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    Home > Biochemistry News > Biotechnology News > Wen Donghui's research group from the School of Environmental Science and Engineering published a paper revealing new progress in the "Hunger Games" of microbial survival

    Wen Donghui's research group from the School of Environmental Science and Engineering published a paper revealing new progress in the "Hunger Games" of microbial survival

    • Last Update: 2022-02-22
    • Source: Internet
    • Author: User
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    On January 10, 2022, "Nature Communications" published online the latest research results " Nutrient supply controls " by Professor Wen Donghui from the School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Professor Yang Yunfeng from Tsinghua University, and Professor Zhou Zhi from the University of Oklahoma, USA the linkage between species abundance and ecological interactions in marine bacterial communities " reports findings on biotic and abiotic factors influencing the differentiation of dominant or rare species in microbial communities

    Figure a: Distribution map of data sources for microbial communities in coastal sediments and ocean water; Figure b: Microbial interaction network model and positive and negative correlations between dominant and rare species; Figure c: Conceptual framework of the "Hunger Games" hypothesis

    The species diversity of microbial communities in the environment is extremely high, but there are few dominant species (ie, high-abundance species), and most of them are rare species with a relative abundance of less than 0.
    1% or even 0.

    It is generally believed that dominant species and rare species differ greatly in nutritional strategies and environmental adaptations, but there is no clear understanding of how biotic and abiotic factors regulate the abundance of different species in the community

    On the basis of years of research on the microbial ecology of Hangzhou Bay, Wen Donghui's research group conducted a comparative study on the microbial diversity of 243 nearshore sediments (eutrophic environment) and 139 oceanic seawater (oligotrophic environment) around the world

    The study found that the dominant species in the nearshore sediments are mostly copiotrophs, which have high copy number of rrn genes and fast growth rate, and are "opportunists" in the microbial community; the dominant species in oceanic seawater are mostly copiotrophs.
    Oligotrophs, with low copy number of rrn gene and slow growth rate, can efficiently use limited resources to maintain life processes, and are "marathon runners" in the microbial community

    By constructing a molecular ecological network, the study found that in eutrophic environments, fast-growing bacteria are "strong in numbers" and slow-growing bacteria are "competitively excluded"; while in oligotrophic environments, microorganisms are more inclined to "cooperate in groups" to alleviate resources Limit and sustain life processes

    As a result, the researchers put forward the "Hunger Games" hypothesis centered on environmental nutrient supply, individual growth strategies, and interspecies interactions

    In order to test this hypothesis, the researchers further set up a microcosm simulation experiment system with different levels of nutrient supply, and confirmed the impact of nutrient supply on the selection of microbes with different strategies and their interaction relationships

    The Hunger Games hypothesis combines environmental selection theory, growth rate hypothesis, evolutionary game theory, niche construction theory, stress gradient hypothesis The existing ecological theories and hypotheses such as hypothesis) have been expanded and extended, and the ecological mechanism of the synergy of biotic and abiotic factors to regulate the construction of microbial dominant/rare species diversity is clearly explained


    Dai Tianjiao, a 2019 doctoral graduate of the School of Environmental Science and Engineering (now a postdoctoral fellow at the School of Environment, Tsinghua University), is the first author of the paper, and Wen Donghui and Yang Yunfeng are the co-corresponding authors
    This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Project Nos.
    : 41825016, 51938001, 42007291), the Key R&D Program of the Ministry of Science and Technology (Project No.
    : 2019YFC1806204), and the "Shuimu Scholars" Program of Tsinghua University


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