Phylogeny and fitness of Vibrio fischeri from the light organs of Euprymna scolopes in two Oahu, Hawaii populations

ISME J. 2012 Feb;6(2):352-62. doi: 10.1038/ismej.2011.92. Epub 2011 Jul 21.

Abstract

The evolutionary relationship among Vibrio fischeri isolates obtained from the light organs of Euprymna scolopes collected around Oahu, Hawaii, were examined in this study. Phylogenetic reconstructions based on a concatenation of fragments of four housekeeping loci (recA, mdh, katA, pyrC) identified one monophyletic group ('Group-A') of V. fischeri from Oahu. Group-A V. fischeri strains could also be identified by a single DNA fingerprint type. V. fischeri strains with this fingerprint type had been observed to be at a significantly higher abundance than other strains in the light organs of adult squid collected from Maunalua Bay, Oahu, in 2005. We hypothesized that these previous observations might be related to a growth/survival advantage of the Group-A strains in the Maunalua Bay environments. Competition experiments between Group-A strains and non-Group-A strains demonstrated an advantage of the former in colonizing juvenile Maunalua Bay hosts. Growth and survival assays in Maunalua Bay seawater microcosms revealed a reduced fitness of Group-A strains relative to non-Group-A strains. From these results, we hypothesize that there may exist trade-offs between growth in the light organ and in seawater environments for local V. fischeri strains from Oahu. Alternatively, Group-A V. fischeri may represent an example of rapid, evolutionarily significant, specialization of a horizontally transmitted symbiont to a local host population.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aliivibrio fischeri / classification*
  • Aliivibrio fischeri / genetics
  • Aliivibrio fischeri / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Bays
  • DNA Fingerprinting
  • Decapodiformes / growth & development
  • Decapodiformes / microbiology*
  • Genes, Bacterial / genetics
  • Hawaii
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phylogeny*
  • Recombination, Genetic
  • Symbiosis / physiology

Associated data

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