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First Author: LIU Min

Invasion by exotic plant species can alter ecosystem function and reduce native plant diversity, but relatively little is known about their effects on belowground microbial communities. Here we investigated the effects of exotic cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) invasion on the distribution of soil bacterial communities in a mangrove nature reserve of the Jiulong River Estuary, southeast China using high-throughput sequencing of 16S rRNA gene and multivariate statistical analysis. Our results showed that S. alterniflora invasion altered soil properties, and significantly increased soil bacterial taxa richness, primarily by stimulating an increase in conditionally rare or rare taxa, and changes in community composition and function. Abundant, conditionally rare and rare subcommunities exhibited similar response patterns to environment changes, with both conditionally rare and rare taxa showing a stronger response than abundant ones. Habitat generalists were detected among abundant, conditionally rare and rare taxa, whereas habitat specialists were only identified among conditionally rare taxa and rare taxa. In addition, we found that vegetation was the key factor driving these patterns. However, our comparative analysis indicated that both environmental selection, and neutral process, significantly contributed to soil bacterial community assembly. These results could improve the understanding of the microbial processes and mechanisms of cordgrass invasion, and offer empirical data of use in the restoration and management of the mangrove wetlands.

Contact the author: YANG Jun
Page Number: 2503
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PubYear: 2017 Dec 15
Volume: 8
The full text link: https://doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2017.02503