In vitro interactions between yeasts and bacteria and the fungal symbionts of the mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae)

Aaron S. Adams, Diana L. Six, Sandye M. Adams, William E. Holben

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

Multi-trophic interactions between prokaryotes, unicellular eukaryotes, and ecologically intertwined metazoans are presumably common in nature, yet rarely described. The mountain pine beetle, Dendroctonus ponderosae, is associated with two filamentous fungi, Grosmannia clavigera and Ophiostoma montium. Other microbes, including yeasts and bacteria, are also present in the phloem, but it is not known whether they interact with the symbiotic fungi or the host beetle. To test whether such interactions occur, we performed a suite of in vitro assays. Overall, relative yield of O. montium grown with microbes isolated from larval galleries was significantly greater than when the fungus was grown alone. Conversely, the yield of G. clavigera grown with these same microbes was less than or equal to when it was grown alone, suggesting that O. montium, and at least some microbes in larval galleries, have a mutualistic or commensal relationship, while G. clavigera and those same microbes have an antagonistic relationship. A bacterium isolated from phloem not colonized by beetles was found to inhibit growth of both G. clavigera and O. montium and appears to be an antagonist to both fungi. Our results suggest that bacteria and yeasts likely influence the distribution of mycangial fungi in the host tree, which, in turn, may affect the fitness of D. ponderosae.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)460-466
Number of pages7
JournalMicrobial Ecology
Volume56
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2008

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