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Environmental Microbiology

Rotem Bartuv, 
Maria Berihu, 
Shlomit Medina, 
Shoshana Salim, 
Oleg Feygenberg, 
Adi Faigenboim-Doron, 
V. Yeka Zhimo, 
Ahmed Abdelfattah,
Edoardo Piombo, 
Michael Wisniewski, 
Shiri Freilich, 
Samir Droby

Fruits harbour abundant and diverse microbial communities that protect them from post-harvest pathogens. Identification of functional traits associated with a given microbiota can provide a better understanding of their potential influence. Here, we focused on the epiphytic microbiome of apple fruit. We suggest that shotgun metagenomic data can indicate specific functions carried out by different groups and provide information on their potential impact. Samples were collected from the surface of ‘Golden Delicious’ apples from four orchards that differ in their geographic location and management practice. Approximately 1 million metagenes were predicted based on a high-quality assembly. Functional profiling of the microbiome of fruits from orchards differing in their management practice revealed a functional shift in the microbiota. The organic orchard microbiome was enriched in pathways involved in plant defence activities; the conventional orchard microbiome was enriched in pathways related to the synthesis of antibiotics. The functional significance of the variations was explored using microbial network modelling algorithms to reveal the metabolic role of specific phylogenetic groups. The analysis identified several associations supported by other published studies. For example, the analysis revealed the nutritional dependencies of the Capnodiales group, including the Alternaria pathogen, on aromatic compounds.

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Functional analysis of the apple fruit microbiome based on shotgun metagenomic sequencing of conventional and organic orchard samples

Rotem Bartuv, 
Maria Berihu, 
Shlomit Medina, 
Shoshana Salim, 
Oleg Feygenberg, 
Adi Faigenboim-Doron, 
V. Yeka Zhimo, 
Ahmed Abdelfattah,
Edoardo Piombo, 
Michael Wisniewski, 
Shiri Freilich, 
Samir Droby

Functional analysis of the apple fruit microbiome based on shotgun metagenomic sequencing of conventional and organic orchard samples

Fruits harbour abundant and diverse microbial communities that protect them from post-harvest pathogens. Identification of functional traits associated with a given microbiota can provide a better understanding of their potential influence. Here, we focused on the epiphytic microbiome of apple fruit. We suggest that shotgun metagenomic data can indicate specific functions carried out by different groups and provide information on their potential impact. Samples were collected from the surface of ‘Golden Delicious’ apples from four orchards that differ in their geographic location and management practice. Approximately 1 million metagenes were predicted based on a high-quality assembly. Functional profiling of the microbiome of fruits from orchards differing in their management practice revealed a functional shift in the microbiota. The organic orchard microbiome was enriched in pathways involved in plant defence activities; the conventional orchard microbiome was enriched in pathways related to the synthesis of antibiotics. The functional significance of the variations was explored using microbial network modelling algorithms to reveal the metabolic role of specific phylogenetic groups. The analysis identified several associations supported by other published studies. For example, the analysis revealed the nutritional dependencies of the Capnodiales group, including the Alternaria pathogen, on aromatic compounds.

Scientific Publication
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