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Can Nonloricate Ciliate Assemblages be a Surrogate to Analyze Taxonomic Relatedness Pattern of Ciliated Protozoan Communities for Marine Bioassessment? A Case Study in Jiaozhou Bay, Northern China

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Congruency using nonloricate ciliates as a surrogate to analyze taxonomic distinctness pattern of ciliated protozoan communities for assessing water quality was studied. The results showed that (1) with significant consistency with the total ciliate communities, the spatial pattern of nonloricate ciliates was significantly correlated with the changes of environmental status; (2) four taxonomic relatedness measures were significantly correlated with those of the total ciliate communities; (3) spatial variations in four taxonomic diversity indices of nonloricate ciliates were significantly related with the changes of environmental variables, especially nutrients; and (4) the paired taxonomic biodiversity indices of nonloricate ciliates showed a clear decreasing trend of departure from the expected taxonomic breadth in response to water quality. These results suggest that nonloricate ciliate assemblages can be used as a potential surrogate of ciliate communities to assess marine water quality using taxonomic distinctness measures, especially the paired indices based on presence or absence data.

Keywords: bioassessment; ciliated protozoa; environmental stress; microbial ecology; taxonomic distinctness

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: November 1, 2012

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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