The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants

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The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants. / Sapountzis, Panagiotis; Nash, David R.; Schiøtt, Morten; Boomsma, Jacobus J.

In: Molecular Ecology, Vol. 28, No. 4, 2019, p. 879-899.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Harvard

Sapountzis, P, Nash, DR, Schiøtt, M & Boomsma, JJ 2019, 'The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants', Molecular Ecology, vol. 28, no. 4, pp. 879-899. https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.14931

APA

Sapountzis, P., Nash, D. R., Schiøtt, M., & Boomsma, J. J. (2019). The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants. Molecular Ecology, 28(4), 879-899. https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.14931

Vancouver

Sapountzis P, Nash DR, Schiøtt M, Boomsma JJ. The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants. Molecular Ecology. 2019;28(4):879-899. https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.14931

Author

Sapountzis, Panagiotis ; Nash, David R. ; Schiøtt, Morten ; Boomsma, Jacobus J. / The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants. In: Molecular Ecology. 2019 ; Vol. 28, No. 4. pp. 879-899.

Bibtex

@article{2e3323a4c75446d99a8ef1198e5d8858,
title = "The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants",
abstract = "The attine ants are a monophyletic lineage that switched to fungus farming ca. 55–60 MYA. They have become a model for the study of complex symbioses after additional fungal and bacterial symbionts were discovered, but their abdominal endosymbiotic bacteria remain largely unknown. Here, we present a comparative microbiome analysis of endosymbiotic bacteria spanning the entire phylogenetic tree. We show that, across 17 representative sympatric species from eight genera sampled in Panama, abdominal microbiomes are dominated by Mollicutes, α- and γ-Proteobacteria, and Actinobacteria. Bacterial abundances increase from basal to crown branches in the phylogeny reflecting a shift towards putative specialized and abundant abdominal microbiota after the ants domesticated gongylidia-bearing cultivars, but before the origin of industrial-scale farming based on leaf-cutting herbivory. This transition coincided with the ancestral single colonization event of Central/North America ca. 20 MYA, documented in a recent phylogenomic study showing that almost the entire crown group of the higher attine ants, including the leaf-cutting ants, evolved there and not in South America. Several bacterial species are located in gut tissues or abdominal organs of the evolutionarily derived, but not the basal attine ants. The composition of abdominal microbiomes appears to be affected by the presence/absence of defensive antibiotic-producing actinobacterial biofilms on the worker ants' cuticle, but the significance of this association remains unclear. The patterns of diversity, abundance and sensitivity of the abdominal microbiomes that we obtained explore novel territory in the comparative analysis of attine fungus farming symbioses and raise new questions for further in-depth research.",
keywords = "16S-MiSeq sequencing, Actinobacteria, Attini, FISH confocal microscopy, microbiota, Mollicutes, α-Proteobacteria",
author = "Panagiotis Sapountzis and Nash, {David R.} and Morten Schi{\o}tt and Boomsma, {Jacobus J.}",
year = "2019",
doi = "10.1111/mec.14931",
language = "English",
volume = "28",
pages = "879--899",
journal = "Molecular Ecology",
issn = "0962-1083",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "4",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - The evolution of abdominal microbiomes in fungus-growing ants

AU - Sapountzis, Panagiotis

AU - Nash, David R.

AU - Schiøtt, Morten

AU - Boomsma, Jacobus J.

PY - 2019

Y1 - 2019

N2 - The attine ants are a monophyletic lineage that switched to fungus farming ca. 55–60 MYA. They have become a model for the study of complex symbioses after additional fungal and bacterial symbionts were discovered, but their abdominal endosymbiotic bacteria remain largely unknown. Here, we present a comparative microbiome analysis of endosymbiotic bacteria spanning the entire phylogenetic tree. We show that, across 17 representative sympatric species from eight genera sampled in Panama, abdominal microbiomes are dominated by Mollicutes, α- and γ-Proteobacteria, and Actinobacteria. Bacterial abundances increase from basal to crown branches in the phylogeny reflecting a shift towards putative specialized and abundant abdominal microbiota after the ants domesticated gongylidia-bearing cultivars, but before the origin of industrial-scale farming based on leaf-cutting herbivory. This transition coincided with the ancestral single colonization event of Central/North America ca. 20 MYA, documented in a recent phylogenomic study showing that almost the entire crown group of the higher attine ants, including the leaf-cutting ants, evolved there and not in South America. Several bacterial species are located in gut tissues or abdominal organs of the evolutionarily derived, but not the basal attine ants. The composition of abdominal microbiomes appears to be affected by the presence/absence of defensive antibiotic-producing actinobacterial biofilms on the worker ants' cuticle, but the significance of this association remains unclear. The patterns of diversity, abundance and sensitivity of the abdominal microbiomes that we obtained explore novel territory in the comparative analysis of attine fungus farming symbioses and raise new questions for further in-depth research.

AB - The attine ants are a monophyletic lineage that switched to fungus farming ca. 55–60 MYA. They have become a model for the study of complex symbioses after additional fungal and bacterial symbionts were discovered, but their abdominal endosymbiotic bacteria remain largely unknown. Here, we present a comparative microbiome analysis of endosymbiotic bacteria spanning the entire phylogenetic tree. We show that, across 17 representative sympatric species from eight genera sampled in Panama, abdominal microbiomes are dominated by Mollicutes, α- and γ-Proteobacteria, and Actinobacteria. Bacterial abundances increase from basal to crown branches in the phylogeny reflecting a shift towards putative specialized and abundant abdominal microbiota after the ants domesticated gongylidia-bearing cultivars, but before the origin of industrial-scale farming based on leaf-cutting herbivory. This transition coincided with the ancestral single colonization event of Central/North America ca. 20 MYA, documented in a recent phylogenomic study showing that almost the entire crown group of the higher attine ants, including the leaf-cutting ants, evolved there and not in South America. Several bacterial species are located in gut tissues or abdominal organs of the evolutionarily derived, but not the basal attine ants. The composition of abdominal microbiomes appears to be affected by the presence/absence of defensive antibiotic-producing actinobacterial biofilms on the worker ants' cuticle, but the significance of this association remains unclear. The patterns of diversity, abundance and sensitivity of the abdominal microbiomes that we obtained explore novel territory in the comparative analysis of attine fungus farming symbioses and raise new questions for further in-depth research.

KW - 16S-MiSeq sequencing

KW - Actinobacteria

KW - Attini

KW - FISH confocal microscopy

KW - microbiota

KW - Mollicutes

KW - α-Proteobacteria

U2 - 10.1111/mec.14931

DO - 10.1111/mec.14931

M3 - Journal article

VL - 28

SP - 879

EP - 899

JO - Molecular Ecology

JF - Molecular Ecology

SN - 0962-1083

IS - 4

ER -

ID: 214337443