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Diversity of protist genera in periphyton of tufa-depositing karstic river

Kulaš, Antonija; Žutinić, Petar; Gulin Beljak, Vesna; Matoničkin Kepčija, Renata; Sertić Perić, Mirela; Orlić, Sandi; Sviličić Petrić, Ines; Marković, Tamara; Gligora Udovič, Marija (2023) Diversity of protist genera in periphyton of tufa-depositing karstic river. Annals of microbiology, 73 . ISSN 1590-4261

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Purpose: In aquatic ecosystems, protists play a crucial role and cover numerous ecological functions. The karstic Krka River (Croatia) is a unique hotspot for high diversity of aquatic organisms, especially protists. The main objective of the present study was to obtain a detailed overview of the protist community structure in the periphyton of the Krka River and to determine the differences in protist diversity along the river. Methods: Protist diversity was detected by amplicon sequencing of the hypervariable region V9 of the 18S rRNA gene, using the universal eukaryotic primer pair. Results: The three main groups of protists were as follows: Ciliophora, Cercozoa, and Bacillariophyta. In terms of abundance of protist OTUs, the shade plot revealed an evident difference from the upstream to downstream river section, which increased between locations from Krka spring to Skradinski buk. Diversity was explored using measures of alpha and beta diversity. Alpha diversity showed an increasing trend in the downstream direction of the river. The location effect, or clustering/grouping of samples by location, was confirmed by the PERMANOVA permutation test of beta diversity. Conclusion: The combination of alpha and beta diversity can help provide deeper insight into the study of diversity patterns, but also point out to decline in species diversity and allow for effective ways to protect aquatic karst habitats in future management.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Diatoms ; Protozoa ; Periphyton ; Karstic river ; Molecular approach
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Biology
TECHNICAL SCIENCES > Mining, Petroleum and Geology Engineering
Divisions: Division for Marine and Enviromental Research
Division of Materials Chemistry
Depositing User: Sandi Orlić
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2023 10:13
DOI: 10.1186/s13213-023-01712-z

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