Are alkalitolerant fungi of the Emericellopsis lineage (Bionectriaceae) of marine origin?
ABSTRACT: Surveying the fungi of alkaline soils in Siberia, Trans-Baikal regions (Russia), the Aral lake (Kazakhstan), and Eastern Mongolia, we report an abundance of alkalitolerant species representing the Emericellopsis-clade within the Acremonium cluster of fungi (order Hypocreales). On an alkaline medium (pH ca. 10), 34 acremonium-like fungal strains were obtained. One of these was able to develop a sexual morph and was shown to be a new member of the genus Emericellopsis, described here as E. alkalina sp. nov. Previous studies showed two distinct ecological clades within Emericellopsis, one consisting of terrestrial isolates and one predominantly marine. Remarkably, all the isolates from our study sites show high phylogenetic similarity based on six loci (LSU and SSU rDNA, RPB2, TEF1-?, ?-tub and ITS region), regardless of their provenance within a broad geographical distribution. They group within the known marine-origin species, a finding that provides a possible link to the evolution of the alkaliphilic trait in the Emericellopsis lineage. We tested the capacities of all newly isolated strains, and the few available reference ex-type cultures, to grow over wide pH ranges. The growth performance varied among the tested isolates, which showed differences in growth rate as well as in pH preference. Whereas every newly isolated strain from soda soils was extremely alkalitolerant and displayed the ability to grow over a wide range of ambient pH (range 4-11.2), reference marine-borne and terrestrial strains showed moderate and no alkalitolerance, respectively. The growth pattern of the alkalitolerant Emericellopsis isolates was unlike that of the recently described and taxonomically unrelated alkaliphilic Sodiomyces alkalinus, obtained from the same type of soils but which showed a narrower preference towards high pH.
Project description:In this study we reassess the taxonomic reference of the previously described holomorphic alkaliphilic fungus Heleococcum alkalinum isolated from soda soils in Russia, Mongolia and Tanzania. We show that it is not an actual member of the genus Heleococcum (order Hypocreales) as stated before and should, therefore, be excluded from it and renamed. Multi-locus gene phylogeny analyses (based on nuclear ITS, 5.8S rDNA, 28S rDNA, 18S rDNA, RPB2 and TEF1-alpha) have displayed this fungus as a new taxon at the genus level within the family Plectosphaerellaceae, Hypocreomycetidae, Ascomycota. The reference species of actual Heleococcum members showed clear divergence from the strongly supported Heleococcum alkalinum position within the Plectosphaerellaceae, sister to the family Glomerellaceae. Eighteen strains isolated from soda lakes around the world show remarkable genetic similarity promoting speculations on their possible evolution in harsh alkaline environments. We established the pH growth optimum of this alkaliphilic fungus at c. pH 10 and tested growth on 30 carbon sources at pH 7 and 10. The new genus and species, Sodiomyces alkalinus gen. nov. comb. nov., is the second holomorphic fungus known within the family, the first one being Plectosphaerella - some members of this genus are known to be alkalitolerant. We propose the Plectosphaerellaceae family to be the source of alkaliphilic filamentous fungi as also the species known as Acremonium alcalophilum belongs to this group.
Project description:The filamentous fungi associated with healthy and decaying Fucus serratus thalli were studied over a 1-year period using isolation methods and molecular techniques such as 28S rRNA gene PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and phylogenetic and real-time PCR analyses. The predominant DGGE bands obtained from healthy algal thalli belonged to the Lindra, Lulworthia, Engyodontium, Sigmoidea/Corollospora complex, and Emericellopsis/Acremonium-like ribotypes. In the culture-based analysis the incidence of recovery was highest for Sigmoidea marina isolates. In general, the environmental sequences retrieved could be matched unambiguously to isolates recovered from the seaweed except for the Emericellopsis/Acremonium-like ribotype, which showed 99% homology with the sequences of four different isolates, including that of Acremonium fuci. To estimate the extent of colonization of A. fuci, we used a TaqMan real-time quantitative PCR assay for intron 3 of the beta-tubulin gene, the probe for which proved to be species specific even when it was used in amplifications with high background concentrations of other eukaryotic DNAs. The A. fuci sequence was detected with both healthy and decaying thalli, but the signal was stronger for the latter. Additional sequence types, representing members from the Dothideomycetes, were recovered from the decaying thallus DNA, which suggested that a change in fungal community structure had occurred. Phylogenetic analysis of these environmental sequences and the sequences of isolates and type species indicated that the environmental sequences were novel in the Dothideomycetes.
