Microbial island biogeography: isolation shapes the life history characteristics but not diversity of root-symbiotic fungal communities

John Davison, Mari Moora, Maarja Öpik, Leho Ainsaar, Marc Ducousso, Inga Hiiesalu, Teele Jairus, Nancy Johnson, Philippe Jourand, Rein Kalamees, Kadri Koorem, Jean Yves Meyer, Kersti Püssa, Ülle Reier, Meelis Pärtel, Marina Semchenko, Anna Traveset, Martti Vasar, Martin Zobel

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10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Island biogeography theory is one of the most influential paradigms in ecology. That island characteristics, including remoteness, can profoundly modulate biological diversity has been borne out by studies of animals and plants. By contrast, the processes influencing microbial diversity in island systems remain largely undetermined. We sequenced arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungal DNA from plant roots collected on 13 islands worldwide and compared AM fungal diversity on islands with existing data from mainland sites. AM fungal communities on islands (even those >6000 km from the closest mainland) comprised few endemic taxa and were as diverse as mainland communities. Thus, in contrast to patterns recorded among macro-organisms, efficient dispersal appears to outweigh the effects of taxogenesis and extinction in regulating AM fungal diversity on islands. Nonetheless, AM fungal communities on more distant islands comprised a higher proportion of previously cultured and large-spored taxa, indicating that dispersal may be human-mediated or require tolerance of significant environmental stress, such as exposure to sunlight or high salinity. The processes driving large-scale patterns of microbial diversity are a key consideration for attempts to conserve and restore functioning ecosystems in this era of rapid global change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalISME Journal
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jun 8 2018

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

Davison, J., Moora, M., Öpik, M., Ainsaar, L., Ducousso, M., Hiiesalu, I., Jairus, T., Johnson, N., Jourand, P., Kalamees, R., Koorem, K., Meyer, J. Y., Püssa, K., Reier, Ü., Pärtel, M., Semchenko, M., Traveset, A., Vasar, M., & Zobel, M. (Accepted/In press). Microbial island biogeography: isolation shapes the life history characteristics but not diversity of root-symbiotic fungal communities. ISME Journal, 1-14. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41396-018-0196-8