A Comparison of Bacterial Communities Between Geographically Separated Corals Infected with White Pl...
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A Comparison of Bacterial Communities Between Geographically Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II. G.M. Cook, J. P. Rothenberger, M. Sikaroodi, E. Peters, P.M. Gillevet, R. B. Jonas Department of Environmental Science and Policy, George Mason University Tetra Tech, Inc.

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A Comparison of Bacterial Communities Between Geographically Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

G.M. Cook, J. P. Rothenberger, M. Sikaroodi,

E. Peters, P.M. Gillevet, R. B. Jonas

Department of Environmental Science and Policy, George Mason University

Tetra Tech, Inc.


Introduction
Introduction Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

  • Acquired samples of apparently healthy and diseased corals (Montastraea annularis) from the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Bahamas

  • Compared the microbial community composition of healthy and infected coral pairs

  • Microbial culturing, LH-PCR, molecular fingerprinting, and 16S rRNA sequencing


M. faveolata Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II, Andros Island, Bahamas.

July 29, 2002

Photo by: Dr. Robert Jonas


13.5 cm Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

M. faveolata, Andros Island, Bahamas.

August 18, 2002 (20 days after initial observation)

Photo by: Dr. Robert Jonas


M. faveolata Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II, Andros Island, Bahamas.

August 1, 2003 (one year after initial observation)

Photo by: Dr. Robert Jonas


Hypotheses
Hypotheses Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

  • That the causative agents are opportunistic pathogens normally present in the host or its environs rather than a novel, obligate pathogen;

  • That corals exhibiting WPII disease signs from different geographical regions harbor differing microbial communities in normal tissue and diseased tissue;

  • The WPII disease process is the result of a broad shift in the microbial community (dysbiosis).


Methodology
Methodology Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

Photo by: Dr. Robert Jonas

Divers sampling a colony of M. faveolata, LSI, Exumas, Bahamas


Lee stocking island exumas bahamas
Lee Stocking Island, Exumas, Bahamas Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

ggggg

X

X

X

Photo by: Dr. Robert Jonas


St croix u s virgin islands
St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

X

Photo by: Dr. Robert Jonas


VC2D & VC2HD Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II


VC7H Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II


Experimental design
Experimental Design Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

  • Two cores used for histological investigations

  • Three cores used for microbial & molecular investigations

1.6 cm

Photo By: Dr. Esther Peters

Photo By: Dr. Robert Jonas


OTU 1 Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II*

OTU 2 *

OTU 3 *

Relative Intensity

Size(bp)

Length Heterogeneity PCR

Fingerprinting

(LH-PCR)

27F

355R

Peak area ~ Abundance


Results
Results Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II


Fingerprint histogram
Fingerprint Histogram Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

* Active WPII


Fingerprint histogram1
Fingerprint Histogram Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

* Inactive WPII


Results conclusions
Results/Conclusions Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

  • The Virgin Island Control/Healthy community is not nearly as diverse as the Bahamas Control/Healthy community.

  • There is a shift from a low complexity (H, HD) to high complexity community (D) in VI samples.

  • There is a shift from a high complexity (H, HD) to low complexity community (D) in the Bahamas samples.


The clustering of diseased tissue d is different from healthy tissue hd and the control tissue h
The clustering of diseased tissue Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II(D) is different from healthy tissue (HD) and the control tissue (H).

The clustering of the healthy and control tissue from the VI (●) is different from the healthy and control tissue from the Bahamas (▲).

Axis 2


Results conclusions1
Results/Conclusions Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

  • WPII was inactive in VI samples.

  • Possibleetiological agent fingerprint, Aurantimonascoralicida (313.1 bp), was found only in the diseased tissue of Bahamian samples.

  • Control and healthy on diseased microbial community differs with geographical separation.

  • We’re not finished yet!


Acknowledgements
Acknowledgements Separated Corals Infected with White Plague Type II

Special thanks to:

J. Paige Rothenberger

Masoumeh Sikaroodi

Roslyn Cress and the Department of ESP

Perry Institute of Marine Science (PIMS)

National Underwater Research Program (NURP)

American Type Culture Collection (ATCC)

U.S. Fish and Wildlife

The people of St. Croix and the Bahamas

Photo by: Dr. Robert Jonas


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