Microbial metatranscriptomes from the thermally stratified Gulf of Aqaba/Eilat during summer

Dan R. Miller, Ulrike Pfreundt, Hila Elifantz, Wolfgang R. Hess, Ilana Berman-Frank

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The water column in the oligotrophic Gulf of Aqaba/Eilat experiences distinct seasonal cycles with the cooling air and water temperatures of late fall and winter destabilizing the thermocline and forming mixed layer depths reaching 300 to 700 m. As air temperatures warm thermal re-stratification results in a stable thermocline throughout the summer which physically separates a photic, nutrient-poor surface layer from an aphotic, nutrient-rich deep layer. Here we present the first metatranscriptome dataset, and its taxonomic assignments, sampled from three depths of the 700 m deep Station A in the Gulf of Aqaba during the summer stratification (surface – 10 m, deep chlorophyll maximum (DCM) – 85 m, deep aphotic zone − 500 m). Intensive transcriptional activity was attributed to Prochlorococcus - the most abundant photosynthetic organism in the RNA-seq dataset - both at the surface and at the DCM. In contrast, cDNA reads related to picoeukaryotic algae were detected almost exclusively at the DCM. The metatranscriptomes presented here provide a basis for examining the seasonal differences in microbial gene expression by comparison with the published metatranscriptomes sampled during the winter deep-mixing from the same station.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-26
Number of pages4
JournalMarine Genomics
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier B.V.


  • Gene expression
  • Gulf of Aqaba/Eilat
  • Marine bacteria
  • Metatranscriptomics
  • Microbial communities
  • Prochlorococcus
  • RNA-seq

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Genetics


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