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Phys Rev Lett. 2017 Jan 13;118(2):028103. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.028103. Epub 2017 Jan 12.

Metabolic Trade-Offs Promote Diversity in a Model Ecosystem.

Author information

1
Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey 08544, USA.
2
Department of Mathematics and Department of Neuroscience, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712, USA.
3
Department of Molecular Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey 08544, USA.

Abstract

In nature, a large number of species can coexist on a small number of shared resources; however, resource-competition models predict that the number of species in steady coexistence cannot exceed the number of resources. Motivated by recent studies of phytoplankton, we introduce trade-offs into a resource-competition model and find that an unlimited number of species can coexist. Our model spontaneously reproduces several notable features of natural ecosystems, including keystone species and population dynamics and abundances characteristic of neutral theory, despite an underlying non-neutral competition for resources.

PMID:
28128613
PMCID:
PMC5743855
DOI:
10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.028103
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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