© The Author(s), 2022. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License. The definitive version was published in Luo, E., Leu, A. O., Eppley, J. M., Karl, D. M., & DeLong, E. F. Diversity and origins of bacterial and archaeal viruses on sinking particles reaching the abyssal ocean. ISME Journal, 16, : 1627–1635, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41396-022-01202-1.
Sinking particles and particle-associated microbes influence global biogeochemistry through particulate matter export from the surface to the deep ocean. Despite ongoing studies of particle-associated microbes, viruses in these habitats remain largely unexplored. Whether, where, and which viruses might contribute to particle production and export remain open to investigation. In this study, we analyzed 857 virus population genomes associated with sinking particles collected over three years in sediment traps moored at 4000 m in the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre. Particle-associated viruses here were linked to cellular hosts through matches to bacterial and archaeal metagenome-assembled genome (MAG)-encoded prophages or CRISPR spacers, identifying novel viruses infecting presumptive deep-sea bacteria such as Colwellia, Moritella, and Shewanella. We also identified lytic viruses whose abundances correlated with particulate carbon flux and/or were exported from the photic to abyssal ocean, including cyanophages. Our data are consistent with some of the predicted outcomes of the viral shuttle hypothesis, and further suggest that viral lysis of both autotrophic and heterotrophic prokaryotes may play a role in carbon export. Our analyses revealed the diversity and origins of prevalent viruses found on deep-sea sinking particles and identified prospective viral groups for future investigation into processes that govern particle export in the open ocean.
This project is funded by grants from the Simons Foundation (#329108 to EFD and DMK, #721223 to EFD, and #721252 to DMK) and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation (GBMF3777 to EFD and GBMF3794 to DMK). Partial support for EL was provided by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (PGSD3-487490-2016).
Woods Hole Open Access Server