Metagenomics and the niche concept

By jpeza - Posted on 19 Octubre 2009

Fecha Publicación: 
18 Abr 2008
Nombre de Revista: 
Datos del paper
Autor Principal: 
Diana Marco
Página Inicial: 
Página Final: 

The metagenomics approach has revolutionised
the fields of bacterial diversity, ecology and evolution, as
well as derived applications like bioremediation and
obtaining bioproducts. A further associated conceptual
change has also occurred since in the metagenomics
methodology the species is no longer the unit of study, but
rather partial genome arrangements or even isolated genes.
In spite of this, concepts coming from ecological and
evolutionary fields traditionally centred on the species, like
the concept of niche, are still being applied without further
revision. A reformulation of the niche concept is necessary
to deal with the new operative and epistemological challenges
posed by the metagenomics approach. To contribute
to this end, I review past and present uses of the niche
concept in ecology and in microbiological studies, showing
that a new, updated definition need to be used in the context
of the metagenomics. Finally, I give some insights into
a more adequate conceptual background for the utilisation
of the niche concept in metagenomic studies. In particular,
I raise the necessity of including the microbial genetic
background as another variable into the niche space

Dirección del Autor: 

Laboratorio de Ecologı´a, Area de Produccio´n Orga´nica,
Facultad de Ciencias Agropecuarias,
Universidad Nacional de Co´rdoba, Ciudad Universitaria,
Av. Valparaiso s/n, Co´rdoba, CP 5000, CC 508, Argentina

Metagenomics Niche concept Ecological unit Operational genetic functional units
[file] Theory_Bioscience_2008_127_241-247.pdf188.75 KB