Distinct Biogeography of Different Fungal Guilds and Their Associations With Plant Species Richness in Forest Ecosystems
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Dept Soil Water & Environm Sci
Keywordslatitudinal diversity gradient
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherFrontiers Media SA
CitationWang P, Chen Y, Sun Y, Tan S, Zhang S, Wang Z, Zhou J, Zhang G, Shu W, Luo C and Kuang J (2019) Distinct Biogeography of Different Fungal Guilds and Their Associations With Plant Species Richness in Forest Ecosystems. Front. Ecol. Evol. 7:216. doi: 10.3389/fevo.2019.00216
RightsCopyright © 2019 Wang, Chen, Sun, Tan, Zhang, Wang, Zhou, Zhang, Shu, Luo and Kuang. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
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AbstractPlant pathogens are increasingly considered as important agents in promoting plant coexistence, while plant symbionts like ectomycorrhizal fungi (EMF) can facilitate plant dominance by helping conspecific individuals to defend against plant pathogens. However, we know little about their relationships with plants at large scales. Here, using soil fungal data collected from 28 forest reserves across China, we explored the latitudinal diversity gradients of overall fungi and different fungal functional guilds, including putative plant pathogens, EMF, and saprotrophic fungi. We further linked the spatial patterns of alpha diversities of putative plant pathogens and EMF to the variation of plant species richness. We found that the relationships between latitude and alpha diversities of putative plant pathogens and EMF were region-dependent with sharp diversity shifts around the mid-latitude (similar to 35 degrees N), which differed from the unimodal diversity distributions of the overall and saprotrophic fungi. The variations in the diversities of putative plant pathogens and EMF were largely explained by the spatial regions (south vs. north/subtropical zone vs. temperate zone). Additionally, the alpha diversities of these two fungal guilds exhibited opposing trends across latitude. EMF could alter the relationship between diversities of putative plant pathogens and plants in the south/subtropical region, but not vice versa. We also found that the ratio of their alpha diversities (EMF to putative plant pathogens) was negatively related to plant species richness across the spatial regions (north to south), and explained similar to 10% of the variation of plant species richness. Overall, our findings suggest that plant-microbe interactions not only shape the local plant diversity but also may have non-negligible contributions to the large-scale patterns of plant diversity in forest ecosystems.
NoteOpen access journal
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsNational Natural Science Foundation of China [31600403, 31800422, 41673111, U1501232, 41622106]; Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province, China [2016A030312003]; U.S. National Science Foundation MacroSystems Biology program [NSF EF-1065844]; Candidates at Sun Yat-Sen University