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Fungal Elevational Rapoport pattern from a High Mountain in Japan

Abstract : Little is known of how fungal distribution ranges vary with elevation. We studied fungal diversity and community composition from 740 to 2940 m above sea level on Mt. Norikura, Japan, sequencing the ITS2 region. There was a clear trend, repeated across each of the fungal phyla (Basidiomycota, Ascomycota, Zygomycota, Chytridomycota and Glomeromycota), and across the whole fungal community combined, towards an increased elevational range of higher elevation OTUs, conforming to the elevational Rapoport pattern. It appears that fungi from higher elevation environments are more generalized ecologically, at least in terms of climate-related gradients. These findings add to the picture from latitudinal studies of fungal ranges, which also suggest that the classic Rapoport Rule (broader ranges at higher latitudes) applies on a geographical scale. However, there was no mid-elevation maximum in diversity in any of the phyla studied, and different diversity trends for the different phyla, when different diversity indices were used. In terms of functional guilds, on Norikura there were trends towards increased saprotrophism (Zygomycota), symbiotrophism (Basidiomycota), symbiotrophism and saprotrophism (Ascomycota) and pathotrophism (Chytridiomycota) with elevation. The causes of each of these trends require further investigation from an ecological and evolutionary viewpoint.
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Matthew Chidozie Ogwu, Koichi Takahashi, Ke Dong, Ho-Kyung Song, Itumeleng Moroenyane, et al.. Fungal Elevational Rapoport pattern from a High Mountain in Japan. Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group, 2019, 9 (1), pp.6570. ⟨10.1038/s41598-019-43025-9⟩. ⟨pasteur-02133036⟩

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