Project description:Two groups of alkaliphilic haloarchaea from hypersaline alkaline lakes in Central Asia, Egypt and North America were enriched and isolated in pure culture using chitin as growth substrate. These cultures, termed AArcht, were divided into two groups: group 1 which includes eleven isolates from highly alkaline soda lakes and group 2 which contains a single isolate obtained from the alkaline hypersaline Searles Lake. The colonies of chitin-utilizing natronoarchaea were red-pigmented and surrounded by large zones of chitin hydrolysis. The free cells of both groups were mostly flat nonmotile rods, while the cells that attached to chitin or formed colonies on chitin plates were mostly coccoid. The isolates are obligate aerobic saccharolytic archaea utilizing chitin and chitosane (less actively) as the only sugar polymers as well as a few hexoses as their carbon and energy source. Both groups are extremely halophilic, growing optimally at 3.5-4M total Na+, but they differ in their pH profiles: the main group 1 isolates are obligately alkaliphilic, while the single group 2 strain (AArcht-SlT) is alkalitolerant. The core archaeal lipids in both groups are dominated by C20-C20 and C20-C25 dialkyl glycerol ethers (DGE) in approximately equal proportion. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the isolates form an independent genus-level lineage within the family Natrialbaceae with 3 species-level subgroups. The available genomes of the closest cultured relatives of the AArcht strains, belonging to the genera Natrialba and Halopiger, do not encode any chitinase-related genes. On the basis of their unique phenotypic properties and distinct phylogeny, we suggest that the obligate alkaliphilic AArcht isolates (group 1) with an identical phenotype are classified into a new genus and species Natrarchaeobius chitinivorans gen. nov., sp. nov., with strain AArcht4T as the type strain (JCM 32476T=UNIQEM U966T), while the facultatively alkaliphilic strain AArcht-SlT (group 2) - as a new species Natrarchaeobius halalkaliphilus sp. nov. (JCM 32477T=UNIQEM U969T).
Project description:Soil microbes play important roles in plant growth and health. Little is known about the differences of soil microbes between healthy and bacterial wilt infected soils with Ralstonia solanacearum. By Illumina-MiSeq sequencing of 16S rRNA and 18S rRNA gene amplicons, we found the soil microbial composition and diversity were distinct between healthy and bacterial wilt infected soils. Soil microbial community varied at different plant growth stages due to changes of root exudates composition and soil pH. Healthy soils exhibited higher microbial diversity than the bacterial wilt infected soils. More abundant beneficial microbes including Bacillus, Agromyces, Micromonospora, Pseudonocardia, Acremonium, Lysobacter, Mesorhizobium, Microvirga, Bradyrhizobium, Acremonium and Chaetomium were found in the healthy soils rather than the bacterial wilt infected soils. Compared to bacterial wilt infected soils, the activities of catalase, invertase and urease, as well as soil pH, available phosphorous and potassium content, were all significantly increased in the healthy soils. In a conclusion, the higher abundance of beneficial microbes are positively related the higher soil quality, including better plant growth, lower disease incidence, and higher nutrient contents, soil enzyme activities and soil pH.
