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Trends in Microbiology
2014

Diversity of diversity: conceptual and methodological differences in biodiversity estimates of eukaryotic microbes as compared to bacteria

Jean-David Grattepanche, Luciana F. Santoferrara, George B. McManus, Laura A. Katz

Department of Biological Sciences, Smith College, Northampton, MA 01063, USA.

Abstract

Recent advances such as high-throughput sequencing (HTS) have changed conceptions about the magnitude of diversity on Earth. This is especially true for microbial lineages, which have seen the discovery of great numbers of rare forms in places such as the human gut as well as diverse environments (e.g., freshwater, marine, and soil). Given the differences in perceptions of diversity for bacterial and eukaryotic microbes, including divergent species concepts, HTS tools used to eliminate errors and population-level variation in bacteria may not be appropriate for microbial eukaryotes and may eliminate valid species from the data. We discuss here how the nature of biodiversity varies among microbial groups and the extent to which HTS tools designed for bacteria are useful for eukaryotes.

Keywords: species concepts; high-throughput sequencing; microbial eukaryotes


 
 
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