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Mol Biol Evol. 2013 Jun;30(6):1258-62. doi: 10.1093/molbev/mst059. Epub 2013 Mar 21.

A phylum-level bacterial phylogenetic marker database.

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Department of Biology, University of Virginia, USA.


Large-scale, genome-level molecular phylogenetic analyses present both opportunities and challenges for bacterial evolutionary and ecological studies. We constructed a phylum-level bacterial phylogenetic marker database by surveying all complete bacterial genomes and identifying single-copy genes that were widely distributed in each of the 20 bacterial phyla. We showed that phylum trees made using these markers were highly resolved and were more robust than the bacterial genome tree based on 31 universal bacterial marker genes. In addition, using the Global Ocean Sampling data set as an example, we demonstrated that the expanded marker database greatly increased the power of metagenomic phylotyping. We incorporated the database into an automated phylogenomic inference application (Phyla-AMPHORA) and made it publicly available. We believe that this centralized resource should have broad applicability in bacterial systematics, phylogenetics, and metagenomic studies.


bacterial systematics; bacterial tree of life; bioinformatics; metagenomics; phylogenomics; phylotyping

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