Imaging the uptake of nitrogen-fixing bacteria into larvae of the coral Acropora millepora

Diazotrophic bacteria are instrumental in generating biologically usable forms of nitrogen by converting abundant dinitrogen gas (N-2) into available forms, such as ammonium. Although nitrogen is crucial for coral growth, direct observation of associations between diazotrophs and corals has previously been elusive. We applied fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry to observe the uptake of N-15-enriched diazotrophic Vibrio sp. isolated from Acropora millepora into conspecific coral larvae. Incorporation of Vibrio sp. cells was observed in coral larvae after 4-h incubation with enriched bacteria. Uptake was restricted to the aboral epidermis of larvae, where Vibrio cells clustered in elongated aggregations. Other bacterial associates were also observed in epidermal areas in FISH analyses. Although the fate and role of these bacteria requires additional investigation, this study describes a powerful approach to further explore cell associations and nutritional pathways in the early life stages of the coral holobiont.

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51 Mo
Supplementary Information
-46 Ko
Supplementary Table 1
-16 Ko
Supplementary Table 2
-22 Ko
Supplementary Figure 1
-126 Ko
Supplementary Figure 2
-600 Ko
Supplementary Figure 3
-479 Ko
Supplementary Figure 4
-680 Ko
Supplementary Figure 5
-600 Ko
Supplementary Figure 6
11 Mo
How to cite
Lema Anais Kimberley, Clode Peta L., Kilburn Matt R., Thornton Ruth, Willis Bette L., Bourne David G. (2016). Imaging the uptake of nitrogen-fixing bacteria into larvae of the coral Acropora millepora. Isme Journal. 10 (7). 1804-1808.,

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