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Inside the guts of the city

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

Ondertitel:urban-induced alterations of the gut microbiota in a wild passerine
Urbanisation represents one of the most radical forms of terrestrial land use change and has been shown to lead to alterations in ecosystem functioning and community dynamics and changes in individual phenotypic traits. While the recent surge in microbiome studies has brought about a paradigm shift by which individuals cannot truly be considered independently of the bacterial communities they host, the role of gut microbiota in organismal response to human-induced environmental change is still scarcely studied. Here, we applied a metabarcoding approach to examine the impact of urbanisation on the gut microbiota of Passer domesticus. We found urbanisation to be associated to lower microbiota species diversity, modifications in taxonomic composition and community structure, and changes in functional composition. The strength of these relationships, however, depended on the spatial scale and season at which they were considered. Such spatio-temporal effect suggests that urbanisation may dampen the natural seasonal variation of the gut microbiota observed in more pristine habitats, potentially influencing the fitness of urban organisms. Our results hence shed light on a hitherto little considered perspective, i.e. that the negative effects of urbanisation on city-dwelling organisms may extend to their microbiomes, causing potential dysbioses.
Tijdschrift: The science of the total environment
ISSN: 0048-9697
Volume: 612
Pagina's: 1276 - 1286
Trefwoorden:A1 Journal article
BOF-publication weight:3
CSS-citation score:2
Authors from:Higher Education