Virioplankton: Viruses in Aquatic Ecosystems

  title={Virioplankton: Viruses in Aquatic Ecosystems},
  author={K. Eric Wommack and Rita R. Colwell},
  journal={Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews},
  pages={69 - 114}
The discovery that viruses may be the most abundant organisms in natural waters, surpassing the number of bacteria by an order of magnitude, has inspired a resurgence of interest in viruses in the aquatic environment. [] Key Result The new methods have yielded data showing that viral infection can have a significant impact on bacteria and unicellular algae populations and supporting the hypothesis that viruses play a significant role in microbial food webs. Besides predation limiting bacteria and…

Virus et prophages dans les écosystèmes aquatiques

In this review, available data on the structure and functional imprints (bacteriolysis, lysogeny, gene transfers, regulation of prokaryotic diversity) of natural viruses in the context of food webs in aquatic microbial ecology, and the related biogeochemical cycles, are summarized.

[Molecular ecology of microalgal viruses].

It is elucidating that viral infection is one of the most important factors determining the dynamics and termination of algal blooms by means of field survey and molecular experiments and demonstrated that the interrelationship between viruses and their hosts are highly complicated, and might be determined by the molecular-structural difference of viral capsids among distinct virus ecotypes.

Freshwater and marine virioplankton: a brief overview of commonalities and differences

A survey of published freshwater studies demonstrates that virioplankton recycle important quantities of growth-limiting nutrients from hosts via generation of dead particulate and dissolved organic matter during cell lysis, and suggests that both the chemical speciation and concentration of these organic compounds and nutrients may have important influences on the microbial community.

Environmental bacteriophages: viruses of microbes in aquatic ecosystems

The present chapter sought to review the literature on the diversity and functional roles of viruses of microbes in environmental microbiology, focusing primarily on prokaryotic viruses (i.e., phages) in aquatic ecosystems, which form the bulk of the authors' knowledge in modern environmental viral ecology.

Virus Interactions in the Aquatic World

During the past 30 years, a vast number of articles have been published on the importance – in terms of abundance, diversity and functional roles – of viruses inhabiting the aquatic world (either

Ecology of prokaryotic viruses.

  • M. Weinbauer
  • Biology, Environmental Science
    FEMS microbiology reviews
  • 2004

Virioplankton and microbial communities in aquatic systems: a seasonal study in two lakes of differing trophy

It is speculated that the weaker correlation between bacteria and viruses in Lake Aydat than in Lake Pavin, as well as the higher VBQ in the former, is a consequence of the increasing relative abundance of non-bacteriophage VLPs along the trophic gradient of aquatic systems.

Phage puppet masters of the marine microbial realm

The ‘royal family model’ is proposed as a hypothesis to describe successional patterns of bacteria and phages over time in marine systems, where despite high richness and significant seasonal differences, only a small number of phages appear to continually dominate a given marine ecosystem.

The Role of Lysogeny in the Microbial Ecology of Lake Matoaka

The results of the study indicate that lysogeny is more prevalent in March, when nutrient concentrations are lower as a result of curly pondweed growth, and mitomycin C, ultraviolet radiation, and herbicide were all shown to induce phage production from lysogenic cells, with the herbicide inducing the greatest number of prophages in environmental samples.

Ecology of viruses in rice fields.

The high frequency of phage-infected bacterial cells indicated that the bacterial mortality from phage lysis could be significant enough to redirect the microbial food web and change the bacterial communities.



Significance of bacteriophages for controlling bacterioplankton growth in a mesotrophic lake

The cyclic dynamics between bacteria and phages and the varying size structure of the intracellular mature phage particles suggested that phage infection was important in structuring the bacterial host assemblage during the study period.

Population Dynamics of Chesapeake Bay Virioplankton: Total-Community Analysis by Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis

It is concluded that, based on the dynamic nature of the Chesapeake Bay virioplankton community structure, the clonal diversity of bacterio- and phytoplankon host communities is an important component of the virus community.

Resistance to Co-Occurring Phages Enables Marine Synechococcus Communities To Coexist with Cyanophages Abundant in Seawater

Evidence is presented in support of the hypothesis that lytic phages have a negligible effect in regulating the densities of marine Synechococcus populations and that these viruses are maintained by scavenging on the relatively rare sensitive cells in these communities.

Viral mortality of marine bacteria and cyanobacteria

High viral abundance in the ocean but also counts of bacteria and cyanobacteria in the final irreversible stage of lytic infection demonstrate the existence of a significant new pathway of carbon and nitrogen cycling in marine food webs and have further implications for gene transfer between marine organisms.

Viruses as Partners in Spring Bloom Microbial Trophodynamics

The dynamic behavior observed for the virus population rules out the possibility that it is dominated by inactive species, and the viruses are suggested to be active members of the microbial food web as agents causing lysis in parts of the bacterial population, diverting part of theacterial production from the predatory food chain.

Seasonal and Diel Abundance of Viruses and Occurrence of Lysogeny/Bacteriocinogeny in the Marine Environment

The results indicated that the viral population in Tampa Bay had a strong seasonal pattern with the highest concentrations in the summer and lowest in the winter, and dissolved DNA concentrations displayed diel rhythmicity, suggesting that viruses were not the main source of dissolved DNA.

Production and decay of viruses in aquatic environments

It is found that phages may be a major cause of bacterial mortality in aquatic ecosystems and may have a significant impact on the carbon and nutrient flow in aquatic food webs.

Hybridization Analysis of Chesapeake Bay Virioplankton

Overall, changes in abundances of specific viruses within the virioplankton were episodic, supporting the hypothesis that viral infection influences, if not controls, clonal diversity within heterotrophic bacteria and phytoplankon communities.

Infection of phytoplankton by viruses and reduction of primary productivity

It is demonstrated that viral pathogens infect a variety of important marine primary producers, including diatoms, cryptophytes, prasinophytes and chroococcoid cyanobacteria, indicating that infection by viruses could be a factor regulating phytoplankton community structure and primary productivity in the oceans.

Native marine bacteriophages

The cultured phages were generally much larger than the majority of viruses observed by direct transmission electron microscopy of seawater samples, indicating that culturing methods are not providing unbiased samples of environmental viruses.