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Two new cellulolytic fungal species isolated from a 19th-century art collection.

Scientific reports (2018-05-12)
Carolina Coronado-Ruiz, Roberto Avendaño, Efraín Escudero-Leyva, Geraldine Conejo-Barboza, Priscila Chaverri, Max Chavarría

The archive of the Universidad de Costa Rica maintains a nineteenth-century French collection of drawings and lithographs in which the biodeterioration by fungi is rampant. Because of nutritional conditions in which these fungi grew, we suspected that they possessed an ability to degrade cellulose. In this work our goal was to isolate and identify the fungal species responsible for the biodegradation of a nineteenth-century art collection and determine their cellulolytic activity. Fungi were isolated using potato-dextrose-agar (PDA) and water-agar with carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC). The identification of the fungi was assessed through DNA sequencing (nrDNA ITS and α-actin regions) complemented with morphological analyses. Assays for cellulolytic activity were conducted with Gram's iodine as dye. Nineteen isolates were obtained, of which seventeen were identified through DNA sequencing to species level, belonging mainly to genera Arthrinium, Aspergillus, Chaetomium, Cladosporium, Colletotrichum, Penicillium and Trichoderma. For two samples that could not be identified through their ITS and α-actin sequences, a morphological analysis was conducted; they were identified as new species, named Periconia epilithographicola sp. nov. and Coniochaeta cipronana sp. nov. Qualitative tests showed that the fungal collection presents important cellulolytic activity.

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3-(Benzyldimethylammonio)propanesulfonate, BioXtra, ≥99.0% (HPCE)