Project description:Alkaliphilic Bacillus species grow at pH values up to approximately 11. Motile alkaliphilic Bacillus use electrochemical gradients of Na(+) (sodium-motive force) to power ion-coupled, flagella-mediated motility as opposed to the electrochemical gradients of H(+) (proton-motive force) used by most neutralophilic bacteria. Membrane-embedded stators of bacterial flagella contain ion channels through which either H(+) or Na(+) flow to energize flagellar rotation. Stators of the major H(+)-coupled type, MotAB, are distinguishable from Na(+)-coupled stators, PomAB of marine bacteria and MotPS of alkaliphilic Bacillus. Dual ion-coupling capacity is found in neutralophilic Bacillus strains with both MotAB and MotPS. There is also a MotAB variant that uses both coupling ions, switching as a function of pH. Chemotaxis of alkaliphilic Bacillus depends upon flagellar motility but also requires a distinct voltage-gated NaChBac-type channel. The two alkaliphile Na(+) channels provide new vistas on the diverse adaptations of sensory responses in bacteria.
Project description:Three kinds of alkaliphilic bacteria able to utilize thiocyanate (CNS-) at pH 10 were found in highly alkaline soda lake sediments and soda soils. The first group included obligate heterotrophs that utilized thiocyanate as a nitrogen source while growing at pH 10 with acetate as carbon and energy sources. Most of the heterotrophic strains were able to oxidize sulfide and thiosulfate to tetrathionate. The second group included obligately autotrophic sulfur-oxidizing alkaliphiles which utilized thiocyanate nitrogen during growth with thiosulfate as the energy source. Genetic analysis demonstrated that both the heterotrophic and autotrophic alkaliphiles that utilized thiocyanate as a nitrogen source were related to the previously described sulfur-oxidizing alkaliphiles belonging to the gamma subdivision of the division Proteobacteria (the Halomonas group for the heterotrophs and the genus Thioalkalivibrio for autotrophs). The third group included obligately autotrophic sulfur-oxidizing alkaliphilic bacteria able to utilize thiocyanate as a sole source of energy. These bacteria could be enriched on mineral medium with thiocyanate at pH 10. Growth with thiocyanate was usually much slower than growth with thiosulfate, although the biomass yield on thiocyanate was higher. Of the four strains isolated, the three vibrio-shaped strains were genetically closely related to the previously described sulfur-oxidizing alkaliphiles belonging to the genus Thioalkalivibrio. The rod-shaped isolate differed from the other isolates by its ability to accumulate large amounts of elemental sulfur inside its cells and by its ability to oxidize carbon disulfide. Despite its low DNA homology with and substantial phenotypic differences from the vibrio-shaped strains, this isolate also belonged to the genus Thioalkalivibrio according to a phylogenetic analysis. The heterotrophic and autotrophic alkaliphiles that grew with thiocyanate as an N source possessed a relatively high level of cyanase activity which converted cyanate (CNO-) to ammonia and CO2. On the other hand, cyanase activity either was absent or was present at very low levels in the autotrophic strains grown on thiocyanate as the sole energy and N source. As a result, large amounts of cyanate were found to accumulate in the media during utilization of thiocyanate at pH 10 in batch and thiocyanate-limited continuous cultures. This is a first direct proof of a "cyanate pathway" in pure cultures of thiocyanate-degrading bacteria. Since it is relatively stable under alkaline conditions, cyanate is likely to play a role as an N buffer that keeps the alkaliphilic bacteria safe from inhibition by free ammonia, which otherwise would reach toxic levels during dissimilatory degradation of thiocyanate.
