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Highly competitive fungi manipulate bacterial communities in decomposing beech wood (Fagus sylvativa)

Johnston, Sarah, Hiscox, Jennifer, Savoury, Melanie, Boddy, Lynne ORCID: and Weightman, Andrew ORCID: 2019. Highly competitive fungi manipulate bacterial communities in decomposing beech wood (Fagus sylvativa). FEMS Microbiology Ecology 95 (2) 10.1093/femsec/fiy225

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The bacterial communities in decomposing wood are receiving increased attention, but their interactions with wood-decay fungi are poorly understood. This is the first field study to test the hypothesis that fungi are responsible for driving bacterial communities in beech wood (Fagus sylvatica). A meta-genetic approach was used to characterise bacterial and fungal communities in wood that had been laboratory-colonised with known wood-decay fungi, and left for a year at six woodland sites. Alpha-, Beta- and Gammaproteobacteria and Acidobacteria were the proportionally dominant bacterial taxa, as in previous studies. Pre-colonising wood with decay fungi had a clear effect on the bacterial community, apparently via direct fungal influence; the bacterial and fungal communities present at the time of collection explained nearly 60% of their mutual covariance. Site was less important than fungal influence in determining bacterial communities, but the effects of pre-colonisation were more pronounced at some sites than at others. Wood pH was also a strong bacterial predictor, but was itself under considerable fungal influence. Burkholderiaceae and Acidobacteriaceae showed directional responses against the trend of the bacterial community as a whole.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 0168-6496
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 23 November 2018
Date of Acceptance: 8 November 2018
Last Modified: 09 May 2023 20:52

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