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Re-examination of the relationship between marine virus and microbial cell abundances
Wigington, C.H.; Sonderegger, D.; Brussaard, C.P.D.; Buchan, A.; Finke, J.F.; Fuhrman, J.A.; Lennon, J.T.; Middelboe, M.; Suttle, C.A.; Stock, C.; Wilson, W.H.; Wommack, K.E.; Wilhelm, S.W.; Weitz, J.S. (2016). Re-examination of the relationship between marine virus and microbial cell abundances. Nature Microbiology 1: 15024.
In: Nature Microbiology. Springer Nature: London. ISSN 2058-5276, meer
Peer reviewed article  

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Auteurs  Top 
  • Wigington, C.H.
  • Sonderegger, D.
  • Brussaard, C.P.D., meer
  • Buchan, A.
  • Finke, J.F.
  • Fuhrman, J.A.
  • Lennon, J.T.
  • Middelboe, M., meer
  • Suttle, C.A.
  • Stock, C.
  • Wilson, W.H.
  • Wommack, K.E.
  • Wilhelm, S.W.
  • Weitz, J.S.

    Marine viruses are critical drivers of ocean biogeochemistry, and their abundances vary spatiotemporally in the globaloceans, with upper estimates exceeding 108 per ml. Over many years, a consensus has emerged that virus abundances aretypically tenfold higher than microbial cell abundances. However, the true explanatory power of a linear relationship andits robustness across diverse ocean environments is unclear. Here, we compile 5,671 microbial cell and virus abundanceestimates from 25 distinct marine surveys and find substantial variation in the virus-to-microbial cell ratio, in which a 10:1model has either limited or no explanatory power. Instead, virus abundances are better described as nonlinear, power-lawfunctions of microbial cell abundances. The fitted scaling exponents are typically less than 1, implying that the virus-tomicrobialcell ratio decreases with microbial cell density, rather than remaining fixed. The observed scaling also impliesthat viral effect sizes derived from ‘representative’ abundances require substantial refinement to be extrapolated toregional or global scales.

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