Rohwer, F. SIO,
Segall, A. San Diego State University,
Breitbart, M. SIO,
Steward, G. F. MBARI,
Azam, F. SIO,

Viruses are ubiquitous components of the marine environment frequently reaching concentrations of 10^7-10^8 viruses per ml of surface seawater. Observations of high bacteria abundances in seawater, as well as the observation that a high proportion of the bacteria are infected with phage, have led to the conclusion that the majority of observed viral particles are bacteriophage. Additionally, the decay rates of the viral particles are relatively rapid, suggesting that viral production must be high to maintain the observed standing stocks. Numerous attempts have been made to incorporate these observations and their implications (e.g., bacteria mortality) into the marine microbial food web. By necessity most of these studies have ignored the specificity of host/virus interactions. In fact the diversity of marine phage and viruses is essentially unknown. Addressing diversity is the first step toward answering questions such as: 1) How do specific phage effect community structure?, 2) What proportion of the observed phage are transducing particles?, 3) Are specific phage species stable members of the marine community?, and 4) How do phage evolve?. To address these questions, we have started a marine phage genomic sequencing project. The first genome sequenced was RoseophageSP14, a lytic phage of Roseobacter spp (most closely related to Roseobacter algicola). The sequence data was used to develop a semi-quantitative PCR protocol to detect RoseophageSP14 in seawater samples. Using this method we have isolated the same phage from Scripp's Pier eight years after it was originally isolated. Implications of this finding, as well as a complete analysis of RoseophageSP14's open reading frames (ORFs), will be presented.
Day: Tuesday, Feb. 2
Time: Poster
Location: Sweeney Center
Code: SS40TU0899S