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Are phytoplankton population density maxima predicable through analysis of host and viral genomic DNA content?
Brown, C.M; Lawrence, J.E.; Campbell, D.A. (2006). Are phytoplankton population density maxima predicable through analysis of host and viral genomic DNA content? J. Mar. Biol. Ass. U.K. 86(3): 491-498
In: Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. Cambridge University Press/Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom: Cambridge. ISSN 0025-3154, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Abundance; Genomes; Phytoplankton; Population density; Viral diseases; Viruses; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Brown, C.M
  • Lawrence, J.E.
  • Campbell, D.A.

Abstract
    Phytoplankton:virus interactions are important factors in aquatic nutrient cycling and community succession. The number of viral progeny resulting from an infection of a cell critically influences the propagation of infection and concomitantly the dynamics of phytoplankton populations. Host nucleotide content may be the resource limiting viral particle assembly. Evidence is presented for a strong linear correlation between measured viral burst sizes and viral burst sizes predicted from the host DNA content divided by the viral genome size, across a diversity of phytoplankton:viral pairs. An analysis of genome sizes therefore supports predictions of taxon-specific phytoplankton population density thresholds beyond which viral proliferation can trim populations or terminate phytoplankton blooms. Corollaries are presented showing that host:virus interactions may place evolutionary pressure towards genome reduction of both phytoplankton hosts and their viruses.

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