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      Speciation by Symbiosis: the Microbiome and Behavior

      review-article
      a , a , b ,
      mBio
      American Society for Microbiology

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          ABSTRACT

          Species are fundamental units of comparison in biology. The newly discovered importance and ubiquity of host-associated microorganisms are now stimulating work on the roles that microbes can play in animal speciation. We previously synthesized the literature and advanced concepts of speciation by symbiosis with notable attention to hybrid sterility and lethality. Here, we review recent studies and relevant data on microbes as players in host behavior and behavioral isolation, emphasizing the patterns seen in these analyses and highlighting areas worthy of additional exploration. We conclude that the role of microbial symbionts in behavior and speciation is gaining exciting traction and that the holobiont and hologenome concepts afford an evolving intellectual framework to promote research and intellectual exchange between disciplines such as behavior, microbiology, genetics, symbiosis, and speciation. Given the increasing centrality of microbiology in macroscopic life, microbial symbiosis is arguably the most neglected aspect of animal and plant speciation, and studying it should yield a better understanding of the origin of species.

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          Most cited references109

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          Wolbachia: master manipulators of invertebrate biology.

          Wolbachia are common intracellular bacteria that are found in arthropods and nematodes. These alphaproteobacteria endosymbionts are transmitted vertically through host eggs and alter host biology in diverse ways, including the induction of reproductive manipulations, such as feminization, parthenogenesis, male killing and sperm-egg incompatibility. They can also move horizontally across species boundaries, resulting in a widespread and global distribution in diverse invertebrate hosts. Here, we review the basic biology of Wolbachia, with emphasis on recent advances in our understanding of these fascinating endosymbionts.
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            Individuality in gut microbiota composition is a complex polygenic trait shaped by multiple environmental and host genetic factors.

            In vertebrates, including humans, individuals harbor gut microbial communities whose species composition and relative proportions of dominant microbial groups are tremendously varied. Although external and stochastic factors clearly contribute to the individuality of the microbiota, the fundamental principles dictating how environmental factors and host genetic factors combine to shape this complex ecosystem are largely unknown and require systematic study. Here we examined factors that affect microbiota composition in a large (n = 645) mouse advanced intercross line originating from a cross between C57BL/6J and an ICR-derived outbred line (HR). Quantitative pyrosequencing of the microbiota defined a core measurable microbiota (CMM) of 64 conserved taxonomic groups that varied quantitatively across most animals in the population. Although some of this variation can be explained by litter and cohort effects, individual host genotype had a measurable contribution. Testing of the CMM abundances for cosegregation with 530 fully informative SNP markers identified 18 host quantitative trait loci (QTL) that show significant or suggestive genome-wide linkage with relative abundances of specific microbial taxa. These QTL affect microbiota composition in three ways; some loci control individual microbial species, some control groups of related taxa, and some have putative pleiotropic effects on groups of distantly related organisms. These data provide clear evidence for the importance of host genetic control in shaping individual microbiome diversity in mammals, a key step toward understanding the factors that govern the assemblages of gut microbiota associated with complex diseases.
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              Has the microbiota played a critical role in the evolution of the adaptive immune system?

              Although microbes have been classically viewed as pathogens, it is now well established that the majority of host-bacterial interactions are symbiotic. During development and into adulthood, gut bacteria shape the tissues, cells, and molecular profile of our gastrointestinal immune system. This partnership, forged over many millennia of coevolution, is based on a molecular exchange involving bacterial signals that are recognized by host receptors to mediate beneficial outcomes for both microbes and humans. We explore how specific aspects of the adaptive immune system are influenced by intestinal commensal bacteria. Understanding the molecular mechanisms that mediate symbiosis between commensal bacteria and humans may redefine how we view the evolution of adaptive immunity and consequently how we approach the treatment of numerous immunologic disorders.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                mBio
                MBio
                mbio
                mbio
                mBio
                mBio
                American Society for Microbiology (1752 N St., N.W., Washington, DC )
                2150-7511
                31 March 2016
                Mar-Apr 2016
                : 7
                : 2
                : e01785-15
                Affiliations
                [a ]Department of Biological Sciences, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, USA
                [b ]Department of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, USA
                Author notes
                Address correspondence to Seth R. Bordenstein, s.bordenstein@ 123456vanderbilt.edu .

                Invited Editor Nicole Dubilier, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology Editor R. John Collier, Harvard Medical School

                Article
                mBio01785-15
                10.1128/mBio.01785-15
                4817261
                27034284
                4ed1b768-d70c-42c7-a072-80cd3c1fa0cb
                Copyright © 2016 Shropshire and Bordenstein.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license, which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                History
                Page count
                supplementary-material: 0, Figures: 2, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 150, Pages: 11, Words: 9906
                Funding
                Funded by: National Science Foundation (NSF) http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/100000001
                Award ID: IOS 1456778
                Award ID: DEB 1046149
                Award Recipient : Seth R. Bordenstein
                Categories
                Minireview
                Custom metadata
                March/April 2016

                Life sciences
                Life sciences

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