Bing ZHANG,Xiangyun DING,Jianping JIANG,et al.Metagenomic Analysis of Mangshan Pit Viper (Protobothrops mangshanensis) Gut Microbiota Reveals Differences among Wild and Captive Individuals Linked to Hibernating Behaviors[J].Asian Herpetological Research(AHR),2022,13(4):251-268.[doi:10.16373/j.cnki.ahr.220003]
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Metagenomic Analysis of Mangshan Pit Viper (Protobothrops mangshanensis) Gut Microbiota Reveals Differences among Wild and Captive Individuals Linked to Hibernating Behaviors
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Asian Herpetological Research[ISSN:2095-0357/CN:51-1735/Q]

2022 VoI.13 No.4
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Metagenomic Analysis of Mangshan Pit Viper (Protobothrops mangshanensis) Gut Microbiota Reveals Differences among Wild and Captive Individuals Linked to Hibernating Behaviors
Bing ZHANG12 Xiangyun DING1 Jianping JIANG3 Linhai LI4 and Daode YANG1*
1 Institute of Wildlife Conservation, Central South University of Forestry and Technology, Changsha 410004, Hunan, China
2 Qilu Normal University, Jinan 250200, Shandong, China
3 Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041, Sichuan, China
4 Department for Wildlife and Forest Plants Protection, National Forestry and Grassland Administration, Beijing 100714, China
composition and diversity gene functions and pathways gut microbiota metagenomics Protobothrops mangshanensis
Gut microbiota play important roles in the immunity, digestion, and energy metabolism of their reptile hosts. Mangshan pit viper (Protobothrops mangshanensis) is a critically endangered snake species that is a Class I national protected species in China. Little is known regarding the relationship between P. mangshanensis and their gut microbial communities. In this study, the gut microbiota of wild P. mangshanensis individuals, artificially hibernating captive individuals, and non-hibernating captive individuals were compared across nine samples. Comparative shotgun metagenomic analysis was used to investigate the taxonomic composition, diversity, and function of P. mangshanensis gut microbial communities and assess whether their gut microbiomes were affected by their living environments and captivity conditions. The dominant phyla within P. mangshanensis gut microbial communities were Proteobacteria (65.55%), Bacteroidetes (15.97%), and Firmicutes (8.11%). Enriched functional pathways within the gut microbiota included metabolism (54.9%), environmental information processing (9.67%), and genetic information processing (9.37%). Wild snake gut communities exhibited higher microbial diversity than the other two groups. The gut microbiomes of wild and hibernating captive snakes may be more reflective of healthy intestinal homeostasis than that in non-hibernating snakes. Specifically, non-hibernating snakes exhibited increased levels of potentially pathogenic populations and functional specialization within gut microbial communities. Thus, different living environments and captivity methods may correspond to major shifts in microbiota composition, diversity, and function within P. mangshanensis. This study provides important insights to help guide the conservation of P. mangshanensis, while also carrying broad implications for our understanding of the effects of living environments and non-hibernating captivity conditions on the gut microbiota of snakes.


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