Aschwin Engelen

Aschwin Engelen
Centro de Ciências do Mar | CCMAR · Marine Microbial Ecology & Biotechnology

PhD, Marine Biology, University of Groningen, The Netherlands
Microbiomes of corals, algae and seagrasses, interactions and uses for conservation, restoration, production and biotech

About

190
Publications
47,219
Reads
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Introduction
I studied Marine Biology at the University of Groningen, where I also did my PhD on the Caribbean Sargassum polyceratium. Since 2002 I work in Faro, Portugal mainly focusing on biological marine invasions/proliferations of seaweeds affecting native seaweeds, seagrasses and corals. Descriptive and experimental ecology is combined with state of the art molecular techniques. Currently the focus is on the role of microbiomes associated to marine macro-organisms and their application potential.
Additional affiliations
March 2014 - February 2015
Centro de Ciências do Mar
Position
  • InDeGrass - Induction of anti-herbivore defences in seagrasses
January 2014 - January 2016
Centro de Ciências do Mar
Position
  • ZEN2 Eelgrass experimental network
March 2013 - February 2016
Centro de Ciências do Mar
Position
  • INVASIVES- Invasive seaweeds in rising temperatures: impacts and risks assessments (SEAS-ERA)
Education
September 1990 - September 1995
University of Groningen
Field of study
  • Marine Biology

Publications

Publications (190)
Article
Full-text available
Distribution of Earth’s biomes is structured by the match between climate and plant traits, which in turn shape associated communities and ecosystem processes and services. However, that climate–trait match can be disrupted by historical events, with lasting ecosystem impacts. As Earth’s environment changes faster than at any time in human history,...
Article
Full-text available
Macroalgal surface constitutes a peculiar ecological niche and an advantageous substratum for microorganisms able to degrade the wide diversity of algal glycans. The degrading enzymatic activities of macroalgal epiphytes are of paramount interest for the industrial by-product sector and biomass resource applications. We characterized the polysaccha...
Article
Full-text available
Marine coastal and transitional ecosystems are facing increasing impacts, and often reflect the most immediate effects of environmental change, habitat destruction, and biodiversity loss. With over half of the population currently living in coastal areas, these areas are of interest for multiple uses and resources, as well as subjected to multiple...
Article
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Marinas are a gateway for the introduction and establishment of non-indigenous species (NIS). In these habitats, competition and predation are crucial determinants for NIS establishment and invasiveness. However, fish trophic preferences and biotic effects inside marinas are poorly known. This study proposes a novel method that combines the deploym...
Article
Full-text available
The green seaweed Ulva is a model system to study seaweed‐bacteria interactions, but the impact of environmental drivers on the dynamics of these interactions is little understood. In this study, we investigated the stability and variability of the seaweed‐associated bacteria across the Atlantic‐Baltic Sea salinity gradient. We characterised the ba...
Article
Full-text available
While considerable evidence exists of biogeographic patterns in the intensity of species interactions, the influence of these patterns on variation in community structure is less clear. Studying how the distributions of traits in communities vary along global gradients can inform how variation in interactions and other factors contribute to the pro...
Article
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Algal demographic models have been developed mainly to study their life cycle evolution or optimize their commercial exploitation. Most commonly, structured-aggregated population models simulate the main life cycle stages considering their fertility, growth and survival. Their coarse resolution results in weak predictive abilities since neglected d...
Article
The brown algal genus Lobophora (Dictyotales, Phaeophyceae) is an important ecological component of tropical marine systems. Although still scantily sampled, 35 species of Lobophora were discovered previously from the western Indian Ocean. This study updates previous diversity estimates by incorporating recent collections from Madagascar, Mozambiqu...
Article
Full-text available
Invasive plants, including marine macrophytes, are one of the most important threats to biodiversity by displacing native species and organisms depending on them. Invasion success is dependent on interactions among living organisms, but their study has been mostly limited to negative interactions while positive interactions are mostly underlooked....
Article
Full-text available
The present study focused on the dynamics of the phenology and life cycle of the Phaeophyceae invader Sargassum muticum at three sites on the Atlantic coast of Morocco over a period of two years (2013 and 2014). The results showed that S. muticum has two distinct growth phases; one with slower growth in winter followed by one with faster growth in...
