Invertebrate-bacteria associations found in mammal carcasses in the deep NE Atlantic

Organic falls are the least studied reducing environments in the deep-sea. These ephemeral habitats, with their sulphide and lipid-rich nature due to decomposition, yield massive pulses of labile organic matter to the deep-sea environment and are thought to create an intermediate habitat between abyssal soft-sediments plains and those of vents and seeps.
Within the framework of the project CARCACE, which aims to study the deep-sea community response to intense pulses of organic falls and their importance as sulphide-rich habitat islands at the Atlantic Ocean, mammal carcasses were deployed in the Setubal Canyon (NE Atlantic) and collected 18 months later. By this time the sulphophilic stage, typically subsequent to the complete removal of tissue by scavengers, could already be observed with an associated chemoautotrophic assemblage. In this study we characterized the bacteria associated with two species (“Idas” like-mussels and Osedax sp.) collected from these experiments. Potential bacterial partners were characterized using comparative 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Additional bacterial genes (e.g. encoding 23S rRNA, adenosine 5′-hosphosulfate (APS) reductase) were also sequenced to better evaluate relatedness to other bathymodiolin and siboglinidae symbionts and evaluate their metabolic potential.
Results provide new insights into the diversity, biogeography, and role of symbiotic bacteria in metazoans from organic falls.

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First Name: 
Clara F.
Last Name: 
Rodrigues
Telephone: 
00351918280646
Affiliation: 
Departamento de Biologia & CESAM, Universidade de Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
First Name: 
Sébastien
Last Name: 
Duperron
Affiliation: 
UMR 7138 UPMC-IRD-MNHN-CNRS ‘Systématique, Adaptation et Evolution’, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, 75005 Paris, France
First Name: 
Marina R.
Last Name: 
Cunha
Affiliation: 
Departamento de Biologia & CESAM, Universidade de Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
First Name: 
Ana
Last Name: 
Hilário
Affiliation: 
Departamento de Biologia & CESAM, Universidade de Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
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Trophic relations (including symbiosis)
Abstract ID: 
CBE5-172