[Coral-List] Transcritpome evidence for Bleaching-Induced Outbreak of Viruses in Corals

Steve Palumbi spalumbi at stanford.edu
Fri Jan 29 14:27:18 EST 2016

Hi all, in reply to Becky’s paper seeing viruses, we have recently found very similar evidence from the transcriptomes of bleaching corals. In Rose et al. https://gbe.oxfordjournals.org/content/8/1/243.full <https://gbe.oxfordjournals.org/content/8/1/243.full> we find a module of hugely unregulated genes associated with retroviral function in a subset of corals exposed to high heat. Not all corals have this pattern, but the ones that do have a LOT of retroviral response.


Stephen Palumbi
Harold A. Miller Professor of Marine Science
Director, Hopkins Marine Station
microdocumentaries at http://microdocs.org

> On Jan 28, 2016, at 10:35 AM, Rebecca Vega Thurber <rvegathurber at gmail.com> wrote:
> Sorry for the re-post but here is the correct link to our paper paper.
> http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fmicb.2016.00127/abstract <http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fmicb.2016.00127/abstract>
> On Thu, Jan 28, 2016 at 9:10 AM, Rebecca Vega Thurber <
> rvegathurber at gmail.com <mailto:rvegathurber at gmail.com>> wrote:
>> Hello everyone,
>>  Please see our recent open access paper published in *Frontiers in
>> Microbiology* on viral infections of Acropora corals during a bleaching
>> event. On behalf of the authors I hope you find it interesting, and should
>> you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask. -Becky
>> http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fmicb.2016.00127/abstractAbstract
>> *Title:* Viral outbreak in corals associated with an in situ bleaching
>> event: atypical herpes-like viruses and a new megavirus infecting
>> *Symbiodinium*
>> *Abstract*
>> Previous studies of coral viruses have employed either microscopy or
>> metagenomics, but few have attempted to comprehensively link the presence
>> of a virus-like particle (VLP) to a genomic sequence. We conducted
>> transmission electron microscopy imaging and virome analysis in tandem to
>> characterize the most conspicuous viral types found within the dominant
>> Pacific reef-building coral genus *Acropora*. Collections for this study
>> inadvertently captured what we interpret as a natural outbreak of viral
>> infection driven by aerial exposure of the reef flat coincident with heavy
>> rainfall and concomitant mass bleaching. All experimental corals in this
>> study had high titers of viral particles. Three of the dominant VLPs
>> identified were observed in all tissue layers and budding out from the
>> epidermis, including viruses that were ~70 nm, ~120 nm, and ~150 nm in
>> diameter; these VLPs all contained electron dense cores. These
>> morphological traits are reminiscent of retroviruses, herpesviruses, and
>> nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses (NCLDVs), respectively. Some 300-500 nm
>> megavirus-like VLPs also were observed within and associated with
>> dinoflagellate algal endosymbiont (*Symbiodinium*) cells. Abundant
>> sequence similarities to a gammaretrovirus, herpesviruses, and members of
>> the NCLDVs, based on a virome generated from five *Acropora aspera*
>> colonies, corroborated these morphology-based identifications. Additionally
>> sequence similarities to two diagnostic genes, a MutS and (based on
>> re-annotation of sequences from another study) a DNA polymerase B gene,
>> most closely resembled *Pyramimonas orientalis* virus, demonstrating the
>> association of a cosmopolitan megavirus with *Symbiodinium*. We also
>> identified several other viral particles in host tissues, along with
>> sequences phylogenetically similar to circoviruses, phages, and filamentous
>> viruses. This study suggests that viral outbreaks may be a common but
>> previously undocumented component of natural bleaching events, particularly
>> following repeated episodes of multiple environmental stressors.
>> --
>> Dr. Rebecca Vega Thurber
>> Assistant Professor of Microbiology
>> Oregon State University
>> 454 Nash Hall
>> Corvallis OR  97331-3804, U.S.A
>> 541-737-1851 (office) 541-737-0496 (FAX)
>> rvegathurber at gmail.com;Rebecca.Vega-Thurber at oregonstate.edu
>> <Rebecca.Vega.Thurber at oregonstate.edu>
> -- 
> Dr. Rebecca Vega Thurber
> Assistant Professor of Microbiology
> Oregon State University
> 454 Nash Hall
> Corvallis OR  97331-3804, U.S.A
> 541-737-1851 (office) 541-737-0496 (FAX)
> rvegathurber at gmail.com <mailto:rvegathurber at gmail.com>;Rebecca.Vega-Thurber at oregonstate.edu <mailto:Rebecca.Vega-Thurber at oregonstate.edu>
> <Rebecca.Vega.Thurber at oregonstate.edu <mailto:Rebecca.Vega.Thurber at oregonstate.edu>>
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