Article
Full-text available
A correction to this paper has been published: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00227-021-03889-w
Article
Latitudinal diversity gradients have provided many insights into species differentiation and community processes. In the well‐studied intertidal zone, however, little is known about latitudinal diversity in microbiomes associated with habitat‐forming hosts. We investigated microbiomes of Fucus vesiculosus because of deep understanding of this model...
Article
Full-text available
On the evenings of June 11 and 12, 2019, 5 and 6 days before full moon, broadcast spawning by four echinoderm species and two mollusc species was observed on the Marsa Shagra reef, Egypt (25° 14′ 44.2" N, 34° 47′ 49.0" E). Water temperature was 28 °C and the invertebrates were observed at 2–8 m depth. The sightings included a single basket star Ast...
Article
Wetland ecosystems are critical to the regulation of the global carbon cycle, and there is a high demand for data to improve carbon sequestration and emission models and predictions. Decomposition of plant litter is an important component of ecosystem carbon cycling, yet a lack of knowledge on decay rates in wetlands is an impediment to predicting...
Article
Full-text available
Host-microbe interactions play crucial roles in marine ecosystems. However, we still have very little understanding of the mechanisms that govern these relationships, the evolutionary processes that shape them, and their ecological consequences. The holobiont concept is a renewed paradigm in biology that can help to describe and understand these co...
Article
Full-text available
Conditional differentiation between haploids and diploids has been proposed to drive the evolutionary stability of isomorphic biphasic life cycles. The cost of producing and maintaining genetic information has been posed as a possible driver of this conditional differentiation. Under this hypothesis, haploids benefit over diploids in resource‐limit...
Article
Full-text available
Epifaunal assemblages inhabiting the non-indigenous macroalga Sargassum muticum (Yendo) Fensholt were investigated on two physically distinct intertidal rocky (S1) and sandy (S2) sites along the Atlantic coast of Morocco. The objective of this study was to test whether the habitat-forming marine alga S. muticum invasive in these sites supported dif...
Article
Full-text available
Corals are associated with diverse microbial assemblages; however, the spatial-temporal dynamics of intra-species microbial interactions are poorly understood. The coral-associated microbial community varies substantially between tissue and mucus microhabitats; however, the factors controlling the occurrence, abundance, and distribution of microbia...
Article
Full-text available
Halophila stipulacea is a small tropical seagrass, native to the Red Sea, Persian Gulf, and the Indian Ocean. It invaded the Mediterranean Sea 150 years ago as a Lessepsian migrant, but so far has remained in insulated, small populations across this basin. Surprisingly, in 2002 it was reported in the Caribbean Sea, where within less than two decade...
Research Proposal
Rising atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) are causing surface seawater pH and carbonate ion concentrations to fall in a process known as ocean acidification (OA). While precise predictions for OA impacts are currently not possible, as it involves complex interactions between organisms and the action of multiple environmental variabl...
Preprint
Full-text available
Host-microbe interactions play crucial roles in marine ecosystems. However, we still have very little understanding of the mechanisms that govern these relationships, the evolutionary processes that shape them, and their ecological consequences. The holobiont concept is a renewed paradigm in biology that can help to describe and understand these co...
Article
Full-text available
This working group gathers 31 scientists from ten different countries, with expertise covering different scientific disciplines including philosophy, evolution, computer sciences, marine biology, ecology, chemistry, and microbiology, who participated in a workshop on marine holobionts, organized at the Roscoff Biological Station in March 2018. Thei...
Article
Full-text available
Twenty‐years of genetic studies of marine invaders have shown that successful invaders are often characterized by native and introduced populations displaying similar levels of genetic diversity. This pattern is presumably due to high propagule pressure and repeated introductions. The opposite pattern is reported in this study of the brown seaweed,...
Article
Distributed in tropical and warm‐temperate waters worldwide, Lobophora species are found across the Greater Caribbean (i.e., Caribbean sensu stricto, Gulf of Mexico, Florida, the Bahamas, and Bermuda). We presently discuss the diversity, ecology, biogeography and evolution of the Greater Caribbean Lobophora species based on previous studies and an...
