Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1093/femsec/fiab017
Title (Primary) Phylogenetic and metabolic diversity have contrasting effects on the ecological functioning of bacterial communities
Author Xenophontos, C.; Taubert, M.; Harpole, W.S. ORCID logo ; Küsel, K.
Source Titel FEMS Microbiology Ecology
Year 2021
Department iDiv; PHYDIV
Volume 97
Issue 3
Page From fiab017
Language englisch
Topic T5 Future Landscapes
Keywords ecosystem functions, phylogenetic diversity, metabolic diversity, bacteria, exoenzymes, community interactions
Abstract Quantifying the relative contributions of microbial species to ecosystem functioning is challenging, because of the distinct mechanisms associated with microbial phylogenetic and metabolic diversity. We constructed bacterial communities with different diversity traits and employed exoenzyme activities (EEAs) and carbon acquisition potential (CAP) from substrates as proxies of bacterial functioning to test the independent effects of these two aspects of biodiversity. We expected that metabolic diversity, but not phylogenetic diversity would be associated with greater ecological function. Phylogenetically relatedness should intensify species interactions and coexistence, therefore amplifying the influence of metabolic diversity. We examined the effects of each diversity treatment using linear models, while controlling for the other, and found that phylogenetic diversity strongly influenced community functioning, positively and negatively. Metabolic diversity, however, exhibited negative or non-significant relationships with community functioning. When controlling for different substrates, EEAs increased along with phylogenetic diversity but decreased with metabolic diversity. The strength of diversity effects was related to substrate chemistry and the molecular mechanisms associated with each substrate's degradation. EEAs of phylogenetically similar groups were strongly affected by within-genus interactions. These results highlight the unique flexibility of microbial metabolic functions that must be considered in further ecological theory development.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Xenophontos, C., Taubert, M., Harpole, W.S., Küsel, K. (2021):
Phylogenetic and metabolic diversity have contrasting effects on the ecological functioning of bacterial communities
FEMS Microbiol. Ecol. 97 (3), fiab017 10.1093/femsec/fiab017