Diversity and biogeography of picoplankton communities from the Straits of Malacca to the South China Sea

Zhao-Yu Jiang, Fu-Lin Sun

Paper category: Original research paper
Corresponding author: Zhao-Yu Jiang (jiangzhaoyu@lyu.edu.cn)
DOI: 10.1515/ohs-2020-0003
Received: 25/04/2019
Accepted: 26/08/2019
Full text: here

Citation (APA style): Jiang, Z. & Sun, F. (2020). Diversity and biogeography of picoplankton communities from the Straits of Malacca to the South China Sea. Oceanological and Hydrobiological Studies, 49(1), pp. 23-33. Retrieved 10 Mar. 2020, from doi:10.1515/ohs-2020-0003


Marine picoplankton, including prokaryotic and eukaryotic picoplankton, drive many biogeochemical processes, such as carbon, nitrogen and sulfur cycles, making them crucial to the marine ecosystem. Despite the fact that picoplankton is prevalent, its diversity and spatial distribution from the Straits of Malacca (SM) to the South China Sea (SCS) remain poorly investigated. This work explores the phylogenetic diversity and community structure of picoplankton in relation to environmental factors from the SM to the SCS. To this end, the Illumina MiSeq sequencing technique was applied to 16S and 18S rRNA genes. The results showed significant differences in the dynamics of picoplankton between the open sea and the strait region. Proteobacteria and Cyanobacteria constituted a larger part of the prokaryotic group. Within Cyanobacteria, the abundance of Prochlorococcus in the open sea was significantly higher than that of Synechococcus, while the opposite trend was observed in the strait. Dinoflagellata, Cnidaria, Retaria, Tunicata, and Arthropoda dominated among the eukaryotic taxa. High-throughput sequencing data indicated that salinity, temperature and NO<sup>2</sup>-N were the key factors determining the prokaryotic community structure, while temperature and dissolved oxygen determined the eukaryotic community structure in the studied region. The network analysis demonstrated that the cooperation and competition were also important factors affecting the picoplankton community.


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