Microbiome of the Queensland fruit fly through metamorphosis

Rajib Majumder*, Brodie Sutcliffe, Phillip W. Taylor, Toni A. Chapman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)
27 Downloads (Pure)


Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Queensland fruit fly, or “Qfly”) is a highly polyphagous tephritid fruit fly and a serious economic pest in Australia. Qfly biology is intimately linked to the bacteria and fungi of its microbiome. While there are numerous studies of the microbiome in larvae and adults, the transition of the microbiome through the pupal stage remains unknown. To address this knowledge gap, we used high-throughput Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) to examine microbial communities at each developmental stage in the Qfly life cycle, targeting the bacterial 16S rRNA and fungal ITS regions. We found that microbial communities were similar at the larval and pupal stage and were also similar between adult males and females, yet there were marked differences between the larval and adult stages. Specific bacterial and fungal taxa are present in the larvae and adults (fed hydrolyzed yeast with sugar) which is likely related to differences in nutritional biology of these life stages. We observed a significant abundance of the Acetobacteraceae at the family level, both in the larval and pupal stages. Conversely, Enterobacteriaceae was highly abundant (> 80%) only in the adults. The majority of fungal taxa present in Qfly were yeasts or yeast-like fungi. In addition to elucidating changes in the microbiome through developmental stages, this study characterizes the Qfly microbiome present at the establishment of laboratory colonies as they enter the domestication process.

Original languageEnglish
Article number795
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2020. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • Gut bacteria and fungi
  • Next-Generation Sequencing
  • Yeast and yeast like


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