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Metagenomic Characterization of Soil Microbial Communities in the Luquillo Experimental Forest (Puerto Rico) and Implications for Nitrogen CyclingDrake, Harold L. (Ed.)ABSTRACT The phylogenetic and functional diversities of microbial communities in tropical rainforests and how these differ from those of temperate communities remain poorly described but are directly related to the increased fluxes of greenhouse gases such as nitrous oxide (N 2 O) from the tropics. Toward closing these knowledge gaps, we analyzed replicated shotgun metagenomes representing distinct life zones and an elevation gradient from four locations in the Luquillo Experimental Forest (LEF), Puerto Rico. These soils had a distinct microbial community composition and lower species diversity compared to those of temperate grasslands or agricultural soils. In contrast to the overall distinct community composition, the relative abundances and nucleotide sequences of N 2 O reductases ( nosZ ) were highly similar between tropical forest and temperate soils. However, respiratory NO reductase ( norB ) was 2-fold more abundant in the tropical soils, which might be relatable to their greater N 2 O emissions. Nitrogen fixation ( nifH ) also showed higher relative abundance in rainforest than in temperate soils, i.e., 20% versus 0.1 to 0.3% of bacterial genomes in each soil type harbored the gene, respectively. Finally, unlike temperate soils, LEF soils showed little stratification with depth in the first 0more »
Drake, Harold L. (Ed.)ABSTRACT Beneficial gut microbes can facilitate insect growth on diverse diets. The omnivorous American cockroach, Periplaneta americana (Insecta: Blattodea), thrives on a diet rich in plant polysaccharides and harbors a species-rich gut microbiota responsive to host diet. Bacteroidetes are among the most abundant taxa in P. americana and other cockroaches, based on cultivation-independent gut community profiling, and these potentially polysaccharolytic bacteria may contribute to host diet processing. Eleven Bacteroidetes isolates were cultivated from P. americana digestive tracts, and phylogenomic analyses suggest that they were new Bacteroides , Dysgonomonas , Paludibacter , and Parabacteroides species distinct from those previously isolated from other insects, humans, and environmental sources. In addition, complete genomes were generated for each isolate, and polysaccharide utilization loci (PULs) and several non-PUL-associated carbohydrate-active enzyme (CAZyme)-coding genes that putatively target starch, pectin, and/or cellulose were annotated in each of the isolate genomes. Type IX secretion system (T9SS)- and CAZyme-coding genes tagged with the corresponding T9SS recognition and export C-terminal domain were observed in some isolates, suggesting that these CAZymes were deployed via non-PUL outer membrane translocons. Additionally, single-substrate growth and enzymatic assays confirmed genomic predictions that a subset of the Bacteroides and Dysgonomonas isolates could degrade starch, pectin, and/or cellulosemore »