Generated on: 08-20-19 00:49:01

Studies Samples Users Jobs
public: 489
private: 267
sandbox: 1,768
submitted to EBI: 318
public: 266,584
private: 187,695
sandbox: 380,480
submitted to EBI: 206,541
submitted to EBI (prep): 155,146
6,779 236,270

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Metcalf Microbial community assembly and metabolic function during mammalian corpse decomposition Mouse exp

Vertebrate corpse decomposition provides an important stage in nutrient cycling in most terrestrial habitats, yet microbially-mediated processes are poorly understood. Here we combine deep microbial community characterization, community-level metabolic reconstruction, and soil biogeochemical assessment to understand principles governing microbial community assembly during decomposition of mouse and human corpses on different soil substrates. We find a suite of bacterial and fungal groups contributing to nitrogen cycling and a reproducible network of decomposers that emerge on predictable timescales. The results show this decomposer community is derived primarily from bulk soil, but key decomposers are ubiquitous in low abundance. Soil type was not a dominant factor driving community development and the process of decomposition is sufficiently reproducible that it offers unique opportunities for forensic investigations.

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