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Understanding the drivers of the genetic and functional structure of deep-sea sponge symbiont communities

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 DeepSym project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the DeepSym project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "DeepSym" about.

hypothesis    regions    community    sea    sequencing    appreciably    coexisting    resolution    dna    symbiotic    sponges    hosting    breakthrough    metabolism    ecosystem    attracting    gap    habitat    sessile    species    extreme    abiotic    exhibit    genotyping    intraspecific    functions    bridging    constitute    structure    variety    pillars    genetic    microorganisms    function    evolution    technologies    services    sponge    received    distributed    communities    bacterial    marine    region    benthos    composition    porifera    feeding    profiles    tested    biotic    variation    latitudinal    shaping    locations    frontier    suggested    multispecies    dominate    contrasting    compositional    microbial    segregated    gradients    biochemical    water    explore    dense    organisms    rigorously    relationships    geographically    vary    phylum    rna    environment    genotype    filter    attributed    generation    population    symbiosis    individuals    localities    diverse    shallow    functional    variability    repertoire    host    deep   

Project "DeepSym" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
city: LONDON
postcode: SW7 5BD

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country United Kingdom [UK]
 Total cost 195˙454 €
 EC max contribution 195˙454 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2017
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2018
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2018-05-01   to  2020-04-30


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM UK (LONDON) coordinator 195˙454.00


 Project objective

Sponges (phylum Porifera) are sessile filter-feeding organisms that dominate the benthos in many regions of the marine environment. They represent the pillars of the ecosystem for the functions and services they provide. Sponges are known for hosting dense, diverse, and highly specific microbial communities that contribute appreciably to the host’s metabolism and biochemical repertoire. Shallow water sponges and their associated microorganisms have received most attention but much less is known about deep-sea sponges, and whether these sponges exhibit contrasting functions and symbiotic relationships as a result of being in an extreme environment. This project aims to determine the next frontier of sponge symbiosis: the functionality of the microbial consortia of deep-sea sponges. Sponge associated microbial communities vary within and among species, and this variation can be attributed to biotic and abiotic factors. The genetic variability and population structure of the host sponge has been suggested as a factor controlling the intraspecific bacterial composition in different locations. This hypothesis has yet to be rigorously tested, particularly examining coexisting species in the same habitat and species widely distributed across latitudinal gradients. I will explore the role of the host genotype in shaping the associated microbial community by examining several individuals of three species of sponges among five geographically segregated regions, including three localities within each region. Genotyping of sponges and analyses of microbial communities will use next generation sequencing technologies of DNA and RNA, providing high-resolution information of host relationships, microbial compositional and functional profiles. This project will constitute a major breakthrough in bridging the gap between evolution and function in multispecies relationships, attracting the interest of a wide variety of fields.

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The information about "DEEPSYM" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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