Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Integration of culture-dependent and independent methods provides a more coherent picture of the pig gut microbiome.

Abstract

Bacterial communities resident in the hindgut of pigs, have profound impacts on health and disease. Investigations into the pig microbiome have utilized either culture-dependent, or far more commonly, culture-independent techniques using next generation sequencing. We contend that a combination of both approaches generates a more coherent view of microbiome composition. In this study, we surveyed the microbiome of Tamworth breed and feral pigs through the integration high throughput culturing and shotgun metagenomics. A single culture medium was used for culturing. Selective screens were added to the media to increase culture diversity. In total, 46 distinct bacterial species were isolated from the Tamworth and feral samples. Selective screens successfully shifted the diversity of bacteria on agar plates. Tamworth pigs are highly dominated by Bacteroidetes primarily composed of the genus Prevotella whereas feral samples were more diverse with almost equal proportions of Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes. The combination of metagenomics and culture techniques facilitated a greater retrieval of annotated genes than either method alone. The single medium based pig microbiota library we report is a resource to better understand pig gut microbial ecology and function. It allows for assemblage of defined bacterial communities for studies in bioreactors or germfree animal models.