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Research in microbiology

Effects of hydrostatic pressure on yeasts isolated from deep-sea hydrothermal vents.


PMID 26226336

Abstract

Hydrostatic pressure plays a significant role in the distribution of life in the biosphere. Knowledge of deep-sea piezotolerant and (hyper)piezophilic bacteria and archaea diversity has been well documented, along with their specific adaptations to cope with high hydrostatic pressure (HHP). Recent investigations of deep-sea microbial community compositions have shown unexpected micro-eukaryotic communities, mainly dominated by fungi. Molecular methods such as next-generation sequencing have been used for SSU rRNA gene sequencing to reveal fungal taxa. Currently, a difficult but fascinating challenge for marine mycologists is to create deep-sea marine fungus culture collections and assess their ability to cope with pressure. Indeed, although there is no universal genetic marker for piezoresistance, physiological analyses provide concrete relevant data for estimating their adaptations and understanding the role of fungal communities in the abyss. The present study investigated morphological and physiological responses of fungi to HHP using a collection of deep-sea yeasts as a model. The aim was to determine whether deep-sea yeasts were able to tolerate different HHP and if they were metabolically active. Here we report an unexpected taxonomic-based dichotomic response to pressure with piezosensitve ascomycetes and piezotolerant basidiomycetes, and distinct morphological switches triggered by pressure for certain strains.