Niche partitioning among Prochlorococcus ecotypes along ocean-scale environmental gradients.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Prochlorococcus is the numerically dominant phytoplankter in the oligotrophic oceans, accounting for up to half of the photosynthetic biomass and production in some regions. Here, we describe how the abundance of six known ecotypes, which have small subunit ribosomal RNA sequences that differ by less than 3%, changed along local and basin-wide environmental gradients in the Atlantic Ocean. Temperature was significantly correlated with shifts in ecotype abundance, and laboratory experiments confirmed different temperature optima and tolerance ranges for cultured strains. Light, nutrients, and competitor abundances also appeared to play a role in shaping different distributions.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Johnson, ZI; Zinser, ER; Coe, A; McNulty, NP; Woodward, EMS; Chisholm, SW

Published Date

  • March 2006

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 311 / 5768

Start / End Page

  • 1737 - 1740

PubMed ID

  • 16556835

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1095-9203

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0036-8075

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1126/science.1118052


  • eng