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      Protist Interactions and Seasonal Dynamics in the Coast of Yantai, Northern Yellow Sea of China as Revealed by Metabarcoding

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          Facilitated by the high-throughput sequencing (HTS) technique, the importance of protists to aquatic systems has been widely acknowledged in the last decade. However, information of protistan biotic interactions and seasonal dynamics is much less known in the coast ecosystem with intensive anthropic disturbance. In this study, year-round changes of protist community composition and diversity in the coastal water of Yantai, a city along the northern Yellow Sea in China, were investigated using HTS for the V4 region of 18S rDNA. The interactions among protist groups were also analyzed using the co-occurrence network. Data analyses showed that Alveolata, Chlorophyta, and Stramenopiles are the most dominant phytoplanktonic protists in the investigated coastal area. The community composition displayed strong seasonal variation. The abundant families Dino-Group-I-Clade-1 and Ulotrichales_ X had higher proportions in spring and summer, while Bathycoccaceae exhibited higher ratios in autumn and winter. Alpha diversities (Shannon and Simpson) were the highest in autumn and the lowest in spring (ANOVA test, P < 0.05). Nutrients (SiO 4 2-, PO 4 3-), total organic carbon (TOC), and pH seemed to drive the variation of alpha diversity, while temperature, PO 4 3- and TON were the most significant factors influencing the whole protist community. Co-variance network analyses reveal frequent co-occurrence events among ciliates, chlorophytes and dinoflagellate, suggesting biotic interactions have been induced by predation, parasitism and mixotrophy.

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          Author and article information

          Journal of Ocean University of China
          Science Press and Springer (China )
          10 July 2020
          01 August 2020
          : 19
          : 4
          : 961-974
          1School of Ocean, Yantai University, Yantai 264003, China
          2Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes and Ecological Remediation, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yantai 264003, China
          3Center for Ocean Mega-Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao 266071, China
          Author notes
          *Corresponding author: ZHANG Qianqian, E-mail: qqzhang@ ; JI Daode, E-mail: daodeji@
          Copyright © Ocean University of China, Science Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2020.

          The copyright to this article, including any graphic elements therein (e.g. illustrations, charts, moving images), is hereby assigned for good and valuable consideration to the editorial office of Journal of Ocean University of China, Science Press and Springer effective if and when the article is accepted for publication and to the extent assignable if assignability is restricted for by applicable law or regulations (e.g. for U.S. government or crown employees).

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