Evolutionary genomics of the cold-adapted diatom Fragilariopsis cylindrus. - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Nature Year : 2017

Evolutionary genomics of the cold-adapted diatom Fragilariopsis cylindrus.

Jan Strauss
  • Function : Author
Mark Mcmullan
  • Function : Author
Pirita Paajanen
  • Function : Author
Remo Sanges
Andrew Toseland
  • Function : Author
Andrew E Allen
  • Function : Author
Florian Maumus
Alaguraj Veluchamy
Rachel Hipkin
  • Function : Author
Barbara R Lyon
  • Function : Author
Joel Martin
  • Function : Author
Chris Mayer
  • Function : Author
Hadi Quesneville
James A Raymond
  • Function : Author
Chris Uhlig
  • Function : Author
Ruben E Valas
  • Function : Author
Matthew D Clark
  • Function : Author
Chris Bowler


The Southern Ocean houses a diverse and productive community of organisms. Unicellular eukaryotic diatoms are the main primary producers in this environment, where photosynthesis is limited by low concentrations of dissolved iron and large seasonal fluctuations in light, temperature and the extent of sea ice. How diatoms have adapted to this extreme environment is largely unknown. Here we present insights into the genome evolution of a cold-adapted diatom from the Southern Ocean, Fragilariopsis cylindrus, based on a comparison with temperate diatoms. We find that approximately 24.7 per cent of the diploid F. cylindrus genome consists of genetic loci with alleles that are highly divergent (15.1 megabases of the total genome size of 61.1 megabases). These divergent alleles were differentially expressed across environmental conditions, including darkness, low iron, freezing, elevated temperature and increased CO2. Alleles with the largest ratio of non-synonymous to synonymous nucleotide substitutions also show the most pronounced condition-dependent expression, suggesting a correlation between diversifying selection and allelic differentiation. Divergent alleles may be involved in adaptation to environmental fluctuations in the Southern Ocean.

Dates and versions

hal-01587937 , version 1 (14-09-2017)



Thomas Mock, Robert P Otillar, Jan Strauss, Mark Mcmullan, Pirita Paajanen, et al.. Evolutionary genomics of the cold-adapted diatom Fragilariopsis cylindrus.. Nature, 2017, 541, pp.536-540. ⟨10.1038/nature20803⟩. ⟨hal-01587937⟩
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