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Citation: Jun Wang, Jian Xiao, Zheng Zhu, Siyuan Wang, Lei Zhang, Zhaojun Fan, Yali Deng, Zhihong Hu, Fang Peng, Shu Shen, Fei Deng. Diverse viromes in polar regions: A retrospective study of metagenomic data from Antarctic animal feces and Arctic frozen soil in 2012–2014 [J].VIROLOGICA SINICA, 2022, 37(6) : 883-893.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.virs.2022.08.006

Diverse viromes in polar regions: A retrospective study of metagenomic data from Antarctic animal feces and Arctic frozen soil in 2012–2014

  • Antarctica and the Arctic are the coldest places, containing a high diversity of microorganisms, including viruses, which are important components of polar ecosystems. However, owing to the difficulties in obtaining access to animal and environmental samples, the current knowledge of viromes in polar regions is still limited. To better understand polar viromes, this study performed a retrospective analysis using metagenomic sequencing data of animal feces from Antarctica and frozen soil from the Arctic collected during 2012–2014. The results reveal diverse communities of DNA and RNA viruses from at least 23 families from Antarctic animal feces and 16 families from Arctic soils. Although the viral communities from Antarctica and the Arctic show a large diversity, they have genetic similarities with known viruses from different ecosystems and organisms with similar viral proteins. Phylogenetic analysis of Microviridae, Parvoviridae, and Larvidaviridae was further performed, and complete genomic sequences of two novel circular replication-associated protein (rep)-encoding single-stranded (CRESS) DNA viruses closely related to Circoviridae were identified. These results reveal the high diversity, complexity, and novelty of viral communities from polar regions, and suggested the genetic similarity and functional correlations of viromes between the Antarctica and Arctic. Variations in viral families in Arctic soils, Arctic freshwater, and Antarctic soils are discussed. These findings improve our understanding of polar viromes and suggest the importance of performing follow-up in-depth investigations of animal and environmental samples from Antarctica and the Arctic, which would reveal the substantial role of these viruses in the global viral community.

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  • 10.1016j.virs.2022.08.006-ESM.zip
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    Diverse viromes in polar regions: A retrospective study of metagenomic data from Antarctic animal feces and Arctic frozen soil in 2012–2014

      Corresponding author: Fang Peng, fangpeng2@aliyun.com
      Corresponding author: Shu Shen, shenshu@wh.iov.cn
      Corresponding author: Fei Deng, df@wh.iov.cn
    • a State Key Laboratory of Virology and National Virus Resource Center, Wuhan Institute of Virology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan 430071, China;
    • b China Center for Type Culture Collection (CCTCC), College of Life Sciences, Wuhan University, Wuhan, 430072, China;
    • c Xinjiang Key Laboratory of Biological Resources and Genetic Engineering, College of Life Science and Technology, Xinjiang University, Urumqi, 830046, China

    Abstract: Antarctica and the Arctic are the coldest places, containing a high diversity of microorganisms, including viruses, which are important components of polar ecosystems. However, owing to the difficulties in obtaining access to animal and environmental samples, the current knowledge of viromes in polar regions is still limited. To better understand polar viromes, this study performed a retrospective analysis using metagenomic sequencing data of animal feces from Antarctica and frozen soil from the Arctic collected during 2012–2014. The results reveal diverse communities of DNA and RNA viruses from at least 23 families from Antarctic animal feces and 16 families from Arctic soils. Although the viral communities from Antarctica and the Arctic show a large diversity, they have genetic similarities with known viruses from different ecosystems and organisms with similar viral proteins. Phylogenetic analysis of Microviridae, Parvoviridae, and Larvidaviridae was further performed, and complete genomic sequences of two novel circular replication-associated protein (rep)-encoding single-stranded (CRESS) DNA viruses closely related to Circoviridae were identified. These results reveal the high diversity, complexity, and novelty of viral communities from polar regions, and suggested the genetic similarity and functional correlations of viromes between the Antarctica and Arctic. Variations in viral families in Arctic soils, Arctic freshwater, and Antarctic soils are discussed. These findings improve our understanding of polar viromes and suggest the importance of performing follow-up in-depth investigations of animal and environmental samples from Antarctica and the Arctic, which would reveal the substantial role of these viruses in the global viral community.

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