Chemical warfare between microbes promotes biodiversity

T. Czárán, Rolf F. Hoekstra, Ludo Pagie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

313 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Evolutionary processes generating biodiversity and ecological mechanisms maintaining biodiversity seem to be diverse themselves. Conventional explanations of biodiversity such as niche differentiation, density-dependent predation pressure, or habitat heterogeneity seem satisfactory to explain diversity in communities of macrobial organisms such as higher plants and animals. For a long time the often high diversity among microscopic organisms in seemingly uniform environments, the famous "paradox of the plankton," has been difficult to understand. The biodiversity in bacterial communities has been shown to be sometimes orders of magnitudes higher than the diversity of known macrobial systems. Based on a spatially explicit game theoretical model with multiply cyclic dominance structures, we suggest that antibiotic interactions within microbial communities may be very effective in maintaining diversity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)786-790
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume99
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 22 2002

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Chemical Warfare
Biodiversity
Microbial Interactions
Plankton
Ecosystem
Theoretical Models
Anti-Bacterial Agents
Pressure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • General

Cite this

Chemical warfare between microbes promotes biodiversity. / Czárán, T.; Hoekstra, Rolf F.; Pagie, Ludo.

In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Vol. 99, No. 2, 22.01.2002, p. 786-790.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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