Encyclopedia of Metagenomics

Living Edition
| Editors: Karen E. Nelson

Metagenomics of the Coral Holobiont

  • Mónica Medina
  • Shinichi Sunagawa
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6418-1_5-3



Coral: Multicellular animal in the phylum Cnidaria, host to a diverse microbial assemblage.

Symbiodinium: The photosynthetic algal symbiont of corals and other animals.

Microbiome: The microbial assemblage and the corresponding genomes living in a particular host.

Coral holobiont: A coral host and its associated microbial community.

Bleaching: Disruption of coral-Symbiodinium symbiosis.


Coral reefs are tropical and subtropical marine oligothrophic environments. Despite the low nutrient availability, they exhibit the largest biodiversity estimates of any marine ecosystem. The estimated value of these ecosystems worldwide is of 375 billion dollars per year (Costanza et al. 1997) represented in the form of fisheries, tourism, and bioprospecting that benefit coastal communities.

Scleractinian corals are the key builders of these magnificent structures. They live in an obligate symbiosis with...


Coral Reef Microbial Diversity Coral Reef Ecosystem Coral Host Algal Symbiont 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyPennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkPA
  2. 2.Structural and Computational BiologyEuropean Molecular Biology LaboratoryHeidelbergGermany