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Variations in abundance, genome size, morphology, and functional role of the virioplankton in lakes Annecy and Bourget over a 1-year period

Abstract : We sampled the surface waters (2-50 m) of two deep peri-alpine lakes over a 1-year period in order to examine (1) the abundance, vertical distribution, genome size, and morphology structures of the virioplankton; (2) the virus-mediated bacterial mortality; and (3) the specific genome size range of double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) phytoplankton viruses. Virus-like particle (VLP) concentrations varied between 4.16 x 10(7) (January) and 2.08 x 10(8) part mL(-1) (May) in Lake Bourget and between 2.7 x 10(7) (June) and 8.39 x 10(7) part mL(-1) (November) in Lake Annecy. Our flow cytometry analysis revealed at least three viral groups (referred to as virus-like particles 1, 2, and 3) that exhibited distinctive dynamics suggestive of different host types. Phage-induced bacterial mortality varied between 6.1 % (June) and 33.2 % (October) in Lake Bourget and between 7.4 % (June) and 52.6 % (November) in Lake Annecy, suggesting that viral lysis may be a key cause of mortality of the bacterioplankton. Virioplankton genome size ranged from 27 to 486 kb in Lake Bourget, while it reached 620 kb in Lake Annecy for which larger genome sizes were recorded. Our analysis of pulsed field gel electrophoresis bands using different PCR primers targeting both cyanophages and algal viruses showed that (1) dsDNA viruses infecting phytoplankton may range from 65 to 486 kb, and (2) both cyanophage and algal "diversity" were higher in Lake Annecy. Lakes Annecy and Bourget also differed regarding the proportions of both viral families (with the dominance of myoviruses vs. podoviruses) and infected bacterial morphotypes (short rods vs. elongated rods), in each of these lakes, respectively. Overall, our results reveal that (1) viruses displayed distinct temporal and vertical distribution, dynamics, community structure in terms of genome size and morphology, and viral activity in the two lakes; (2) the Myoviridae seemed to be the main cause of bacterial mortality in both lakes and this group seemed to be related to VLP2; and (3) phytoplankton viruses may have a broader range of genome size than previously thought. This study adds to growing evidence that viruses are diverse and play a significant role in freshwater microbial dynamics and more globally lake functioning. It highlights the importance of further considering this biological compartment for a better understanding of plankton ecology in peri-alpine lakes.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, May 27, 2020 - 11:49:22 AM
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Xu Zhong, Pradeep Ram Angia Siram, Jonathan Colombet, Stéphan Jacquet. Variations in abundance, genome size, morphology, and functional role of the virioplankton in lakes Annecy and Bourget over a 1-year period. Microbial Ecology, Springer Verlag, 2014, 67 (1), pp.66-82. ⟨10.1007/s00248-013-0320-2⟩. ⟨hal-02632925⟩



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