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A New view of the tree of life

Hug, L. A.*; Baker, B. J.*; Anantharaman, K.*; Brown, C. T.*; Probst, A. J.*; Castelle, C. J.*; Butterfield, C. N.*; Hernsdorf, A. W.*; Amano, Yuki; Ise, Kotaro; Suzuki, Yohei*; Dudek, N.*; Relman, D.*; Finstad, K. M.*; Amundson, R.*; Thomas, B. C.*; Banfield, J. F.*

The tree of life is one of the most important organizing principles in biology. Gene surveys suggest the existence of an enormous number of branches, but even an approximation of the full scale of The Tree has remained elusive. Here, we use newly available information from genomes of uncultivated organisms, along with other published sequences, to present a new version of the Tree of life, with Bacteria, Archaea and Eukaryotes included. The depiction is both a global overview and a snapshot of the diversity within each major lineage. The results imply the predominance of bacterial diversification and underline the importance of organisms lacking isolated representatives, with substantial evolution concentrated in a major radiation of such organisms.

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