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Abstract Detail

Symbioses: Plant, Animal, and Microbe Interactions

Koch, Rachel A. [1], Aime, M. Catherine [2].

Guyanagaster necrorhizus harbors nitrogen-fixing bacteria—fitness implications for this dispersal-limited fungus.

Bacterial-fungal symbioses are likely ubiquitous throughout the fungal tree of life, but the fitness impacts of these associations remain unknown in many instances. The recently discovered gasteromycete, Guyanagaster necrorhizus, was found to consistently harbor bacteria in its basidiome. To determine if these bacteria play a role in the fitness of G. necrorhizus, we first characterized them by sequencing the bacterial-specific 16S region amplified from G. necrorhizus DNA extracted from fresh tissue. Basidiomes for characterization included ones extending across all collection sites and at all of the various maturation stages. All bacteria identified from G. necrorhizus basidiomes were from a single family, the Enterobacteriaceae. These bacteria are often important nitrogen-fixing mutualists. To determine if the bacteria harbored by G. necrorhizus are capable of fixing nitrogen, a subunit of the gene coding for the nitrogenase enzyme—the enzyme responsible for converting atmospheric nitrogen to useable forms—was targeted using traditional PCR. The gene was detected in all of the mature basidiomes and inconsistently in the immature basidiomes. The possible fitness benefits to this fungus for harboring bacteria will be discussed, especially in regards to spore dispersal.

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1 - Purdue University, Botany and Plant Pathology, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN, 47907, USA
2 - Purdue University, Botany & Plant Pathology, 915 W. State Street, Botany & Plant Pathology, West Lafayette, IN, 47907, USA

fungal biology
mushroom evolution
tri-kingdom mutualism.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Session: 36
Location: Salon 5/The Shaw Conference Centre
Date: Tuesday, July 28th, 2015
Time: 8:15 AM
Number: 36002
Abstract ID:410
Candidate for Awards:MSA Best Oral Presentation Award by a Graduate Student

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