The sponge-associated microbial community contributes to the overall health and adaptive capacity of the sponge holobiont. This community is regulated by the environment and the immune system of the host. However, little is known about the effect of environmental stress on the regulation of host immune functions and how this may, in turn, affect sponge–microbe interactions. In this study, we compared the bacterial diversity and immune repertoire of the demosponge, Neopetrosia compacta, and the calcareous sponge, Leucetta chagosensis, under varying levels of acidification and warming stress based on climate scenarios predicted for 2100. Neopetrosia compacta harbors a diverse microbial community and possesses a rich repertoire of scavenger receptors while L. chagosensis has a less diverse microbiome and an expanded range of pattern recognition receptors and immune response-related genes. Upon exposure to RCP 8.5 conditions, the microbiome composition and host transcriptome of N. compacta remained stable, which correlated with high survival (75%). In contrast, tissue necrosis and low survival (25%) of L. chagosensis was accompanied by microbial community shifts and downregulation of host immune-related pathways. Meta-analysis of microbiome diversity and immunological repertoire across poriferan classes further highlights the importance of host–microbe interactions in predicting the fate of sponges under future ocean conditions.
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Raw sequence data from this study are accessible through the NCBI Sequence Read Archive under BioProject PRJNA689294. The datasets we generated and analyzed are available in Figshare (https://figshare.com/projects/Sponge_holobionts_under_future_ocean_conditions/95796).
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We thank Francis Kenith Adolfo, Robert Valenzuela, and Ronald De Guzman for field and hatchery assistance and staff of the Bolinao Marine Laboratory for logistical support. This study was funded by the Department of Science and Technology Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (QMSR-MRRD-MEC-295-1449) to CC.
The authors declare no competing interests.
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Posadas, N., Baquiran, J.I.P., Nada, M.A.L. et al. Microbiome diversity and host immune functions influence survivorship of sponge holobionts under future ocean conditions. ISME J 16, 58–67 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41396-021-01050-5
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