Cuttlefish microbiome is super simple: it contains only two types of bacteria

An interesting discovery concerning the cuttlefish microbiome was made by a group of researchers from the Marine Biological Laboratory of the University of Chicago.

The scientists have in fact outlined the microbiome of this marine animal, that is the set of all the bacteria inside his body, and have discovered that it is a very simple microbiome, at least compared to that of other animals, if not the human beings who boast a microbiome that contains hundreds of families and thousands of species of bacteria are in the intestine.

The scientists, led by Jessica Mark Welch, Roger Hanlon and Jack Gilbert (the latter of the University of California, San Diego), have in fact discovered that the common European cuttlefish, an animal that is known for its impressive abilities mimetic, it has a microbiome that can only count on two different families of bacteria: Vibrionaceae and Piscirickettsiaceae.

Through microscope analysis, scientists have discovered that most microbes are found in the area of ​​the esophagus.

In particular, the scientists found the presence of the bacteria of the Vibrionaceae family interesting: “It is interesting to find those vibrios in association with cuttlefish. It suggests that there is a long-term evolutionary relationship between vibrios and marine invertebrates,” says Mark Welch.

The researchers believe that the vibrios in the cuttlefish esophagus represent a sort of reservoir of bacteria that propagate in the intestine carrying important enzymes for digestion.

However, pathogenic colonization of this part of the animal cannot be excluded. Understanding the microbiome of animals such as cuttlefish can be important not only ecologically but also to study interactions between animal bodies and bacteria in general.