Abstract Formatting Guidelines:
1. Please submit your abstract as a Word Document with this form.
2. Use Times New Roman font, size 12 for all text
3. Bold Face your abstract title and center justify the text.
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5. The body of the abstract should not exceed 300 words and should not include figures, tables, or references. Left justify the text.
Please follow the example below.
Bacterial community stability and heat stress responses in Aiptasia
Sophia MacVittie and Cory J. Krediet
Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, Florida
The relationship between Anthozoans and their symbionts is a topic being carefully studied in order to better understand the process of coral bleaching and how this symbiosis is impacted by rising ocean temperatures. The anemone Aiptasia (Exaiptasia pallida) has become a model organism to better understand the relationship between corals and their algal symbionts (in the genus Symbiodinium). The microbial portion of the holobiont and the role that these organisms play in the thermal tolerance of these organisms is still understudied. This project looked at two distinct strains of Aiptasia, CC7 which is endemic to Florida, and H2 which was collected in Hawaii and is found globally. We have already found evidence for basal differences in the bacterial communities of the two strains. This study aimed to measure the changes in these microbial communities over time, as well as to analyze the impact of mild heat stress on the holobiont. This study also allows for investigation of the impact of Symbiodinium association by looking at two sets of CC7 anemones, one associated with its endogenous Symbiodinium (CC7-Endo), and the other associated with clade B Symbiodinium normally associated with H2 anemones (CC7-SSB01). Using T-RFLP analysis, we analyzed the bacterial communities at time zero as well as at one-week of incubation at either 25°C (control) or 32°C (experimental). Using T-rex software we are analyzing changes in overall community composition over time and in response to stress for all strains tested. Additionally, we will correlate changes in the microbial community composition with Symbiodinium density in order to understand whether community changes impact the number of algae that the host retains.