Fungi are a ubiquitous component of marine systems, but their quantitative relevance, biodiversity and ecological role in benthic deep-sea ecosystems remain largely unexplored. In this study, we investigated fungal abundance, diversity and assemblage composition in two benthic deep-sea sites of the Ross Sea (Southern Ocean, Antarctica), characterized by different environmental conditions (i.e., temperature, salinity, trophic availability). Our results indicate that fungal abundance (estimated as the number of 18S rDNA copies g(-1)) varied by almost one order of magnitude between the two benthic sites, consistently with changes in sediment characteristics and trophic availability. The highest fungal richness (in terms of Amplicon Sequence Variants-ASVs) was encountered in the sediments characterized by the highest organic matter content, indicating potential control of trophic availability on fungal diversity. The composition of fungal assemblages was highly diverse between sites and within each site (similarity less than 10%), suggesting that differences in environmental and ecological characteristics occurring even at a small spatial scale can promote high turnover diversity. Overall, this study provides new insights on the factors influencing the abundance and diversity of benthic deep-sea fungi inhabiting the Ross Sea, and also paves the way for a better understanding of the potential responses of benthic deep-sea fungi inhabiting Antarctic ecosystems in light of current and future climate changes.

Local Environmental Conditions Promote High Turnover Diversity of Benthic Deep-Sea Fungi in the Ross Sea (Antarctica) / Barone, Giulio; Corinaldesi, Cinzia; Rastelli, Eugenio; Tangherlini, Michael; Varrella, Stefano; Danovaro, Roberto; Dell'Anno, Antonio. - In: JOURNAL OF FUNGI. - ISSN 2309-608X. - ELETTRONICO. - 8:1(2022), p. 65. [10.3390/jof8010065]

Local Environmental Conditions Promote High Turnover Diversity of Benthic Deep-Sea Fungi in the Ross Sea (Antarctica)

Barone, Giulio;Corinaldesi, Cinzia;Rastelli, Eugenio;Tangherlini, Michael;Varrella, Stefano;Danovaro, Roberto;Dell'Anno, Antonio
2022-01-01

Abstract

Fungi are a ubiquitous component of marine systems, but their quantitative relevance, biodiversity and ecological role in benthic deep-sea ecosystems remain largely unexplored. In this study, we investigated fungal abundance, diversity and assemblage composition in two benthic deep-sea sites of the Ross Sea (Southern Ocean, Antarctica), characterized by different environmental conditions (i.e., temperature, salinity, trophic availability). Our results indicate that fungal abundance (estimated as the number of 18S rDNA copies g(-1)) varied by almost one order of magnitude between the two benthic sites, consistently with changes in sediment characteristics and trophic availability. The highest fungal richness (in terms of Amplicon Sequence Variants-ASVs) was encountered in the sediments characterized by the highest organic matter content, indicating potential control of trophic availability on fungal diversity. The composition of fungal assemblages was highly diverse between sites and within each site (similarity less than 10%), suggesting that differences in environmental and ecological characteristics occurring even at a small spatial scale can promote high turnover diversity. Overall, this study provides new insights on the factors influencing the abundance and diversity of benthic deep-sea fungi inhabiting the Ross Sea, and also paves the way for a better understanding of the potential responses of benthic deep-sea fungi inhabiting Antarctic ecosystems in light of current and future climate changes.
2022
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11566/314609
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