Regional variation in lytic and lysogenic viral infection in the Southern Ocean and its contribution to biogeochemical cycling

Evans, C.; Brussaard, C.P.D.. 2012 Regional variation in lytic and lysogenic viral infection in the Southern Ocean and its contribution to biogeochemical cycling. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 78 (18). 6741-6748. 10.1128/AEM.01388-12

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Lytic and lysogenic viral infection was investigated throughout the Southern Ocean at sites spanning the sub-Antarctic zone, the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, and an Antarctic continental sea. Higher lytic virus activity was recorded in the more productive sub-Antarctic zone than in the iron-limited waters of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current during two transects. Reduced lytic viral activity in the Antarctic Circumpolar Current was combined with a shift toward lysogenic infection, probably resulting from the lower concentration of potential prokaryotic hosts. Superimposed on this variation, lytic viral production was lower in a transect completed in the Drake Passage in autumn (1.8 × 108 to 1.5 × 109 liter−1 day−1) than over the Greenwich Meridian during summer (5.1 × 108 to 2.0 × 1010 cells liter−1 day−1), indicating that viral activity is linked to the overall seasonal fluctuations in biotic activity. Interestingly, while prokaryotic abundance was lowest in the coastal Weddell Sea, levels of bacterial and lytic viral production (4.3 × 108 to 1.7 × 1010 cells liter−1 day−1) in this area were similar to those of the other zones. This may explain the weak relationship between the distribution of prokaryotes and chlorophyll in the Weddell Sea, as a high turnover of prokaryotic biomass may have been stimulated by the availability of substrates in the form of viral lysate. With estimated carbon and iron releases of 0.02 to 7.5 μg liter−1 day−1 and 1.5 to 175.7 pg liter−1 day−1, respectively, viral activity in the Southern Ocean is shown to be a major contributor to satisfying the elemental requirements of microbes, notably prokaryotes in the Weddell Sea and phytoplankton in the sub-Antarctic zone.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1128/AEM.01388-12
ISSN: 0099-2240
Date made live: 23 Mar 2017 14:05 +0 (UTC)

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