Distribution of Ecotypes


QPCR Isolated strains of the genus Prochlorococcus can be divided into two main groups based on their pigment content and light dependent physiology. These two groups correspond to phylogenetic groupings as defined by the16S rRNA, and can be further subdivided genetically into two high light adaptedecotypes and four low light adapted ecotypes.   We are using real-timequantitative PCR to determine the abundances of all 6 ecotypes of Prochlorococcus in natural samples.  By examining the distributions of the differentecotypes over a variety of seasonal and spatial scales we hope to understandthe environmental factors that have driven the genetic differentiation withinthis genus.  Both Nathan Ahlgren and Cedar McKay are involved in this project.