Project description:Alkaline pretreatment has the potential to enhance the anaerobic digestion of lignocellulosic biomass to biogas. However, the elevated pH of the substrate may require alkalitolerant microbial communities for an effective digestion. Three mixed anaerobic lignocellulolytic cultures were enriched from sediments from two soda lakes with wheat straw as substrate under alkaline (pH 9) mesophilic (37°C) and thermophilic (55°C) conditions. The gas production of the three cultures ceased after 4 to 5 weeks, and the produced gas was composed of carbon dioxide and methane. The main liquid intermediates were acetate and propionate. The physiological behavior of the cultures was stable even after several transfers. The enrichment process was also followed by molecular fingerprinting (terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism) of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene and of the mcrA/mrtA functional gene for methanogens. The main shift in the microbial community composition occurred between the sediment samples and the first enrichment, whereas the structure was stable in the following transfers. The bacterial communities mainly consisted of Sphingobacteriales, Clostridiales and Spirochaeta, but differed at genus level. Methanothermobacter and Methanosarcina genera and the order Methanomicrobiales were predominant methanogenes in the obtained cultures. Additionally, single cellulolytic microorganisms were isolated from enrichment cultures and identified as members of the alkaliphilic or alkalitolerant genera. The results show that anaerobic alkaline habitats harbor diverse microbial communities, which can degrade lignocellulose effectively and are therefore a potential resource for improving anaerobic digestion.
Project description:Microbially induced calcium carbonate (CaCO3) precipitation (MICP) is a process where microbes induce condition favorable for CaCO3 formation through metabolic activities by increasing the pH or carbonate ions when calcium is near. The molecular and ecological basis of CaCO3 precipitating (CCP) bacteria has been poorly illuminated. Here, we showed that increased pH levels by deamination of amino acids is a driving force toward MICP using alkalitolerant Lysinibacillus boronitolerans YS11 as a model species of non-ureolytic CCP bacteria. This alkaline generation also facilitates the growth of neighboring alkaliphilic Bacillus sp. AK13, which could alter characteristics of MICP by changing the size and shape of CaCO3 minerals. Furthermore, we showed CaCO3 that precipitates earlier in an experiment modifies membrane rigidity of YS11 strain via upregulation of branched chain fatty acid synthesis. This work closely examines MICP conditions by deamination and the effect of MICP on cell membrane rigidity and crystal formation for the first time.
Project description:Fifty-eight terrestrial and salt-tolerant myxobacteria were isolated from the saline-alkaline soils collected from Xinjiang, China. Based on the morphologies and the 16S rRNA gene sequences, these isolates were assigned into 6 genera, Myxococcus, Cystobacter, Corallococcus, Sorangium, Nannocystis and Polyangium. All the strains grew better with 1% NaCl than without NaCl. Some Myxococcus strains were able to grow at 2% NaCl concentration, suggesting that these strains may be particular type of terrestrial myxobacteria.
Project description:Over 200 new sequences are generated for members of the genus Acremonium and related taxa including ribosomal small subunit sequences (SSU) for phylogenetic analysis and large subunit (LSU) sequences for phylogeny and DNA-based identification. Phylogenetic analysis reveals that within the Hypocreales, there are two major clusters containing multiple Acremonium species. One clade contains Acremonium sclerotigenum, the genus Emericellopsis, and the genus Geosmithia as prominent elements. The second clade contains the genera Gliomastixsensu stricto and Bionectria. In addition, there are numerous smaller clades plus two multi-species clades, one containing Acremonium strictum and the type species of the genus Sarocladium, and, as seen in the combined SSU/LSU analysis, one associated subclade containing Acremonium breve and related species plus Acremonium curvulum and related species. This sequence information allows the revision of three genera. Gliomastix is revived for five species, G. murorum, G. polychroma, G. tumulicola, G. roseogrisea, and G. masseei. Sarocladium is extended to include all members of the phylogenetically distinct A. strictum clade including the medically important A. kiliense and the protective maize endophyte A. zeae. Also included in Sarocladium are members of the phylogenetically delimited Acremonium bacillisporum clade, closely linked to the A. strictum clade. The genus Trichothecium is revised following the principles of unitary nomenclature based on the oldest valid anamorph or teleomorph name, and new combinations are made in Trichothecium for the tightly interrelated Acremonium crotocinigenum, Spicellum roseum, and teleomorph Leucosphaerinaindica. Outside the Hypocreales, numerous Acremonium-like species fall into the Plectosphaerellaceae, and A. atrogriseum falls into the Cephalothecaceae.