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Importance of microorganisms to macroorganisms invasions: Is the essential invisible to the eye? (The Little Prince, A. de Saint-Exupéry, 1943)

: Amsellem, L.; Brouat, C.; Duron, O.; Porter, S.S.; Vilcinskas, A.; Facon, B.


Bohan, D.:
Networks of invasion. Empirical evidence and case studies
Amsterdam: Elsevier, 2017 (Advances in ecological research 57)
ISBN: 978-0-12-813328-6
Aufsatz in Buch
Fraunhofer IME ()

Microorganisms comprise the majority of earth's biodiversity and are integral to biosphere processes. Biological invasions are no exception to this trend. The success of introduced macroorganisms can be deeply influenced by diverse microorganisms (bacteria, virus, fungus and protozoa) occupying the whole range of species interaction outcomes, from parasitism to obligate mutualism. This large range of interactions, often coupled with complex historical and introduction events, can result in a wide variety of ecological dynamics. In this chapter, we review different situations in which microorganisms affect biological invasions. First, we consider outcomes of microorganism loss during the introduction of alien species. Second, we discuss positive effects of microorganisms on the invasiveness of their exotic hosts. Third, we examine the influence of microorganisms hosted by native species on the success of introduced species. Finally, in an applied perspective, we envisage how microorganisms can be used (i) to better decipher invasion processes and (ii) as biological control agents.