Authors

Luke R. Thompson, University of Southern Mississippi
Jon G. Sanders, University of California - San Diego
Daniel McDonald, University of California - San Diego
Amnon Amir, University of California - San Diego
Joshua Ladau, University of California, San Francisco
Kenneth J. Locey, Indiana University
Robert J. Prill, IBM Almaden Research Center
Anupriya Tripathi, University of California - San Diego
Sean M. Gibbons, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Gail Ackermann, University of California - San Diego
Jose A. Navas-Molina, University of California - San Diego
Stefan Janssen, University of California - San Diego
Evguenia Kopylova, University of California - San Diego
Yoshiki Vazquez-Baeza, University of California - San Diego
Antonio Gonzalez, University of California - San Diego
James T. Morton, University of California - San Diego
Siavash Mirarab, University of California - San Diego
Zhenjiang Zech Xu, University of California - San Diego
Lingjing Jiang, University of California - San Diego
Mohamed F. Haroon, Harvard University
Jad Kanbar, University of California - San Diego
Qiyun Zhu, University of California - San Diego
Se Jin Song, University of California - San Diego
Tomasz Kosciolek, University of California - San Diego
Nicholas A. Bokulich, Northern Arizona University
Joshua Lefler, University of California - San Diego
Colin J. Brislawn, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Gregory Humphrey, University of California - San Diego
Sarah M. Owens, Argonne National Laboratory
Jarrad Hampton-Marcell, University of Illinois
Donna Berg-Lyons, University of Colorado
Valerie McKenzie, University of Colorado
Noah Fierer, University of Colorado
Jed A. Fuhrman, University of Southern California
Aaron Clauset, University of Colorado
Rick L. Stevens, University of Chicago
Ashley Shade, Michigan State University
Katherine S. Pollard, University of California, San Francisco
Kelly D. Goodwin, Southwest Fisheries Science Center
Janet K. Jansson, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Jack A. Gilbert, University of Chicago
Rob Knight, University of California - San Diego
The Earth Microbiome Project Consortium

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-2017

Department

Biological Sciences

Abstract

Our growing awareness of the microbial world's importance and diversity contrasts starkly with our limited understanding of its fundamental structure. Despite recent advances in DNA sequencing, a lack of standardized protocols and common analytical frameworks impedes comparisons among studies, hindering the development of global inferences about microbial life on Earth. Here we present a meta-analysis of microbial community samples collected by hundreds of researchers for the Earth Microbiome Project. Coordinated protocols and new analytical methods, particularly the use of exact sequences instead of clustered operational taxonomic units, enable bacterial and archaeal ribosomal RNA gene sequences to be followed across multiple studies and allow us to explore patterns of diversity at an unprecedented scale. The result is both a reference database giving global context to DNA sequence data and a framework for incorporating data from future studies, fostering increasingly complete characterization of Earth's microbial diversity.

Comments

This article is made available through a CC BY 4.0 license. More information is available from the publisher's website: https://doi.org/10.1038/nature24621

Publication Title

Nature

Volume

551

Issue

7681

First Page

457

Last Page

463

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