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Abstract Detail


Ireland, Abigail [1], Smith, Zane [2], Hughes, Karen [1].

Culturing Pseudogymnoascus from post-wildfire soils of the Great Smoky Mountains.

Ascomycete Pseudogymnoascus is a globally-distributed, diverse genus of soil fungi, the diversity of which has scarcely been explored. However, the impact of Pseudogymnoascus destructans, causal agent of White-nose Syndrome which has killed over 6.5 million bats in the US alone, demonstrates the need for further investigation of native, congeneric diversity. Following the 2016 Great Smoky Mountain wildfires,   soil samples were collected monthly for two years and sequenced via next-gen MiSeq sequencing. Preliminary data revealed incidence of undescribed Pseudogymnoascus primarily within burned areas, with 97% of detected sequences from burn sites and 3% within unburned sites of similar strata. This data thus prompted an inquiry into the diversity of Pseudogymnoascus from burn sites in order to compare the fire-responsive taxa to known members of the genus. A pilot study was conducted on frozen soil samples two years post-collection from the burn site that had shown the highest incidence of Pseudogymnoascus sequences, Balsam Quiet Walkway (QWB). Soil samples from QWB representing four dates after the burn were serially diluted and plated on acidified rose bengal agar, from which Pseudogymnoascus colonies were successfully cultured and identified through rDNA sequencing (ITS1F and ITS4R primers). Sequenced isolates have been confirmed to conform to the same phylogenetic clade in which the MiSeq data were found.Additional sequencing of   RPB2 (primers RPB2-7cF, and RPB2-11aR) and TEF1 (primers EF1-983F, EF1-2218R) was performed and a preliminary multigene phylogeny was established that suggests QWB isolates may represent a new branch of Pseudogymnoascus sister to P. palmeri and the P.  roseus complex.

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1 - University of Tennessee Knoxville, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, 1406 Circle Drive, Knoxville, TN, 37916, USA
2 - University of Tennessee Knoxville, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, 1406 Circle Dr., Knoxville, TN, 37916, USA

Great Smoky Mountains

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: MYP1, Mycology Posters I
Location: /
Date: Monday, July 19th, 2021
Time: 5:00 PM(EDT)
Number: MYP1017
Abstract ID:1132
Candidate for Awards:MSA Best Poster Presentation Award by a Graduate Student

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