|Title||Phylogenetic placement of Cibicidoides wuellerstorfi (Schwager, 1866) from methane seeps and non-seep habitats on the Pacific margin|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2015|
|Authors||Burkett A.M, Rathburn A.E, Perez M.E, Levin L.A, Cha H., Rouse GW|
|Type of Article||Article|
|Keywords||costa-rica; deep-water; global distribution; hydrate ridge; molecular phylogeny; monterey bay; sea benthic foraminifera; sediments; sequences; stable isotopic composition; subunit rdna|
Benthic foraminifera are among the most abundant groups found in deep-sea habitats, including methane seep environments. Unlike many groups, no endemic foraminiferal species have been reported from methane seeps, and to our knowledge, genetic data are currently sparse for Pacific deep-sea foraminifera. In an effort to understand the relationships between seep and non-seep populations of the deep-sea foraminifera Cibicidoides wuellerstorfi, a common paleo-indicator species, specimens from methane seeps in the Pacific were analyzed and compared to one another for genetic similarities of small subunit rDNA (SSU rDNA) sequences. Pacific Ocean C. wuellerstorfi were also compared to those collected from other localities around the world (based on 18S gene available on Genbank, e.g., Schweizer et al., 2009). Results from this study revealed that C. wuellerstorfi living in seeps near Costa Rica and Hydrate Ridge are genetically similar to one another at the species level. Individuals collected from the same location that display opposite coiling directions (dextral and sinstral) had no species level genetic differences. Comparisons of specimens with genetic information available from Genbank (SSU rDNA) showed that Pacific individuals, collected for this study, are genetically similar to those previously analyzed from the North Atlantic and Antarctic. These observations provide strong evidence for the true cosmopolitan nature of C. wuellerstorfi and highlight the importance of understanding how these microscopic organisms are able to maintain sufficient genetic exchange to remain within the same species between seep and non-seep habitats and over global distances.