University of Oulu

Lavrinienko, A., Mappes, T., Tukalenko, E., Mousseau, T., Møller, A., Knight, R., Morton, J., Thompson, L., Watts, P. (2018) Environmental radiation alters the gut microbiome of the bank vole Myodes glareolus. Isme journal, 12 (11), 2801-2806. doi:10.1038/s41396-018-0214-x

Environmental radiation alters the gut microbiome of the bank vole Myodes glareolus

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Author: Lavrinienko, Anton1; Mappes, Tapio2; Tukalenko, Eugene2,3;
Organizations: 1Department of Ecology and Genetics, University of Oulu, 90014, Oulu, Finland
2Department of Biological and Environmental Science, University of Jyväskylä, 40014, Jyväskylä, Finland
3Institute of Biology and Medicine, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Kyiv, 03022, Ukraine
4Department of Biological Sciences, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, 29208, USA
5Ecologie Systématique Evolution, Université Paris-Sud, CNRS, AgroParisTech, Université Paris-Saclay, 91405, Orsay Cedex, France
6Department of Pediatrics, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA, 92037, USA
7Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA, 92037, USA
8Center for Microbiome Innovation, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA, 92037, USA
9Department of Biological Sciences and Northern Gulf Institute, University of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, MS, USA
10Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, stationed at Southwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, La Jolla, CA, USA
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Springer Nature, 2018
Publish Date: 2019-07-04


Gut microbiota composition depends on many factors, although the impact of environmental pollution is largely unknown. We used amplicon sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes to quantify whether anthropogenic radionuclides at Chernobyl (Ukraine) impact the gut microbiome of the bank vole Myodes glareolus. Exposure to elevated levels of environmental radionuclides had no detectable effect on the gut community richness but was associated with an almost two-fold increase in the Firmicutes:Bacteroidetes ratio. Animals inhabiting uncontaminated areas had remarkably similar gut communities irrespective of their proximity to the nuclear power plant. Hence, samples could be classified to high-radiation or low-radiation sites based solely on microbial community with > 90% accuracy. Radiation-associated bacteria had distinct inferred functional profiles, including pathways involved in degradation, assimilation and transport of carbohydrates, xenobiotics biodegradation, and DNA repair. Our results suggest that exposure to environmental radionuclides significantly alters vertebrate gut microbiota.

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Series: The ISME journal
ISSN: 1751-7362
ISSN-E: 1751-7370
ISSN-L: 1751-7362
Volume: 12
Issue: 11
Pages: 2801 - 2806
DOI: 10.1038/s41396-018-0214-x
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
Funding: The project was funded by the Academy of Finland (project numbers 287153 and 268670, to PCW and TM) and by an open-research doctoral program award (to AL) from the University of Oulu Graduate School. Additional support to TAM was provided by the Samuel Freeman Charitable Trust and by the Samuel Lawrence Foundation to LRT. JTM was supported under NSF-GRFP DGE-1144086.
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 287153
Detailed Information: 287153 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
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