosynthesis. Here we compare the genomes of two Prochlorococcus strains that span the largest evolutionary distance within the Prochlorococcus lineage and that have different minimum, maximum and optimal light intensities for growth. The high-light-adapted ecotype has the smallest genome (1,657,990 base pairs, 1,716 genes) of any known oxygenic phototroph, whereas the genome of its low-light-adapted counterpart is significantly larger, at 2,410,873 base pairs (2,275 genes). The comparative architectures of these two strains reveal dynamic genomes that are constantly changing in response to myriad selection pressures. Although the two strains have 1,350 genes in common, a significant number are not shared, and these have been differentially retained from the common ancestor, or acquired through duplication or lateral transfer. Some of these genes have obvious roles in determining the relative fitness of the ecotypes in response to key environmental variables, and hence in regulating their distribution and abundance in the oceans.
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            Author and article information

            Journal
            10.1126/science.1256450
            25190794

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