Eukaryotic plankton diversity in the sunlit ocean

Marine plankton support global biological and geochemical processes. Surveys of their biodiversity have hitherto been geographically restricted and have not accounted for the full range of plankton size. We assessed eukaryotic diversity from 334 size-fractionated photic-zone plankton communities collected across tropical and temperate oceans during the circumglobal Tara Oceans expedition. We analyzed 18S ribosomal DNA sequences across the intermediate plankton-size spectrum from the smallest unicellular eukaryotes (protists, > 0.8 micrometers) to small animals of a few millimeters. Eukaryotic ribosomal diversity saturated at similar to 150,000 operational taxonomic units, about one-third of which could not be assigned to known eukaryotic groups. Diversity emerged at all taxonomic levels, both within the groups comprising the similar to 11,200 cataloged morphospecies of eukaryotic plankton and among twice as many other deep-branching lineages of unappreciated importance in plankton ecology studies. Most eukaryotic plankton biodiversity belonged to heterotrophic protistan groups, particularly those known to be parasites or symbiotic hosts.

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de Vargas Colomban, Audic Stephane, Henry Nicolas, Decelle Johan, Mahe Frederic, Logares Ramiro, Lara Enrique, Berney Cedric, Le Bescot Noan, Probert Ian, Carmichael Margaux, Poulain Julie, Romac Sarah, Colin Sebastien, Aury Jean-Marc, Bittner Lucie, Chaffron Samuel, Dunthorn Micah, Engelen Stefan, Flegontova Olga, Guidi Lionel, Horak Ales, Jaillon Olivier, Lima-Mendez Gipsi, Lukes Julius, Malviya Shruti, Morard Raphael, Mulot Matthieu, Scalco Eleonora, Siano Raffaele, Vincent Flora, Zingone Adriana, Dimier Celine, Picheral Marc, Searson Sarah, Kandels-Lewis Stefanie, Acinas Silvia G., Bork Peer, Bowler Chris, Gorsky Gabriel, Grimsley Nigel, Hingamp Pascal, Iudicone Daniele, Not Fabrice, Ogata Hiroyuki, Pesant Stephane, Raes Jeroen, Sieracki Michael E., Speich Sabrina, Stemmann Lars, Sunagawa Shinichi, Weissenbach Jean, Wincker Patrick, Karsenti Eric (2015). Eukaryotic plankton diversity in the sunlit ocean. Science. 348 (6237). 1-12.,

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