Population Genomics of Archaea: Signatures of Archaeal Biology from Natural Populations

  • David J. Krause
  • Rachel J. Whitaker
Part of the Population Genomics book series (POGE)


Since the advance of high-throughput whole-genome sequencing, microbial population biology has been providing insight into the processes that generate and maintain genomic diversity and shedding light on the complex lives of microorganisms in the natural environment. The domain archaea harbors a wealth of diverse populations useful for studying microbial population biology in highly varied environments, and their deep divergence from Bacteria creates a distinct, independent field of study despite superficial similarities. Today, much of the knowledge derived from archaeal population genomics is the result of culturing individuals from the environment and sequencing isolates, which has enabled the study of population biology for several archaeal species, including mutation rates, recombination rates, and the influence of environmental selection. With a constantly increasing volume of metagenomic data and advancing technology for single-cell genomics, population genomics is making its way into the uncultured majority that has otherwise evaded previous population genomic techniques, and the unique biology of the archaea is poised to enhance our understanding of microbial population biology.


Archaea Genome architecture Population structure Recombination Selection Species 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Genetics, Genome Center of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Energy Institute, J. F. Crow Institute for the Study of EvolutionUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology, Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic BiologyUniversity of Illinois Urbana-ChampaignChampaignUSA

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