Article
Full-text available
Macroalgal microbiomes have core functions related to biofilm formation, growth, and morphogenesis of seaweeds. In particular, the growth and development of the sea lettuce Ulva spp. (Chlorophyta) depends on bacteria releasing morphogenetic compounds. Under axenic conditions, the macroalga Ulva mutabilis develops a callus-like phenotype with cell w...
Article
Coastal ecosystems are subjected to multiple co-occurring anthropogenic stressors which potentially interact to produce complex impacts on the structure and functioning of biological communities. Seagrass meadows are among the most rapidly declining coastal habitats on Earth. In particular, high nutrient loadings, enhanced sedimentation and competi...
Article
Research into the microbiomes of natural environments is changing the way ecologists and evolutionary biologists view the importance of microorganisms in ecosystem function. This is particularly relevant in ocean environments, where microorganisms constitute the majority of biomass and control most of the major biogeochemical cycles, including thos...
Preprint
Full-text available
Host-microbe interactions play crucial roles in marine ecosystems, but we still have very little understanding of the mechanisms that govern these relationships, the evolutionary processes that shape them, and their ecological consequences. The holobiont concept is a renewed paradigm in biology that can help describe and understand these complex sy...
Article
Full-text available
Aim Phenology of a wide diversity of organisms has a dependency on climate, usually with reproductive periods beginning earlier in the year and lasting longer at lower latitudes. Temperature and day length are known environmental drivers of the reproductive timing of many species. Hence, reproductive phenology is sensitive to warming and is importa...
Preprint
Full-text available
Host-microbe interactions play crucial roles in marine ecosystems, but we still have very little understanding of the mechanisms that govern these relationships, the evolutionary processes that shape them, and their ecological consequences. The holobiont concept is a renewed paradigm in biology that can help describe and understand these complex sy...
Preprint
Full-text available
Host-microbe interactions play crucial roles in marine ecosystems, but we still have very little understanding of the mechanisms that govern these relationships, the evolutionary processes that shape them, and their ecological consequences. The holobiont concept is a renewed paradigm in biology that can help describe and understand these complex sy...
Preprint
Host-microbe interactions play crucial roles in marine ecosystems, but we still have very little understanding of the mechanisms that govern these relationships, the evolutionary processes that shape them, and their ecological consequences. The holobiont concept is a renewed paradigm in biology that can help describe and understand these complex sy...
Article
Full-text available
Host-microbe interactions play crucial roles in marine ecosystems. However, we still have very little understanding of the mechanisms that govern these relationships, the evolutionary processes that shape them, and their ecological consequences. The holobiont concept is a renewed paradigm in biology that can help to describe and understand these co...
Article
Full-text available
The input of nutrients from anthropogenic sources is the leading cause of coastal eutrophication and is usually coupled with algal/seaweed blooms. Effects may be magnified in semi-enclosed systems, such as highly productive coastal lagoon ecosystems. Eutrophication and seaweed blooms can lead to ecosystem disruption. Previous studies have considere...
Article
Full-text available
Seaweed-associated microbiota experience spatial and temporal shifts in response to changing environmental conditions and seaweed physiology. These shifts may result in structural, functional and behavioral changes in the host with potential consequences for its fitness. They, thus, may help the host to adapt to changing environmental conditions. T...
Data
Table A. PERMANOVA results: Structure of bacterial communities associated with S. muticum, seawater and sediments (ti) at two locations (lo) and three months (mo). Table B. PERMANOVA Pair-wise tests between locations by month and seaweed structure of the interaction term ‘location x month x tissue’ of bacterial community structure associated with S...
Article
Full-text available
Background Algal isomorphic biphasic life cycles alternate between free-living diploid (tetrasporophytes) and haploid (dioicious gametophytes) phases and the hypotheses explaining their maintenance are still debated. Classic models state that conditional differentiation between phases is required for the evolutionary stability of biphasic life cycl...
