Title

Ocean biogeochemistry modeled with emergent trait-based genomics

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

12-1-2017

Abstract

Marine ecosystem models have advanced to incorporate metabolic pathways discovered with genomic sequencing, but direct comparisons between models and “omics” data are lacking. We developed a model that directly simulates metagenomes and metatranscriptomes for comparison with observations. Model microbes were randomly assigned genes for specialized functions, and communities of 68 species were simulated in the Atlantic Ocean. Unfit organisms were replaced, and the model self-organized to develop community genomes and transcriptomes. Emergent communities from simulations that were initialized with different cohorts of randomly generated microbes all produced realistic vertical and horizontal ocean nutrient, genome, and transcriptome gradients. Thus, the library of gene functions available to the community, rather than the distribution of functions among specific organisms, drove community assembly and biogeochemical gradients in the model ocean.

Publication Title

Science

Volume

358

Issue

6367

First Page

1149

Last Page

1154

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

10.1126/science.aan5712

PubMed ID

29191900

ISSN

00368075

E-ISSN

10959203

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