Different studies have highlighted the importance of the microbial community to the Ulva host.
In collaboration with the Phycology lab at Ghent University, CCMAR, and GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel we characterized the bacterial communities of 15 Ulva sensu lato species along 2,000 km of coastline spanning the full Atlantic-Baltic Sea salinity gradient.
We can show that the Ulva associated bacterial composition was strongly structured by both salinity and host species. Our results contradict earlier statements that Ulva associated bacterial communities are taxonomically highly variable across individuals and largely stochastically defined. With our work we lay a solid basis for future studies e.g. the host’s adaptation ability driven by associated bacterial communities across environmental gradients.
Our open access publication “Salinity and host drive Ulva associated bacterial
communities across the Atlantic-Baltic Sea gradient“, is now available at Molecular Ecology.