The effective diversity of order zero (q = 0) is equivalent to species richness (the total number of entities), Forskolin in vivo order 1 is proportional to the Shannon index, and q = ∞ is a measure of pure evenness . Diversity profiles significantly improve
these previous calculations of effective diversity by adding community similarity information into diversity calculations, using a similarity matrix, Z. The term “similarity” is used by Leinster & Cobbold to refer to the degree of distance or difference between organisms. The similarity matrix can accommodate genetic similarity, phenotypic similarity, or any other biologically meaningful source of similarity between two or more entities. Incorporating this information into similarity-sensitive calculations of community diversity can greatly Enzalutamide datasheet alter conclusions regarding diversity levels . For example, when taking into account similarity between taxa, a bird community comprised of one hawk, one hummingbird, and one goose would be more diverse than a community of three distinct hummingbird species. However, if similarity between taxa were not taken into account, these communities would be classified as equally diverse. For microbial communities, which
are often characterized by phylogenetic molecular markers, the use of a metric based on the average evolutionary relatedness of a community conveys more information on the uniqueness and potential function of that community than does a discrete, OTU-based approach . Recent work by Chao and colleagues , which expands on research by Faith , develops a measure of effective phylogenetic diversity. Effective phylogenetic diversity scales traditional diversity metrics by the hypothesized shared evolutionary history between taxa. Calculating phylogenetic diversity requires scaling raw taxonomic diversity by the shared evolutionary branches in a phylogeny. These branches can be either time-calibrated (ultrametric) or non-ultrametric. Even if a phylogeny is unavailable, the inclusion
Progesterone of cladistic data can be meaningful, if they accurately model shared ancestry within the study community. If the Pictilisib relative abundances of taxa or sequences are known, branches can also be weighted by abundance to compare the phylogenetic evenness among samples . Given the differences between microbial and macro-organismal community data, the primary objective of this study was to evaluate the use of diversity profiles when analyzing microbial assemblages to determine whether the inclusion of similarity data (in our case, phylogenetic data) changes our interpretation of experimental and observational data. First, to explore whether diversity profiles alter our interpretation of microbial diversity data, we calculated diversity profiles for four datasets from different environments containing all domains of life and viruses.