The mammalian gut is home to a diverse microbial ecosystem, whose composition affects various physiological traits of the host. Next-generation sequencing-based metagenomic approaches demonstrated how the interplay of host genetics, bacteria, and environmental factors shape complex traits and clinical outcomes. However, the role of fungi in these complex interactions remains understudied. Here, using 228 males and 363 females from an advanced-intercross mouse line, we provide evidence that fungi are regulated by host genetics. In addition, we map quantitative trait loci associated with various fungal species to single genes in mice using whole genome sequencing and genotyping. Moreover, we show that diet and its’ interaction with host genetics alter the composition of fungi in outbred mice, and identify fungal indicator species associated with different dietary regimes. Collectively, in this work, we uncover an association of the intestinal fungal community with host genetics and a regulatory role of diet in this ecological niche.
Research Areas and Centers
- Academic Focus: Center for Infection and Inflammation Research (ZIEL)