Distinct community structures of soil nematodes from three ecologically different sites revealed by high-throughput amplicon sequencing of four 18S ribosomal RNA gene regions.
ABSTRACT: Quantitative taxonomic compositions of nematode communities help to assess soil environments due to their rich abundance and various feeding habitats. DNA metabarcoding by the 18S ribosomal RNA gene (SSU) regions were preferentially used for analyses of soil nematode communities, but the optimal regions for high-throughput amplicon sequencing have not previously been well investigated. In this work, we performed Illumina-based amplicon sequencing of four SSU regions (regions 1-4) to identify suitable regions for nematode metabarcoding using the taxonomic structures of nematodes from uncultivated field, copse, and cultivated house garden soils. The fewest nematode-derived sequence variants (SVs) were detected in region 3, and the total nematode-derived SVs were comparable in regions 1 and 4. The relative abundances of reads in regions 1 and 4 were consistent in both orders and feeding groups with prior studies, thus suggesting that region 4 is a suitable target for the DNA barcoding of nematode communities. Distinct community structures of nematodes were detected in the taxon, feeding habitat, and life-history strategy of each sample; i.e., Dorylamida- and Rhabditida-derived plant feeders were most abundant in the copse soil, Rhabditida-derived bacteria feeders in the house garden soil, and Mononchida- and Dorylamida-derived omnivores and predators and Rhabditida-derived bacteria feeders in the field soil. Additionally, low- and high-colonizer-persister (cp) groups of nematodes dominated in the house garden and copse soils, respectively, whereas both groups were found in the field soil, suggesting bacteria-rich garden soil, undisturbed and plant-rich copse soil, and a transient status of nematode communities in the field soil. These results were also supported by the maturity indices of the three sampling sites. Finally, the influence of the primer tail sequences was demonstrated to be insignificant on amplification. These findings will be useful for DNA metabarcoding of soil nematode communities by amplicon sequencing.
Project description:Nematodes are abundant metazoans that play crucial roles in nutrient recycle in the pedosphere. Although high-throughput amplicon sequencing is a powerful tool for the taxonomic profiling of soil nematodes, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primers for amplification of the 18S ribosomal RNA (SSU) gene and preparation of template DNAs have not been sufficiently evaluated. We investigated nematode community structure in copse soil using four nematode-specific (regions 1–4) and two universal (regions U1 and U2) primer sets for the SSU gene regions with two DNAs prepared from copse-derived mixed nematodes and whole soil. The major nematode-derived sequence variants (SVs) identified in each region was detected in both template DNAs. Order level taxonomy and feeding type of identified nematode-derived SVs were distantly related between the two DNA preparations, and the region U2 was closely related to region 4 in the non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) based on Bray-Curtis dissimilarity. Thus, the universal primers for region U2 could be used to analyze soil nematode communities. We further applied this method to analyze the nematodes living in two sampling sites of a sweet potato-cultivated field, where the plants were differently growing. The structure of nematode-derived SVs from the two sites was distantly related in the principal coordinate analysis (PCoA) with weighted unifrac distances, suggesting their distinct soil environments. The resultant ecophysiological status of the nematode communities in the copse and field on the basis of feeding behavior and maturity indices was fairly consistent with those of the copse- and the cultivated house garden-derived nematodes in prior studies. These findings will be useful for the DNA metabarcoding of soil eukaryotes, including nematodes, using soil DNAs.
Project description:Nematodes are representative soil metazoans with diverged species that play crucial roles in nutrient recycling in the pedosphere. Qualitative and quantitative information on nematode communities is useful for assessing soil quality, and DNA barcode-mediated taxonomic analysis is a powerful tool to investigate taxonomic compositions and changes in nematode communities. Here, we investigated four regions (regions 1-4) of the 18S small subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU) gene as PCR targets of deep amplicon sequencing for the taxonomic profiling of individual soil nematodes. We determined the sequence variants (SVs) of 4 SSU regions for 96 nematodes (total 384 amplicons) isolated from copse soils and assigned their taxonomy using the QIIME2 software with dada2 or deblur algorithm and the SILVA database. Dada2 detected approximately 2-fold more nematode-derived SVs than deblur, and a larger number of SVs were obtained in regions 1 and 4 than those in other regions. These results and sufficient reference sequence coverage in region 4 indicated that DNA barcoding using a primer set for region 4 followed by dada2-based analysis would be most suitable for soil nematode taxonomic analysis. Eighteen SSU-derived operational taxonomic units (rOTUs) were obtained from 68 isolates, and their orders were determined based on the phylogenetic trees built by four regional sequences of rOTUs and 116 nematode reference species as well as the BLASTN search. The majority of the isolates were derived from three major orders Dorylaimida (6 rOTUs, 51.5% in 68 isolates), Rhabditida (4 rOTUs, 29.4%), and Triplonchida (7 rOTUs, 17.6%). The predicted feeding types of the isolates were fungivores (38.2% in total nematodes), plant feeders (32.4%), and 14.7% for both bacterivores and omnivores/predators. Additionally, we attempted to improve the branch structure of phylogenetic trees by using long nucleotide sequences artificially prepared by connecting regional sequences, but the effect was limited.
