Large-Scale Sequence-Based Information

Novel Understanding of Ecology and Novel Avenues to Test Ecological Hypotheses

Authored by: Achim Quaiser , Alexis Dufresne , Sophie Michon-Coudouel , Marine Biget , Philippe Vandenkoornhuyse

Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Infrastructures

Print publication date:  February  2017
Online publication date:  March  2017

Print ISBN: 9781498751315
eBook ISBN: 9781315368252
Adobe ISBN:


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Ecology entered a new era with growing evidences of the huge impact of microorganisms on all existing ecosystems. Molecular approaches, such as the SSU rRNA gene analysis and environmental genomic approaches, identified an unexpected microbial taxonomic and functional diversity in all kinds of habitats. This diversity and the low cultivability suggest functional interactions within microbial communities as well as between microbial communities and plants or animals in dependence of the environmental conditions. These findings shape the groundwork of new revolutionary ecological concepts away from isolated characteristics of organisms to broad holistic*/integrated views. Aiming to capture and to understand the functioning of interacting microbial communities, they must be considered as a whole, in constant evolution and in adaptation to environmental factors. Since there is no all-inclusive approach combining all targeted aspects of analysis, results obtained from particular molecular ecology approaches are still rather tesserae. Nevertheless, combining different approaches fills the mosaic leading to more comprehensive reproductions of in situ community functions.

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