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We fully sequenced the genomes of 16 Vibrio cultivars isolated from eel larvae, plastic marine debris (PMD), the pelagic brown macroalga Sargassum, and seawater samples collected from the Caribbean and Sargasso Seas of the North Atlantic Ocean. Annotation and mapping of these 16 bacterial genome sequences to a PMD-derived Vibrio metagenome-assembled genome created for this study showcased vertebrate pathogen genes closely-related to cholera and non-cholera pathovars. Phenotype testing of cultivars confirmed rapid biofilm formation, hemolytic, and lipophospholytic activities, consistent with pathogenic potential. Our study illustrates that open ocean vibrios represent a heretofore undescribed group of microbes, some representing potential new species, possessing an amalgam of pathogenic and low nutrient acquisition genes, reflecting their pelagic habitat and the substrates and hosts they colonize.
Mincer, T. J., Bos, R. P., Zettler, E. R., Zhao, S., Asbun, A. A., Orsi, W. D., … Amaral-Zettler, L. A. (2023). Sargasso Sea Vibrio bacteria: Underexplored potential pathovars in a perturbed habitat. Water Research, 242. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.watres.2023.120033