Project description:Soil biodiversity plays a key regulation role in the ecosystem services that underpin regenerative sustainable agriculture. It can be impacted by agricultural management techniques, both positively (through measures such as compost application) and negatively (through, for example, application of synthetic nitrogen). As one of the most numerous members of the soil biota, nematodes are well established as indicators for the soil food web. However, compost application also includes the addition of nematodes present in compost and their subsequent survival in soil is unknown. Nematode communities within the compost applied to soil, and nematode communities in the soil of a multi-year rotational cropping field trial in Melle (Belgium) were studied using morphological and metabarcoding techniques. Compost (C) and nitrogen fertilizer (NF) treated plots were compared. Three replicate plots were investigated for each of the following treatments: C application only; C and NF application; NF only; no C and no NF (control). Plots were sampled six times between 2015-2017, before and after C or NF were added each spring and after crop harvest (except for 2017). NF treatment resulted in a significant decrease of fungal feeding and predatory nematodes, while herbivorous nematodes were positively affected. Remarkably, we did not find compost addition to exert any noticeable effects on the soil nematode community. The morphological and metabarcoding data resulted in different results of the nematode community composition. However, trends and patterns in the two data sets were congruent when observed with NMDS plots and using the nematode maturity index. Metabarcoding of individual compost nematode taxa demonstrated that nematodes originating from compost did not persist in soil.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Gastrointestinal parasitic nematodes can impact fecundity, development, behaviour, and survival in wild vertebrate populations. Conventional monitoring of gastrointestinal parasitic nematodes in wild populations involves morphological identification of eggs, larvae, and adults from faeces or intestinal samples. Adult worms are typically required for species-level identification, meaning intestinal material from dead animals is needed to characterize the nematode community with high taxonomic resolution. DNA metabarcoding of environmental samples is increasingly used for time- and cost-effective, high-throughput biodiversity monitoring of small-bodied organisms, including parasite communities. Here, we evaluate the potential of DNA metabarcoding of faeces and soil samples for non-invasive monitoring of gastrointestinal parasitic nematode communities in a wild ruminant population.<h4>Methods</h4>Faeces and intestines were collected from a population of wild reindeer, and soil was collected both from areas showing signs of animal congregation, as well as areas with no signs of animal activity. Gastrointestinal parasitic nematode faunas were characterized using traditional morphological methods that involve flotation and sedimentation steps to concentrate nematode biomass, as well as using DNA metabarcoding. DNA metabarcoding was conducted on bulk samples, in addition to samples having undergone sedimentation and flotation treatments.<h4>Results</h4>DNA metabarcoding and morphological approaches were largely congruent, recovering similar nematode faunas from all samples. However, metabarcoding provided higher-resolution taxonomic data than morphological identification in both faeces and soil samples. Although concentration of nematode biomass by sedimentation or flotation prior to DNA metabarcoding reduced non-target amplification and increased the diversity of sequence variants recovered from each sample, the pretreatments did not improve species detection rates in soil and faeces samples.<h4>Conclusions</h4>DNA metabarcoding of bulk faeces samples is a non-invasive, time- and cost-effective method for assessing parasitic nematode populations that provides data with comparable taxonomic resolution to morphological methods that depend on parasitological investigations of dead animals. The successful detection of parasitic gastrointestinal nematodes from soils demonstrates the utility of this approach for mapping distribution and occurrences of the free-living stages of gastrointestinal parasitic nematodes.
