Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1038/srep36390
Title (Primary) Mycelia as a focal point for horizontal gene transfer among soil bacteria
Author Berthold, T.; Centler, F.; H├╝bschmann, T.; Remer, R.; Thullner, M.; Harms, H.; Wick, L.Y.
Source Titel Scientific Reports
Year 2016
Department UMB; iDiv
Volume 6
Page From art. 36390
Language englisch
UFZ wide themes RU3;
Abstract Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is a main mechanism of bacterial evolution endowing bacteria with new genetic traits. The transfer of mobile genetic elements such as plasmids (conjugation) requires the close proximity of cells. HGT between genetically distinct bacteria largely depends on cell movement in water films, which are typically discontinuous in natural systems like soil. Using laboratory microcosms, a bacterial reporter system and flow cytometry, we here investigated if and to which degree mycelial networks facilitate contact of and HGT between spatially separated bacteria. Our study shows that the network structures of mycelia promote bacterial HGT by providing continuous liquid films in which bacterial migration and contacts are favoured. This finding was confirmed by individual-based simulations, revealing that the tendency of migrating bacteria to concentrate in the liquid film around hyphae is a key factor for improved HGT along mycelial networks. Given their ubiquity, we propose that hyphae can act as focal point for HGT and genetic adaptation in soil.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Berthold, T., Centler, F., H├╝bschmann, T., Remer, R., Thullner, M., Harms, H., Wick, L.Y. (2016):
Mycelia as a focal point for horizontal gene transfer among soil bacteria
Sci. Rep. 6 , art. 36390 10.1038/srep36390