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Metabolic potential of fungus-garden microbiomes of Attini ants

Grant number: 15/16415-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): November 01, 2015
Effective date (End): May 31, 2017
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Microbiology - Applied Microbiology
Principal Investigator:André Rodrigues
Grantee:Mariana de Oliveira Barcoto
Host Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Rio Claro. Rio Claro , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:13/50954-0 - Novel therapeutic agents from the bacterial symbionts of Brazilian invertebrates, AP.BTA.TEM
Associated scholarship(s):16/02767-5 - Metabolic potential of bacterial microbiomes from fungus gardens of Attini ants, BE.EP.MS


Fungus-growing ants in the tribe Attini maintain a mutualistic relationship with fungi cultivated for food, in a structure named "fungus garden". This substrate harbors a complex microbiome, involving bacteria, yeasts and filamentous fungi. Like other microbiomes, the interaction between microorganisms and the environmental pressure determine the diversity of chemical compounds produced by microorganisms involved in the consortium, including secondary metabolites with therapeutic properties. Here, we aim to compare the metabolic potential in fungus garden microbiomes of two fungiculture systems practiced by fungus-growing ants. Through metagenomics profiling, we will compare the functional aspects of microbiomes associated with fungus garden in the lower and the leafcutter ant fungicultures. This study will allow the determination of genes involved in natural products of therapeutic interest. In addition, the results will build knowledge of the ant-fungus symbiosis, through the bacterial community role in the different fungiculture systems.

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
BARCOTO, MARIANA O.; CARLOS-SHANLEY, CAMILA; FAN, HUAN; FERRO, MILENE; NAGAMOTO, NILSON S.; BACCI, JR., MAURICIO; CURRIE, CAMERON R.; RODRIGUES, ANDRE. Fungus-growing insects host a distinctive microbiota apparently adapted to the fungiculture environment. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, v. 10, n. 1, . (12/25299-6, 15/16415-0, 19/03746-0, 16/02767-5, 13/50954-0, 17/04824-9)
Academic Publications
(References retrieved automatically from State of São Paulo Research Institutions)
BARCOTO, Mariana de Oliveira. Fungus-growing insects host a convergent microbiome with functional similarities to other lignocellulose-feeding insects. 2017. Master's Dissertation - Universidade Estadual Paulista (Unesp).

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