New images of complex microbiome environments visualized by Berkeley Metagenomics Lab and Stamen…
What is metagenomics?
A metagenome is a collection of DNA sequences from the organisms present in an environment at the time a sample is taken. Metagenomics is the study of these genomic sequences. Metagenomics has been around in various forms since the early 2000s. Initially, the approach was referred to as “community genomics” because the sequencing approaches were used to study natural microbial communities. It wasn’t until the mid 2000s that it acquired its “meta” label. In the first studies, both genome reconstruction-based approaches and analyses of collections of genes without organism affiliation were used. Both of these methods are distinct from investigations of specific marker genes that had been used previously to phylogenetically “fingerprint” environments.
The primary difference is that genome sequences provide some insight into what all the organisms might be doing. Fingerprinting methods mostly tell us how closely organisms are related to each other.
All maps are wrong. I cut open a globe to show why. - Vox
Maps are flat representations of our spherical planet. I cut open a plastic globe to understand just what it takes to turn a sphere into something flat: