All Publications

  • Manipulation of the seagrass-associated microbiome reduces disease severity ENVIRONMENTAL MICROBIOLOGY Graham, O. J., Adamczyk, E. M., Schenk, S., Dawkins, P., Burke, S., Chei, E., Cisz, K., Dayal, S., Elstner, J., Hausner, A., Hughes, T., Manglani, O., McDonald, M., Mikles, C., Poslednik, A., Vinton, A., Wegener Parfrey, L., Harvell, C. 2024: e16582


    Host-associated microbes influence host health and function and can be a first line of defence against infections. While research increasingly shows that terrestrial plant microbiomes contribute to bacterial, fungal, and oomycete disease resistance, no comparable experimental work has investigated marine plant microbiomes or more diverse disease agents. We test the hypothesis that the eelgrass (Zostera marina) leaf microbiome increases resistance to seagrass wasting disease. From field eelgrass with paired diseased and asymptomatic tissue, 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing revealed that bacterial composition and richness varied markedly between diseased and asymptomatic tissue in one of the two years. This suggests that the influence of disease on eelgrass microbial communities may vary with environmental conditions. We next experimentally reduced the eelgrass microbiome with antibiotics and bleach, then inoculated plants with Labyrinthula zosterae, the causative agent of wasting disease. We detected significantly higher disease severity in eelgrass with a native microbiome than an experimentally reduced microbiome. Our results over multiple experiments do not support a protective role of the eelgrass microbiome against L. zosterae. Further studies of these marine host-microbe-pathogen relationships may continue to show new relationships between plant microbiomes and diseases.

    View details for DOI 10.1111/1462-2920.16582

    View details for Web of Science ID 001138461400001

    View details for PubMedID 38195072

  • Impacts of marine heatwaves on top predator distributions are variable but predictable. Nature communications Welch, H., Savoca, M. S., Brodie, S., Jacox, M. G., Muhling, B. A., Clay, T. A., Cimino, M. A., Benson, S. R., Block, B. A., Conners, M. G., Costa, D. P., Jordan, F. D., Leising, A. W., Mikles, C. S., Palacios, D. M., Shaffer, S. A., Thorne, L. H., Watson, J. T., Holser, R. R., Dewitt, L., Bograd, S. J., Hazen, E. L. 2023; 14 (1): 5188


    Marine heatwaves cause widespread environmental, biological, and socio-economic impacts, placing them at the forefront of 21st-century management challenges. However, heatwaves vary in intensity and evolution, and a paucity of information on how this variability impacts marine species limits our ability to proactively manage for these extreme events. Here, we model the effects of four recent heatwaves (2014, 2015, 2019, 2020) in the Northeastern Pacific on the distributions of 14 top predator species of ecological, cultural, and commercial importance. Predicted responses were highly variable across species and heatwaves, ranging from near total loss of habitat to a two-fold increase. Heatwaves rapidly altered political bio-geographies, with up to 10% of predicted habitat across all species shifting jurisdictions during individual heatwaves. The variability in predicted responses across species and heatwaves portends the need for novel management solutions that can rapidly respond to extreme climate events. As proof-of-concept, we developed an operational dynamic ocean management tool that predicts predator distributions and responses to extreme conditions in near real-time.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41467-023-40849-y

    View details for PubMedID 37669922

    View details for PubMedCentralID 6329840

  • Evolutionary divergence and adaptive capacity in morphologically distinct song sparrow subspecies CONSERVATION GENETICS Mikles, C. S., Arcese, P., Lovette, I. J., Aguillon, S. M., Chan, Y. L., Benham, P. M., Carbeck, K., Walsh, J. 2023
  • Seasonal and diel habitat use of blue marlin Makaira nigricans in the North Atlantic Ocean ICES JOURNAL OF MARINE SCIENCE Andrzejaczek, S., Mikles, C. S., Dale, J. J., Castleton, M., Block, B. A. 2023
  • Land-dependent marine species face climate-driven impacts on land and at sea MARINE ECOLOGY PROGRESS SERIES Blondin, H. E., Armstrong, K. C., Hazen, E. L., Oestreich, W. K., Santos, B. S., Haulsee, D. E., Mikles, C. S., Knight, C. J., Bennett, A. E., Crowder, L. B. 2022; 699: 181-198

    View details for DOI 10.3354/meps14174

    View details for Web of Science ID 000919294900012