Metaorganisms as the new frontier

Bosch, T. C. G. and McFall-Ngai, M. J. (2011) Metaorganisms as the new frontier Zoology, 114 (4). pp. 185-190. DOI 10.1016/j.zool.2011.04.001.

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Because it appears that almost all organisms are part of an interdependent metaorganism, an understanding of the underlying host-microbe species associations, and of evolution and molecular underpinnings, has become the new frontier in zoology. The availability of novel high-throughput sequencing methods, together with the conceptual understanding that advances mostly originate at the intersection of traditional disciplinary boundaries, enable biologists to dissect the mechanisms that control the interdependent associations of species. In this review article, we outline some of the issues in inter-species interactions, present two case studies illuminating the necessity of interfacial research when addressing complex and fundamental zoological problems, and show that an interdisciplinary approach that seeks to understand co-evolved multi-species relationships will connect genomes, phenotypes, ecosystems and the evolutionary forces that have shaped them. We hope that this article inspires other collaborations of a similar nature on the diverse landscape commonly referred to as "zoology". (C) 2011 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Biocenosis Evolution Host-microbe associations Inter-species interactions Symbiosis coral oculina-patagonica animal development hologenome theory bacteria symbionts evolution aphids cells host microorganisms
Research affiliation: Kiel University
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1016/j.zool.2011.04.001
ISSN: 0944-2006
Date Deposited: 01 Nov 2012 05:00
Last Modified: 01 Nov 2012 05:00

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