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Nat Rev Microbiol. 2015 Nov;13(11):691-706. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro3549. Epub 2015 Oct 12.

Microbial ecology of Antarctic aquatic systems.

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School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales 2052, Australia.

Erratum in

  • Nat Rev Microbiol. 2015 Dec;13(12):795.


The Earth's biosphere is dominated by cold environments, and the cold biosphere is dominated by microorganisms. Microorganisms in cold Southern Ocean waters are recognized for having crucial roles in global biogeochemical cycles, including carbon sequestration, whereas microorganisms in other Antarctic aquatic biomes are not as well understood. In this Review, I consider what has been learned about Antarctic aquatic microbial ecology from 'omic' studies. I assess the factors that shape the biogeography of Antarctic microorganisms, reflect on some of the unusual biogeochemical cycles that they are associated with and discuss the important roles that viruses have in controlling ecosystem function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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