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Plants, Volume 9, Issue 2 (February 2020) – 158 articles
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Cover Story (view full-size image) Diatom–diazotroph associations (DDAs) are symbioses where diazotrophs support the host diatoms with [...] Read more. Diatom–diazotroph associations (DDAs) are symbioses where diazotrophs support the host diatoms with dinitrogen (N2) fixation. We developed a mechanistic model of DDAs, to quantify the reciprocal metabolic advantages of this symbiotic relationship. Model simulations show that 25% of fixed carbon (C) from the diatom is transferred to the diazotrophs, which is used for their growth and N2 fixation. In turn, 82% of N fixed by the diazotrophs ends up in the host diatoms. The model predicts that the C transfer from the diatom can increase the growth rate of the diazotrophs by 62%. These results explain the observed high rates of growth and N2 fixation of the diazotrophs in DDAs relative to those of other non-symbiotic diazotrophs. View this paper.