Developmental and gut-related changes to microbiomes of the cultured juvenile spiny lobsterPanulirus ornatus

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With recent technologies making it possible for commercial scale closed life-cycle aquaculture production of spiny lobster (Panulirus ornatus) comes a strong impetus to further understand aspects of lobster health. The gut microbiome plays a crucial role in host health, affecting growth, digestion, immune responses and pathogen resistance. Herein we characterise and compare gut microbiomes across different developmental stages (6-7 days post-emergence [dpe], 52 dpe and 13 months post-emergence [mpe]) and gut regions (foregut, midgut and hindgut) of cultured P. ornatus juveniles. Gut samples were analysed using 16S rRNA next-generation sequencing. Core gut microbiomes of P. ornatus comprised the phyla Tenericutes and Proteobacteria. Within class Gammaproteobacteria, families Pseudoalteromonadaceae and Vibrionaceae were dominant members across the majority of the gut microbiomes. Characterisation of bacterial communities from 13 mpe lobsters indicated that the hindgut microbiome was more diverse and compositionally dissimilar to the foregut and midgut. The bacterial composition of the hindgut was more similar among younger juveniles (6-7 dpe and 52 dpe) compared to 13 mpe lobsters. This is the first study to explore gut microbiomes of spiny lobster juveniles. We demonstrate that the composition of the gut microbiome was shaped by gut region, whereas the structure of the hindgut microbiome was influenced by developmental stage.

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