Ability of Pseudoalteromonas tunicata to colonize natural biofilms and its effect on microbial community structure

Authors

  • Dhana Rao,

    1. School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Centre for Marine Biofouling and Bio-Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia
    2. Department of Biological Sciences, State University of New York at Binghamton, Binghamton, NY, USA
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  • Torben Skovhus,

    1. School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Centre for Marine Biofouling and Bio-Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia
    2. Chemistry and Water Technology, Danish Technological Institute, Århus, Denmark
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  • Niina Tujula,

    1. School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Centre for Marine Biofouling and Bio-Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia
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  • Carola Holmström,

    1. School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Centre for Marine Biofouling and Bio-Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia
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  • Ingela Dahllöf,

    1. Department of Marine Ecology, National Environment Research Institute, University of Århus, Århus, Denmark
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  • Jeremy S. Webb,

    1. School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Centre for Marine Biofouling and Bio-Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia
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  • Staffan Kjelleberg

    1. School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Centre for Marine Biofouling and Bio-Innovation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia
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  • Present address: Jeremy S. Webb, School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton, Southampton SO16 7PX, UK.

  • Editor: Patricia Sobecky

Correspondence: Staffan Kjelleberg, School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Centre for Marine Biofouling and Bio-Innovation, Biological Sciences Building, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia. Tel.: +61 2 9385 2102; fax: +61 2 9385 1779; e-mail: s.kjelleberg@unsw.edu.au

Abstract

We investigated the effectiveness of surface colonization by the epiphytic marine bacterium Pseudoalteromonas tunicata firstly on a complex biofilm community on glass slides, and secondly, on the epiphytic community of Ulva australis. The effectiveness of P. tunicata was compared with the performance of Phaeobacter sp. 2.10, also a marine epiphytic isolate in the U. australis colonization experiments. Pseudoalteromonas tunicata cells were able to colonize the glass slide community at densities found naturally in the water column (9.7 × 104 cells mL−1). However, P. tunicata was a poor invader of the epiphytic community on U. australis at densities of 106 cells mL−1. At densities of 108 cells mL−1, P. tunicata again exerted little impact on the epiphytic community. Phaeobacter sp. 2.10 was also a poor invader at lower densities, but was able to invade and become dominant at densities of 108 cells mL−1. Differences in the ability of P. tunicata and Phaeobacter sp. 2.10 to invade natural communities may be due to differences in the antibacterial compounds produced by the two species. These experiments suggest that epiphytic communities may have protective effects compared with inanimate surfaces.

Ancillary