SINGLE STRANDED DNA VIRUS COMMUNITIES OFF THE WASHINGTON COAST COMPOSED OF UNCULTURED VIRUSES AND MICROVIRUSES
Andrea Odell, Gabrielle Rocap, Michael Carlson.
1 School of Aquatics and Fisheries, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, 2School of Oceanography, University of Washington, Seattle, Seattle, WA.
Viruses are the most abundant microorganisms found in the ocean and are important in maintaining marine food webs. Viral diversity is immense. Within this diverse group of viruses are the single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) viruses, many of which infect marine eukaryotic organisms. Unfortunately, very little is known about the environmental distribution and diversity of these pathogens. To help understand the diversity and distribution of the ssDNA viruses, we constructed phylogenetic trees using the capsid and replication-associated genes for the ssDNA viruses. These phylogenetic trees were used to identify which viruses can be found in the marine environment. We looked at virus communities from 4 locations off the Washington coast. We hypothesized that the ssDNA virus communities would vary between these locations because of differing host communities. Ultimately, our results helped to understand the diversity of ssDNA viruses and how they change in the ocean.