The stability of mutualistic interactions is likely to be affected by the genetic diversity of symbionts that compete for the same functional niche. Fungus-growing (attine) ants have multiple complex symbioses and thus provide ample opportunities to address questions of symbiont specificity and diversity. Among the partners are Actinobacteria of the genus Pseudonocardia that are maintained on the ant cuticle to produce antibiotics, primarily against a fungal parasite of the mutualistic gardens. The symbiosis has been assumed to ...
Molecular Ecology, 2013, Vol 22, Issue 16, p. 4307-4321
454 pyrosequencing; attine ant mutualism; bacterial community; Pseudonocardia