Translator Disclaimer
1 February 2010 Metagenomics and the Units of Biological Organization
Author Affiliations +
Abstract
Metagenomics is a complex of research methodologies aimed at characterizing microbial communities and cataloging microbial diversity and distribution without isolating or culturing organisms. This approach will unavoidably engender new ways of thinking about microbial ecology that supplant the concept of “species.” This concept—thanks to comparative genomics—has in any case become increasingly unsustainable, either as a way of binning diversity or as a biological reality. Communities will become the units of evolutionary and ecological study. Although metagenomic methods will increasingly find uses in protistology and mycology, the emphasis so far has been, and our focus here will be, on prokaryotes (bacteria and archaea).
© 2010 by American Institute of Biological Sciences. All rights reserved. Request permission to photocopy or reproduce article content at the University of California Press's Rights and Permissions Web site at www.ucpressjournals.com/reprintinfo.asp.
W. Ford Doolittle and Olga Zhaxybayeva "Metagenomics and the Units of Biological Organization," BioScience 60(2), (1 February 2010). https://doi.org/10.1525/bio.2010.60.2.5
JOURNAL ARTICLE
11 PAGES

This article is only available to subscribers.
It is not available for individual sale.
+ SAVE TO MY LIBRARY

SHARE
ARTICLE IMPACT
RIGHTS & PERMISSIONS
Get copyright permission
Back to Top