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Title: Uncultivated DPANN archaea are ubiquitous inhabitants of global oxygen-deficient zones with diverse metabolic potential
ABSTRACT <p>Archaea belonging to the DPANN (Diapherotrites, Parvarchaeota, Aenigmarchaeota, Nanoarchaeota, and Nanohaloarchaeota) superphylum have been found in an expanding number of environments and perform a variety of biogeochemical roles, including contributing to carbon, sulfur, and nitrogen cycling. Generally characterized by ultrasmall cell sizes and reduced genomes, DPANN archaea may form mutualistic, commensal, or parasitic interactions with various archaeal and bacterial hosts, influencing the ecology and functioning of microbial communities. While DPANN archaea reportedly comprise a sizeable fraction of the archaeal community within marine oxygen-deficient zone (ODZ) water columns, little is known about their metabolic capabilities in these ecosystems. We report 33 novel metagenome-assembled genomes (MAGs) belonging to the DPANN phyla Nanoarchaeota, Pacearchaeota, Woesearchaeota, Undinarchaeota, Iainarchaeota, and SpSt-1190 from pelagic ODZs in the Eastern Tropical North Pacific and the Arabian Sea. We find these archaea to be permanent, stable residents of all three major ODZs only within anoxic depths, comprising up to 1% of the total microbial community and up to 25%–50% of archaea as estimated from read mapping to MAGs. ODZ DPANN appear to be capable of diverse metabolic functions, including fermentation, organic carbon scavenging, and the cycling of sulfur, hydrogen, and methane. Within a majority of ODZ DPANN, we identify a gene homologous to nitrous oxide reductase. Modeling analyses indicate the feasibility of a nitrous oxide reduction metabolism for host-attached symbionts, and the small genome sizes and reduced metabolic capabilities of most DPANN MAGs suggest host-associated lifestyles within ODZs.</p></sec> <sec><title>IMPORTANCE

Archaea from the DPANN (Diapherotrites, Parvarchaeota, Aenigmarchaeota, Nanoarchaeota, and Nanohaloarchaeota) superphylum have diverse metabolic capabilities and participate in multiple biogeochemical cycles. While metagenomics and enrichments have revealed that many DPANN are characterized by ultrasmall genomes, few biosynthetic genes, and episymbiotic lifestyles, much remains unknown about their biology. We report 33 new DPANN metagenome-assembled genomes originating from the three global marine oxygen-deficient zones (ODZs), the first from these regions. We survey DPANN abundance and distribution within the ODZ water column, investigate their biosynthetic capabilities, and report potential roles in the cycling of organic carbon, methane, and nitrogen. We test the hypothesis that nitrous oxide reductases found within several ODZ DPANN genomes may enable ultrasmall episymbionts to serve as nitrous oxide consumers when attached to a host nitrous oxide producer. Our results indicate DPANN archaea as ubiquitous residents within the anoxic core of ODZs with the potential to produce or consume key compounds.

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Author(s) / Creator(s):
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Giovannoni, Stephen J.
Publisher / Repository:
American Society for Microbiology
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Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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