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Fungus-growing ants use antibiotic-producing bacteria to control garden parasites
A new, third mutualist in this symbiosis is described, a filamentous bacterium (actinomycete) of the genus Streptomyces that produces antibiotics specifically targeted to suppress the growth of the specialized garden-parasite Escovopsis. Expand
The agricultural pathology of ant fungus gardens.
The increased virulence of pathogens associated with ancient asexual cultivars suggests an evolutionary cost to cultivar clonality, perhaps resulting from slower evolutionary rates of cultivars in the coevolutionary race with their pathogens. Expand
Northern forestry and carabids: the case for concern about old-growth species
This paper aims to demonstrate the efforts towards in-situ applicability of EMMARM, as to provide real-time information about the timber-farming activities of the Northern Forest Service in Alberta. Expand
Ancient Tripartite Coevolution in the Attine Ant-Microbe Symbiosis
Phylogenetic analyses indicate that this long coevolutionary history includes a third symbiont lineage: specialized microfungal parasites of the ants' fungus gardens, intensifying continuous coadaptation between symbionts in a tripartite arms race. Expand
Weeding and grooming of pathogens in agriculture by ants
  • C. Currie, A. Stuart
  • Biology, Medicine
  • Proceedings of the Royal Society of London…
  • 22 May 2001
Ants' ability to remove alien microbes physically by infecting Atta colombica gardens with the generalist pathogen Trichoderma viride and the specialist pathogen Escovopsis was examined, suggesting this specialized pathogen has evolved counter-adaptations in order to overcome the sanitary defences of the ants. Expand
An Insect Herbivore Microbiome with High Plant Biomass-Degrading Capacity
It is revealed that the fungus garden microbiome of leaf-cutter ants is composed of a diverse community of bacteria with high plant biomass-degrading capacity, indicating evolutionary convergence of plant biomass degrading potential between two important herbivorous animals. Expand
The Complete Genome Sequence of Fibrobacter succinogenes S85 Reveals a Cellulolytic and Metabolic Specialist
The F. succinogenes genome reveals a bacterium that specializes in cellulose as its sole energy source, and provides insight into a novel strategy for cellulose degradation. Expand
Experimental evidence of a tripartite mutualism: bacteria protect ant fungus gardens from specialized parasites
It is suggested that mutualisms between antibiotic-producing microbes and higher organisms may be common associations that are mostly overlooked and that the role of symbionts in reducing the impact of parasites is likely an important aspect in the cost-benefit assessment of mutualisms. Expand
Draft genome of the globally widespread and invasive Argentine ant (Linepithema humile)
  • Christopher D. Smith, A. Zimin, +47 authors N. Tsutsui
  • Biology, Medicine
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • 31 January 2011
The draft genome sequence of a particularly widespread and well-studied species, the invasive Argentine ant, is reported, which was accomplished using a combination of 454 and Illumina sequencing and community-based funding rather than federal grant support. Expand
The Origin of the Attine Ant-Fungus Mutualism
The attine ant-fungus mutualism probably arose from adventitious interactions with fungi that grew on walls of nests built in leaf litter, or from a system of fungal myrmecochory in which specialized fungi relied on ants for dispersal and in which the ants fortuitously vectored these fungi from parent to offspring nests prior to a true fungicultural stage. Expand