Article
Full-text available
We investigated the microbial communities associated with surface mucus layer, tissue, and gastrovascular cavity of two azooxanthellate Caribbean cup corals (Tubastrea coccinea and Rhizopsammia goesi) to explore potential differences in microbial community composition within and among these azooxanthellate scleractinian corals. Using next-generatio...
Article
Full-text available
Background Conditional differentiation is one of the most fundamental drivers of biodiversity. Competitive entities (usually species) differ in environmental or ecological niche enabling them to co-exist. Conditional differentiation of haploid and diploid generations is considered to be a requirement for the evolutionary stability of isomorphic bip...
Article
Full-text available
The littoral paranthurid isopod crustacean Paranthura nigropunctata (Lucas, 1846) is recorded for the first time from the littoral of El Jadida located on the Atlantic northwest coast of Morocco. Specimens were obtained from the invasive brown seaweed Sargassum muticum and the natives Bifurcaria bifurcata and Cystoseira tamariscifolia in January 20...
Article
Full-text available
The nature of species distribution boundaries is a key subject in ecology and evolution. Edge populations are potentially more exposed to climate-related environmental pressures. Despite research efforts, little is known about variability in fitness-related traits in leading (i.e., colder, high latitude) versus trailing (i.e., warmer, low latitude)...
Data
Table A. Pairwise tests for Fv/Fm data. Table B. Pairwise tests for the significant factors (Edge or Temperature) in Z. marina Fv/Fm data. Table C. PERMANOVA results for normalised relative expression of seven genes after the 3h HS (n = 3). Table D. PERMANOVA results for normalised relative expression of seven genes during Recovery (n = 3). Table E...
Article
Full-text available
Seaweeds are currently considered to be a promising source of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). However, PUFA content and their composition can vary greatly depending on species and environmental conditions. In this study fatty acid (FA) profiles have been investigated in eight brown seaweeds collected from the Atlantic coast of Morocco, namely B...
Article
The diversity and structure of epiphytic macrofaunal assemblages on the introduced invasive brown macroalga Sargassum muticum and native fucoids (Bifurcaria bifurcata, Cystoseira humilis, Cystoseira tamariscifolia and Sargassum vulgare) were compared over a 1-year period in intertidal rockpools on the Atlantic coast of Morocco. In comparison with t...
Article
Full-text available
Climate-driven range-shifts create evolutionary opportunities for allopatric divergence and subsequent contact, leading to genetic structuration and hybrid zones. We investigate how these processes influenced the evolution of a complex of three closely related Cystoseira spp., which are a key component of the Mediterranean-Atlantic seaweed forests...
Article
Full-text available
Marine macrophytes are the foundation of algal forests and seagrass meadows-some of the most productive and diverse coastal marine ecosystems on the planet. These ecosystems provide nursery grounds and food for fish and invertebrates, coastline protection from erosion, carbon sequestration, and nutrient fixation. For marine macrophytes, temperature...
Article
Full-text available
Seagrasses play an important role as ecosystem engineers; they provide shelter to many animals and improve water quality by filtering out nutrients and by controlling pathogens. Moreover, their rhizosphere promotes a myriad of microbial interactions and processes, which are dominated by microorganisms involved in the sulfur cycle. This study provid...
Article
Climate change is inducing shifts in species ranges across the globe. These can affect the genetic pools of species, including loss of genetic variability and evolutionary potential. In particular, geographically enclosed ecosystems, like the Mediterranean Sea, have a higher risk of suffering species loss and genetic erosion due to barriers to furt...
Article
Full-text available
Ocean acidification significantly affects marine organisms in several ways, with complex interactions. Seaweeds might benefit from rising CO 2 through increased photosynthesis and carbon acquisition, with subsequent higher growth rates. However, changes in seaweed chemistry due to increased CO 2 may change the nutritional quality of tissue for graz...
Article
Full-text available
For marine meta-populations with source-sink dynamics knowledge about genetic connectivity is important to conserve biodiversity and design marine protected areas (MPAs). We evaluate connectivity of a Mediterranean sessile species, Pinna nobilis. To address a large geographical scale, partial sequences of cytochrome oxidase I (COI, 590 bp) were use...