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New CoML Collection Published on Recent Advances in Biogeography and Taxonomy within Deep-sea Chemosynthetic Environments

PLoS ONE recently released another important landmark in biodiversity research: the Census of Marine Life (CoML) ChEss Programme Collection. The articles present some of the recent advances in biogeography (where animals live) and taxonomy (classification of organisms) within deep-sea chemosynthetic environments, where abundant life thrives fueled by chemical reactions rather than sunlight.

In situ photographs of 5 different habitat types. Photo credit: Gollner et al.

The Census of Marine Life Chemosynthetic Ecosystems project (ChEss) explored life at seeps, vents and whale falls, where cool, hot, rich in natural oils or corrosively acidic fluids fuel marine life. The ChEss programme has fostered and facilitated collaborations between hundreds of scientists from over 20 nations around the globe involved in studying species that inhabit these specific deep-water areas, including those with low or no oxygen.

New articles will be added to the initial collection over the next few months, building towards a comprehensive overview of the ChEss programme. Links within each paper are made to additional information sources, including ChEssBase, the most comprehensive database of species described from deep-sea chemosynthetic habitats, and the Encyclopedia of Life, which has detailed descriptions of each of the species mentioned in the collection.

The ChEss Collection will be featured, along with other Census of Marine Life collections, in the pilot version of the PLoS Hub for Biodiversity, to be launched later this year. This groundbreaking resource will aggregate relevant articles from a range of open-access sources including our own journal websites and PubMed Central. Please check out the call for articles to find out more about publishing your Biodiversity research in the PLoS journals.

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