A Database to Understand How Microbes Respond to Stress
The Microbiome Stress Project (based at Duke University) is being developed to identify sensitive and resistant microbes subjected to a comprehensive range of natural and anthropogenic stressors across various host and environmental habitats.
The project objectives are to identify how microbial communities change in response to:
(1) One stressor in one environment: How consistent are microbiome responses to the same stressor within the same environment?
(2) A range of stressors within an environment: Are there common microbiome responses to different stressors within the same environment?
(3) One stressor across environments: Does a given stressor impose consistent effects on microbiomes across multiple environments, including host-associated and free-living systems?
(4) General trends of microbiome stressor responses: Are there general impacts of stressors on microbiomes across all environments?
With this database, we hope to identify indicator microbial taxa to specific stressors and improve our understanding of the natural history of microorganisms.
The first publication of the Microbiome Stress Project has been published in Frontiers in Microbiology (Rocca et al. 2019). It presents the objectives and the methodology of the project, as well as a pilot meta-analysis.