Insect gut microbiology and symbiosis

Prof. Dr. Andreas Brune


Research Area

Termite guts are tiny bioreactors converting lignocellulose to microbial fermentation products that fuel the metabolism of the host. My research group studies the role of the gut microbiota in the symbiotic digestion of wood, focusing on the structure and functions of the gut microbiome, the biology of the prokaryotic and eukaryotic symbionts and their interactions, and the evolution of the intestinal microbial community. Other aspects are the microbial processes in the guts of humivorous soil macrofauna, such as soil-feeding termites, scarab beetle larvae, and millipedes.

Recent publications:

Radek, R., Platt, K., Öztas, D., Šobotník, J., Sillam-Dussès, D., Hanus, R., Brune, A. (2023) New insights into the coevolutionary history of termites and their gut flagellates: Description of Retractinympha glossotermitis gen. nov. sp. nov. (Retractinymphidae fam. nov.). Front. Ecol. Evol. 11: 1111484. (Online)

Brune, A., Mies, U.S. (2023) Elusimicrobiota. In: Bergey's Manual of Systematics of Archaea and Bacteria (W.B. Whitman, F. Rainey, P. Kämpfer, M. Trujillo, J. Chun, P. DeVos, B. Hedlund and S. Dedysh, eds.). Wiley Online Library, in press.

Song, Y., Pfeiffer, F., Radek, R., Hearne, C., Hervé, V., Brune, A. (2022) Comparative analysis of Brucepastera parasyntrophica gen. nov., sp. nov. and Teretinema zuelzerae gen. nov., comb. nov. (Treponemataceae) reveals the importance of interspecies hydrogen transfer in the energy metabolism of spirochetes. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 88: e00503-22. (Online)

Brune, A., Song, Y., Oren, A., Paster, B.J. (2022) A new family for 'termite gut treponemes': Description of Breznakiellaceae fam. nov., Gracilinema caldarium gen. nov., comb. nov., Leadbettera azotonutricia gen. nov., comb. nov., Helmutkoenigia isoptericolens gen. nov., comb. nov., and Zuelzera stenostrepta gen. nov., comb. nov., and proposal of Rectinemataceae fam. nov. Int. J. Syst. Evol. Microbiol. 72: 5439. (Online)

Arora, J., Kinjo, Y., Šobotník, J., Bucek, A., Clitheroe, C., Stiblik, P., Roisin, Y., Žifcáková, L., Park, Y.C., Kim, K.Y., Sillam-Dussès, D., Hervé, V., Lo, N., Tokuda, G., Brune, A., Bourguignon, T. (2022) The functional evolution of termite gut microbiota. Microbiome 10: 78. (Online)

Complete publication list

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