Project description:We used complementary morphological and DNA metabarcoding approaches to characterize soil nematode communities in three cropping systems, conventional till (CT), no-till (NT) and organic (ORG), from a long-term field experiment. We hypothesized that organic inputs to the ORG system would promote a more abundant nematode community, and that the NT system would show a more structured trophic system (higher Bongers MI) than CT due to decreased soil disturbance. The abundance of Tylenchidae and Cephalobidae both showed positive correlations to soil organic carbon and nitrogen, which were highest in the ORG system. The density of omnivore-predator and bacterial-feeding nematodes was reduced in NT soils compared to CT, while some plant-parasitic taxa increased. NT soils had similar Bongers MI values to CT, suggesting they contained nematode communities associated with soils experiencing comparable levels of disturbance. Metabarcoding revealed within-family differences in nematode diversity. Shannon and Simpson's index values for the Tylenchidae and Rhabditidae were higher in the ORG system than CT. Compared to morphological analysis, metabarcoding over- or underestimated the prevalence of several nematode families and detected some families not observed based on morphology. Discrepancies between the techniques require further investigation to establish the accuracy of metabarcoding for characterization of soil nematode communities.
Project description:Soil nematodes play crucial roles in the soil food web and are a suitable indicator for assessing soil environments and ecosystems. Previous nematode community analyses based on nematode morphology classification have been shown to be useful for assessing various soil environments. Here we have conducted DNA barcode analysis for soil nematode community analyses in Japanese soils. We isolated nematodes from two different environmental soils of an unmanaged flowerbed and an agricultural field using the improved flotation-sieving method. Small subunit (SSU) rDNA fragments were directly amplified from each of 68 (flowerbed samples) and 48 (field samples) isolated nematodes to determine the nucleotide sequence. Sixteen and thirteen operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were obtained by multiple sequence alignment from the flowerbed and agricultural field nematodes, respectively. All 29 SSU rDNA-derived OTUs (rOTUs) were further mapped onto a phylogenetic tree with 107 known nematode species. Interestingly, the two nematode communities examined were clearly distinct from each other in terms of trophic groups: Animal predators and plant feeders were markedly abundant in the flowerbed soils, in contrast, bacterial feeders were dominantly observed in the agricultural field soils. The data from the flowerbed nematodes suggests a possible food web among two different trophic nematode groups and plants (weeds) in the closed soil environment. Finally, DNA sequences derived from the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase c subunit 1 (COI) gene were determined as a DNA barcode from 43 agricultural field soil nematodes. These nematodes were assigned to 13 rDNA-derived OTUs, but in the COI gene analysis were assigned to 23 COI gene-derived OTUs (cOTUs), indicating that COI gene-based barcoding may provide higher taxonomic resolution than conventional SSU rDNA-barcoding in soil nematode community analysis.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Changes in plant diversity may induce distinct changes in soil food web structure and accompanying soil feedbacks to plants. However, knowledge of the long-term consequences of plant community simplification for soil animal food webs and functioning is scarce. Nematodes, the most abundant and diverse soil Metazoa, represent the complexity of soil food webs as they comprise all major trophic groups and allow calculation of a number of functional indices.<h4>Methodology/principal findings</h4>We studied the functional composition of nematode communities three and five years after establishment of a grassland plant diversity experiment (Jena Experiment). In response to plant community simplification common nematode species disappeared and pronounced functional shifts in community structure occurred. The relevance of the fungal energy channel was higher in spring 2007 than in autumn 2005, particularly in species-rich plant assemblages. This resulted in a significant positive relationship between plant species richness and the ratio of fungal-to-bacterial feeders. Moreover, the density of predators increased significantly with plant diversity after five years, pointing to increased soil food web complexity in species-rich plant assemblages. Remarkably, in complex plant communities the nematode community shifted in favour of microbivores and predators, thereby reducing the relative abundance of plant feeders after five years.<h4>Conclusions/significance</h4>The results suggest that species-poor plant assemblages may suffer from nematode communities detrimental to plants, whereas species-rich plant assemblages support a higher proportion of microbivorous nematodes stimulating nutrient cycling and hence plant performance; i.e. effects of nematodes on plants may switch from negative to positive. Overall, food web complexity is likely to decrease in response to plant community simplification and results of this study suggest that this results mainly from the loss of common species which likely alter plant-nematode interactions.
