Ocean floors

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Armed with a catalog of hundreds of thousands DNA And RNA Virus species in the world’s oceans Scientists are now zeroing in on the viruses most likely to combat climate change by helping to trap carbon dioxide in seawater or similar techniques. Using, various viruses that can prevent methane from melting Arctic soil.

By combining genomic sequence data with artificial intelligence analysis, researchers have identified viruses living in the ocean and analyzed their genomes to determine whether they “Stolen” gene from other microbes or cells that act. in the sea. Mapping microbial metabolism genes, including genes for underwater carbon metabolism, revealed 340 known metabolic pathways in the world’s oceans. 128 of them were also found in the marine virus genome.

“I was surprised that the number was so high,” said Matthew Sullivan, professor of microbiology and director of the Center for Microbiome Science at Ohio State University.

After sifting through this huge trove of data through computational advances, the team has now revealed which viruses play a role in carbon metabolism and is using this information in newly developed community metabolic models to It is possible to predict how viruses are being used by the marine microbiome to make better carbon. Occupancy will appear.

“The modeling is about how viruses can turn on or off microbial activity in a system,” Sullivan said. “Community metabolic modeling is giving me the data point of dreams: which viruses are targeting the most important and that matters because it means they’re good levers going forward.”

Sullivan Presented the research Today at the annual meeting of American Association for the Advancement of Science In Denver

Sullivan was the virus coordinator for the Tara Ocean Consortium, a three-year global study of its effects. on the world’s oceans and the source of 35,000 water samples containing microbial bounty. His lab focuses on phages, viruses that infect bacteria, and their ability to be expanded into engineering frameworks to allow marine microbes to convert carbon into the heaviest organic form that the oceans can produce. will sink into the floor.

“Oceans absorb carbon, and that buffers us against climate change. CO2 absorbed as a gas, and converted to organic carbon by microbes,” Sullivan said. “What we’re seeing now is that viruses are the most important reaction in the metabolism of these microbial communities. Target the process. This means we can start investigating which viruses can be used to modify carbon at will.

“In other words, can we strengthen this huge ocean buffer to become a carbon sink to buy time against climate change, as it is being accelerated to release that carbon back into the atmosphere?”

In 2016, the TARA team determined that carbon sinks in the oceans were linked to the presence of viruses. It is thought that viruses help sink carbon when virus-infected carbon-processing cells fall to the ocean floor. The researchers developed AI-based analytics to identify thousands of viruses, some of which are “VIP” viruses, for culture in the laboratory and to serve as model systems. Geo Engineering

This new community metabolic modelling, developed by Tara Oceans Consortium Associate Professor Damien Avlard, helps them understand what unintended consequences such an approach might have. Sullivan’s lab is taking these marine lessons learned and applying them to recovery from spinal cord injury, improving outcomes for babies born to mothers with HIV, combating infection in burn wounds, and To do much more is using them to engineer the microbiome in the human environment for use by viruses.

“The conversation we’re having is, ‘How much of this is transferable?'” said Sullivan, who is also a professor of civil, environmental and geodetic engineering. “The overall goal is toward engineering the microbiome that we think is something useful.”

He also reports on early attempts to use phages as geoengineering tools in a completely different ecosystem: permafrost in northern Sweden, where microbes both alter the climate and decompose frozen soil. Also respond to climate change.

Virginia Rich, associate professor of microbiology at Ohio State, is co-director of the EMERGE Biology Integration Institute at Ohio State, which conducts microbiome science at the Swedish field site. Amir also co-led previous research that identified a series of single-celled organisms in thawing permafrost soils as a key producer of methane, a potent greenhouse gas.

Amir co-organized the AAAS session with Ruth Werner of the University of New Hampshire, who co-directs the EMERGE Institute, which is focused on better understanding how the microbiome affects permafrost thaw. and consequently respond to climate interactions.

Sullivan’s talk was titled “From Ecosystem Biology to Microbiome Management. and was presented in the session titled “Microbiome-Targeted Ecosystem Management: Small Players, Big Roles.”

More information:
Presentation Session: aaas.confex.com/aaas/2024/meet … pp.cgi/Session/32021

Reference: Examining viruses that could help ‘dial up’ ocean carbon (2024, Feb 17) https://phys.org/news/2024-02-viruses-dial-carbon 17 Feb 2024 Retrieved from -capture-sea. html

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