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Agricultural land use disrupts biodiversity mediation of virus infections in wild plant populations


Susi, Hanna; Laine, Anna‐Liisa (2021). Agricultural land use disrupts biodiversity mediation of virus infections in wild plant populations. New Phytologist:Epub ahead of print.

Abstract

Human alteration of natural habitats may change the processes governing species interactions in wild communities. Wild populations are increasingly impacted by agricultural intensification, yet it is unknown whether this alters biodiversity mediation of disease dynamics.
We investigated the association between plant diversity (species richness, diversity) and infection risk (virus richness, prevalence) in populations of Plantago lanceolata in natural landscapes as well as those occurring at the edges of cultivated fields. Altogether, 27 P. lanceolata populations were surveyed for population characteristics and sampled for PCR detection of five recently characterized viruses.
We find that plant species richness and diversity correlated negatively with virus infection prevalence. Virus species richness declined with increasing plant diversity and richness in natural populations while in agricultural edge populations species richness was moderately higher, and not associated with plant richness. This difference was not explained by changes in host richness between these two habitats, suggesting potential pathogen spill‐over and increased transmission of viruses across the agro‐ecological interface. Host population connectivity significantly decreased virus infection prevalence.
We conclude that human use of landscapes may change the ecological laws by which natural communities are formed with far reaching implications for ecosystem functioning and disease.

Abstract

Human alteration of natural habitats may change the processes governing species interactions in wild communities. Wild populations are increasingly impacted by agricultural intensification, yet it is unknown whether this alters biodiversity mediation of disease dynamics.
We investigated the association between plant diversity (species richness, diversity) and infection risk (virus richness, prevalence) in populations of Plantago lanceolata in natural landscapes as well as those occurring at the edges of cultivated fields. Altogether, 27 P. lanceolata populations were surveyed for population characteristics and sampled for PCR detection of five recently characterized viruses.
We find that plant species richness and diversity correlated negatively with virus infection prevalence. Virus species richness declined with increasing plant diversity and richness in natural populations while in agricultural edge populations species richness was moderately higher, and not associated with plant richness. This difference was not explained by changes in host richness between these two habitats, suggesting potential pathogen spill‐over and increased transmission of viruses across the agro‐ecological interface. Host population connectivity significantly decreased virus infection prevalence.
We conclude that human use of landscapes may change the ecological laws by which natural communities are formed with far reaching implications for ecosystem functioning and disease.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Scopus Subject Areas:Life Sciences > Physiology
Life Sciences > Plant Science
Uncontrolled Keywords:Plant Science, Physiology
Language:English
Date:21 January 2021
Deposited On:19 Feb 2021 16:12
Last Modified:20 Feb 2021 21:00
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0028-646X
OA Status:Hybrid
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/nph.17156

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