Project description:Agriculture affects soil and root microbial communities. However, detailed knowledge is needed on the effects of cropping on rhizosphere, including biological control agents (BCA) of nematodes. A metabarcoding study was carried out on the microbiota associated with plant parasitic and other nematode functional groups present in banana farms in Tenerife (Canary Islands, Spain). Samples included rhizosphere soil from cv Pequeña Enana or Gruesa and controls collected from adjacent sites, with the same agroecological conditions, without banana roots. To characterize the bacterial communities, the V3 and V4 variable regions of the 16S rRNA ribosomal gene were amplified, whereas the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region was used for the fungi present in the same samples. Libraries were sequenced with an Illumina MiSeq™ in paired ends with a 300-bp read length. For each sample, plant parasitic nematodes (PPN) and other nematodes were extracted from the soil, counted, and identified. Phytoparasitic nematodes were mostly found in banana rhizosphere. They included <i>Pratylenchus goodeyi</i>, present in northern farms, and <i>Helicotylenchus</i> spp., including <i>H. multicinctus</i>, found in both northern and southern farms. Metabarcoding data showed a direct effect of cropping on microbial communities, and latitude-related factors that separated northern and southern controls from banana rizosphere samples. Several fungal taxa known as nematode BCA were identified, with endophytes, mycorrhizal species, and obligate Rozellomycota endoparasites, almost only present in the banana samples. The dominant bacterial phyla were Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Planctomycetes, Bacteroidetes, Chloroflexi, and Acidobacteria. The ITS data showed several operational taxonomic units (OTUs) belonging to Sordariomycetes, including biocontrol agents, such as <i>Beauveria</i> spp., <i>Arthrobotrys</i> spp., <i>Pochonia chlamydosporia</i>, and <i>Metarhizium anisopliae</i>. Other taxa included <i>Trichoderma harzianum, Trichoderma longibrachiatum, Trichoderma virens</i>, and <i>Fusarium</i> spp., together with mycoparasites such as <i>Acrostalagmus luteoalbus</i>. However, only one <i>Dactylella</i> spp. showed a correlation with predatory nematodes. Differences among the nematode guilds were found, as phytoparasitic, free-living, and predatory nematode groups were correlated with specific subsets of other bacteria and fungi. Crop cultivation method and soil texture showed differences in taxa representations when considering other farm and soil variables. The data showed changes in the rhizosphere and soil microbiota related to trophic specialization and specific adaptations, affecting decomposers, beneficial endophytes, mycorrhizae, or BCA, and plant pathogens.
Project description:Nematodes represent a diverse and ubiquitous group of metazoans in terrestrial environments. They feed on bacteria, fungi, plants, other nematodes or parasitize a variety of animals and hence may be considered as active members of many food webs. Deadwood is a structural component of forest ecosystems which harbors many niches for diverse biota. As fungi and bacteria are among the most prominent decomposing colonizers of deadwood, we anticipated frequent and diverse nematode populations to co-occur in such ecosystems. However, knowledge about their ability to colonize this habitat is still limited. We applied DNA-based amplicon sequencing (metabarcoding) of the 18S rRNA gene to analyze nematode communities in sapwood and heartwood of decaying logs from 13 different tree species. We identified 247 nematode ASVs (amplicon sequence variants) from 27 families. Most of these identified families represent bacterial and fungal feeders. Their composition strongly depended on tree species identity in both wood compartments. While pH and water content were the only wood properties that contributed to nematodes' distribution, co-occurring fungal and prokaryotic (bacteria and archaea) α- and β-diversities were significantly related to nematode communities. By exploring thirteen different tree species, which exhibit a broad range of wood characteristics, this study provides first and comprehensive insights into nematode diversity in deadwood of temperate forests and indicates connectivity to other wood-inhabiting organisms.
Project description:Pasteuria spp. are endospore forming bacteria which act as natural antagonists to many of the most economically significant plant parasitic nematodes (PPNs). Highly species-specific nematode suppression may be observed in soils containing a sufficiently high density of Pasteuria spp. spores. This suppression is enacted by the bacteria via inhibition of root invasion and sterilization of the nematode host. Molecular methods for the detection of Pasteuria spp. from environmental DNA (eDNA) have been described; however, these methods are limited in both scale and in depth. We report the use of small subunit rRNA gene metabarcoding to profile Pasteuria spp. and nematode communities in parallel. We have investigated Pasteuria spp. population structure in Scottish soils using eDNA from two sources: soil extracted DNA from the second National Soil Inventory of Scotland (NSIS2); and nematode extracted DNA collected from farms in the East Scotland Farm Network (ESFN). We compared the Pasteuria spp. community culture to both nematode community structure and the physiochemical properties of soils. Our results indicate that Pasteuria spp. populations in Scottish soils are broadly dominated by two sequence variants. The first of these aligns with high identity to Pasteuria hartismeri, a species first described parasitizing Meloidogyne ardenensis, a nematode parasite of woody and perennial plants in northern Europe. The second aligns with a Pasteuria-like sequence which was first recovered from a farm near Edinburgh which was found to contain bacterial feeding nematodes and Pratylenchus spp. encumbered by Pasteuria spp. endospores. Further, soil carbon, moisture, bulk density, and pH showed a strong correlation with the Pasteuria spp. community composition. These results indicate that metabarcoding is appropriate for the sensitive, specific, and semi-quantitative profiling of Pasteuria species from eDNA.