Niche-based assembly of bacterial consortia on the diatom Thalassiosira rotula is stable and reproducible


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tilmann.harder [ at ] awi.de

Abstract

With each cell division, phytoplankton create new space for primary colonization by marine bacteria. Although this surface microenvironment is available to all planktonic bacterial colonizers, we show the assembly of bacterial consortia on a cosmopolitan marine diatom to be highly specific and reproducible. While phytoplankton–bacteria interactions play fundamental roles in marine ecosystems, namely primary production and the carbon cycle, the ecological paradigm behind epiphytic microbiome assembly remains poorly understood. In a replicated and repeated primary colonization experiment, we exposed the axenic diatom Thalassiosira rotula to several complex and compositionally different bacterial inocula derived from phytoplankton species of varying degrees of relatedness to the axenic Thalassiosira host or natural seawater. This revealed a convergent assembly of diverse and compositionally different bacterial inocula, containing up to 2071 operational taxonomic units (OTUs), towards a stable and reproducible core community. Four of these OTUs already accounted for a cumulative abundance of 60%. This core community was dominated by Rhodobacteraceae (30.5%), Alteromonadaceae (27.7%), and Oceanospirillales (18.5%) which was qualitatively and quantitatively most similar to its conspecific original. These findings reject a lottery assembly model of bacterial colonization and suggest selective microhabitat filtering. This is likely due to diatom host traits such as surface properties and different levels of specialization resulting in reciprocal stable-state associations.



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ISI/Scopus peer-reviewed
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Published
Eprint ID
51458
DOI 10.1038/s41396-020-0631-5

Cite as
Mönnich, J. , Tebben, J. , Bergemann, J. , Case, R. , Wohlrab, S. and Harder, T. (2020): Niche-based assembly of bacterial consortia on the diatom Thalassiosira rotula is stable and reproducible , The Isme Journal . doi: 10.1038/s41396-020-0631-5


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