Image_2_High Diversity of Myocyanophage in Various Aquatic Environments Revealed by High-Throughput Sequencing of Major Capsid Protein Gene With a New Set of Primers.PDF

Myocyanophages, a group of viruses infecting cyanobacteria, are abundant and play important roles in elemental cycling. Here we investigated the particle-associated viral communities retained on 0.2 μm filters and in sediment samples (representing ancient cyanophage communities) from four ocean and three lake locations, using high-throughput sequencing and a newly designed primer pair targeting a gene fragment (∼145-bp in length) encoding the cyanophage gp23 major capsid protein (MCP). Diverse viral communities were detected in all samples. The fragments of 142-, 145-, and 148-bp in length were most abundant in the amplicons, and most sequences (>92%) belonged to cyanophages. Additionally, different sequencing depths resulted in different diversity estimates of the viral community. Operational taxonomic units obtained from deep sequencing of the MCP gene covered the majority of those obtained from shallow sequencing, suggesting that deep sequencing exhibited a more complete picture of cyanophage community than shallow sequencing. Our results also revealed a wide geographic distribution of marine myocyanophages, i.e., higher dissimilarities of the myocyanophage communities corresponded with the larger distances between the sampling sites. Collectively, this study suggests that the newly designed primer pair can be effectively used to study the community and diversity of myocyanophage from different environments, and the high-throughput sequencing represents a good method to understand viral diversity.