Single cell analysis in biological oceanography and its evolutionary implications
Journal of Plankton Research
Historically single cell analysis techniques have been used to supplement more traditional studies of primary production. The techniques have often been used as a surrogate for microscopic analysis and to close a gap in sea truth coverage for remote sensing and other mapping activities. In the course of development from Coulter counting to flow cytometry/cell sorting, the instruments and techniques have become powerful tools for allometric and ataxonomic analysis as well as the quantification
... he quantification of pigments and added metabolic stains and tagged reagents. The specific questions we ask here are: Can flow cytometry-derived data be raised to a level to discern evolutionary direction and diversity/complexity? Can we account for changes in community structure based on allometric and ataxonomic relationships across major ocean boundaries? We present evidence from different approaches and use examples from flow cytometry/cell sorting that address the causes of variation in cell size and chlorophyll fluorescence in phytoplankton. The horizon is rapidly expanding yet questions and limitations of ocean study persist. We believe that a road of commonality among oceanographers, ecologists, modelers, microbiologists, molecular biologists, physiologists and paleontologists is needed.