Metabolic co-dependence drives the evolutionarily ancient Hydra–Chlorella symbiosis.

Hamada, Mayuko, Schröder, Katja, Bathia, Jay, Kürn, Ulrich, Fraune, Sebastian, Khalturina, Mariia, Khalturin, Konstantin, Shinzato, Chuya, Satoh, Nori and Bosch, T. C. G. (2018) Metabolic co-dependence drives the evolutionarily ancient Hydra–Chlorella symbiosis. Open Access eLife, 7 . DOI 10.7554/eLife.35122.

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Many multicellular organisms rely on symbiotic associations for support of metabolic activity, protection, or energy. Understanding the mechanisms involved in controlling such interactions remains a major challenge. In an unbiased approach we identified key players that control the symbiosis between Hydra viridissima and its photosynthetic symbiont Chlorella sp. A99. We discovered significant up-regulation of Hydra genes encoding a phosphate transporter and glutamine synthetase suggesting regulated nutrition supply between host and symbionts. Interestingly, supplementing the medium with glutamine temporarily supports in vitro growth of the otherwise obligate symbiotic Chlorella, indicating loss of autonomy and dependence on the host. Genome sequencing of Chlorella sp. A99 revealed a large number of amino acid transporters and a degenerated nitrate assimilation pathway, presumably as consequence of the adaptation to the host environment. Our observations portray ancient symbiotic interactions as a codependent partnership in which exchange of nutrients appears to be the primary driving force.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Evolutionary Biology, Hydra, Chlorella, Symbiosis, Genome, Nitrogen, metabolism
Research affiliation: Kiel University > Kiel Marine Science
OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence
Kiel University
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.7554/eLife.35122
ISSN: 2050-084X
Projects: Future Ocean
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2018 10:40
Last Modified: 13 Mar 2019 11:03

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