Assembly and succession of the phyllosphere microbiome and nutrient-cycling genes during plant community development in a glacier foreland

Jian Li, Ming Kang Jin, Lijie Huang, Zhan Feng Liu, Tao Wang, Rui Ying Chang, Michiel Op de Beeck, Hans Lambers, Dafeng Hui, Ke Qing Xiao, Qing Lin Chen, Jordi Sardans, Josep Peñuelas, Xiao Ru Yang, Yong Guan Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The phyllosphere, particularly the leaf surface of plants, harbors a diverse range of microbiomes that play a vital role in the functioning of terrestrial ecosystems. However, our understanding of microbial successions and their impact on functional genes during plant community development is limited. In this study, considering core and satellite microbial taxa, we characterized the phyllosphere microbiome and functional genes in various microhabitats (i.e., leaf litter, moss and plant leaves) across the succession of a plant community in a low-altitude glacier foreland. Our findings indicate that phyllosphere microbiomes and associated ecosystem stability increase during the succession of the plant community. The abundance of core taxa increased with plant community succession and was primarily governed by deterministic processes. In contrast, satellite taxa abundance decreased during plant community succession and was mainly governed by stochastic processes. The abundance of microbial functional genes (such as C, N, and P hydrolysis and fixation) in plant leaves generally increased during the plant community succession. However, in leaf litter and moss leaves, only a subset of functional genes (e.g., C fixation and degradation, and P mineralization) showed a tendency to increase with plant community succession. Ultimately, the community of both core and satellite taxa collaboratively influenced the characteristics of phyllosphere nutrient-cycling genes, leading to the diverse profiles and fluctuating abundance of various functional genes during plant community succession. These findings offer valuable insights into the phyllosphere microbiome and plant–microbe interactions during plant community development, advancing our understanding of the succession and functional significance of the phyllosphere microbial community.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108688
JournalEnvironment International
Volume187
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2024

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