The Brazos-Trinity Basin on the slope of the Gulf of Mexico passive margin was drilled during Integrated Ocean Drilling Progam Expedition 308. The buried anaerobic sediments of this basin are largely organic-poor and have few microbial inhabitants compared with the organic-rich sediments with high cell counts from the Peru Margin that were drilled during Ocean Drilling Program Leg 201. Nucleic acids were extracted from Brazos-Trinity Basin sediments and were subjected to whole-genome amplification and pyrosequencing. A comparison of the Brazos-Trinity Basin metagenome, consisting of 105 Mbp, and the existing Peru Margin metagenome revealed trends linking gene content, phylogenetic content, geological location and geochemical regime. The major microbial groups (Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, Euryarchaeota and Chloroflexi) occur consistently throughout all samples, yet their shifting abundances allow for discrimination between samples. The cluster of orthologous groups category abundances for some classes of genes are correlated with geochemical factors, such as the level of ammonia. Here we describe the sediment metagenome from the oligotrophic Brazos-Trinity Basin (Site 1320) and show similarities and differences with the dataset from the Pacific Peru Margin (Site 1229) and other pyrosequenced datasets. The microbial community found at Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Site 1320 likely represents the subsurface microbial inhabitants of turbiditic slopes that lack substantial upwelling.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics