About this Research Topic
Microorganisms are ubiquitous and interact with a wide range of organisms through a network of signals enabling the establishment of complex ecosystems essential for life on Earth. Besides signals intended for reciprocal cross-talk (like auto-inducers) or aimed at population control (such as bacteriocins), bacteria can form microbial synthrophic chains which play essential roles in geochemical cycles but also contribute to plant, animal and human evolution. Some pathways, like nitrogen fixation, represent a complex strategy in which evolution of both prokaryotes and plants occurred by adaptive responses. Detailed investigation of this interkingdom communication, including the identification of molecular signals, their biosynthetic pathways, their targets and transduction mechanisms, is crucial for an improved understanding of biological systems. Microbial bioactive compounds have received growing attention for their implications in human health. It is now universally accepted that gut microbial communities play an active role in the maintenance of a healthy status by releasing small molecules with biological action which affect the overall mammalian gut-brain axis, immune system activity, metabolic pathways and oxidative balance. This intense network of molecules, involving bacteria, viruses and eukaryotic cells has evolved to guarantee optimal life in different ecological niches to each component of the ecosystem and is based upon effectors-receptors model.
The topic accepts articles that are related to interkingdom interactions relevant to biological systems of global nutrient cycling relevance, including host-microbe interactions.
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