30 Jul 2020

30 Jul 2020

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ESSD.

A global viral oceanography database (gVOD)

Le Xie, Wei Wei, Lanlan Cai, Xiaowei Chen, Yuhong Huang, Nianzhi Jiao, Rui Zhang, and Ya-Wei Luo Le Xie et al.
  • State Key Laboratory of Marine Environmental Science, College of Ocean and Earth Sciences, Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian 361102, China

Abstract. Virioplankton is a key component of marine biosphere in maintaining diversity of microorganisms and stabilizing ecosystems. They also greatly contribute to nutrient recycles by releasing organic matter after lysis of hosts. In this study, we constructed the first global viral oceanography database (gVOD) by collecting 10 931 viral abundance (VA) data and 727 viral production (VP) data, along with host and other oceanographic parameters when available. Most VA data were obtained in the North Atlantic (32 %) and North Pacific Oceans (29 %), while the Southeast Pacific and Indian Oceans were quite under sampled. The VA in the global ocean was 1.17 (± 3.31) × 107 particles ml−1. The lytic and lysogenic VP in the global ocean was 9.87 (± 24.16) × 105 and 2.53 (± 8.64) × 105 particles ml−1 h−1, respectively. Average VA in coastal oceans was higher than that in surface open oceans [3.61 (± 6.30) × 107 versus 0.73 (± 1.24) × 107 particles ml−1], while average VP in coastal and surface open oceans was close. Vertically, VA, lytic and lysogenic VP deceased from surface to deep ocean by about one order of magnitude. The total number of viruses in the global ocean estimated by bin average and random forest methods was 1.4 × 1030 particles and 1.39 × 1030 particles, leading to an estimate of global ocean viral biomass at 32.3 and 32.2 Tg C, respectively. We expect that the gVOD will be a fundamental and very useful database for laboratory, field and modeling studies in marine ecology and biogeochemistry. The full gVOD database is stored at PANGAEA (a temporary link:

Le Xie et al.

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Status: final response (author comments only)
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Le Xie et al.


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Short summary
Viruses play key roles in marine ecosystems by killing their hosts, maintaining diversity and recycling nutrients. In the global viral oceanography database (gVOD), 10 931 viral abundance data and 727 viral production data, along with host and other oceanographic parameters, were compiled. It identified viral data were under sampled in the Southeast Pacific and Indian Oceans. The gVOD can be used in marine viral ecology investigation and modeling of marine ecosystems and biogeochemical cycles.