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First report of Osedax in the Indian Ocean indicative of trans-oceanic dispersal through the Southern Ocean


Three specimens of the bone-eating worms, Osedax rubiplumus Rouse, Goffredi & Vrijenhoek, 2004, were collected from pig bones deployed in the periphery of Longqi vent field on the Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR). Osedax rubiplumus was previously only reported in both the eastern and western North Pacific and Antarctic oceans. Our finding extends its range to the Indian Ocean, representing a much wider distribution of O. rubiplumus than previously expected. Moreover, all individuals of O. rubiplumus from the SWIR form a single haplotype with the highest divergence from the Pacific ones.

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We thank all the crew and scientists onboard the R/V Xiangyanghong 10 during the cruises DY43 and DY49 for their help on the deployment and recovery of the mooring system. We are also grateful to the editors and anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments to improve the manuscript. Special thanks are given to Ruiyan Zhang, who helps us to reword the text and improve the readability.

Funding information

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) (Grant No. 41606156), the Scientific Research Fund of the Second Institute of Oceanography, MNR (Grant No. QNYC1902), the Foundation of China Ocean Mineral Resources R & D Association (No. DY135-E2-1-02), and the National Key Research and Development Program of China (Grant No. 2017YFC0306603). Cruises DY43 and DY49 were supported by the Foundation of China Ocean Mineral Resources R & D Association (No. DYHC-135-43 and No. DYHC-135-49).

Author information

Correspondence to Chunsheng Wang.

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Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed by the authors.

Sampling and field studies

All necessary permits for sampling and observational field studies have been obtained by the authors from the competent authorities and are mentioned in the acknowledgments, if applicable.

Data availability

The datasets generated and/or analyzed during the current study are available in the GenBank (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/nucleotide/).

Author contribution

CW conceived the research. YZ, YW, ZL and CS designed this research. YW and CS carried out the field experiment. YZ, YW and YL analyzed the data. YZ, YL, ZL and CW wrote the manuscript. All of the authors read and approved the manuscript.

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Zhou, Y., Wang, Y., Li, Y. et al. First report of Osedax in the Indian Ocean indicative of trans-oceanic dispersal through the Southern Ocean. Mar. Biodivers. 50, 4 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12526-019-01034-x

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  • Osedax rubiplumus
  • New record
  • Biogeography
  • Southwest Indian Ocean