NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – A large international team has uncovered unexpected genetic diversity in the miniscule marine algae Emiliania huxleyi, a species now known to have the type of variable 'pan genome' previously described in some bacterial species.

"In the sea, we thought that only bacteria were shuffling around their genes in this way," co-senior author Sonya Dyhrman, a researcher with the Columbia University Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, said in a statement, "so it was a real shock to see that [E. huxleyi] was doing the same thing."

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