Comparative genomics reveals high biological diversity and specific adaptations in the industrially and medically important fungal genus Aspergillus

Vries, Ronald P. de and Riley, Robert and Wiebenga, Ad and Aguilar-Osorio, Guillermo and Amillis, Sotiris and Akemi Uchima, Cristiane and Anderluh, Gregor and Asaollahi, Mojtaba and Askin, Marion and Barry, Kerrie and Battaglia, Evy and Bayram, Ozgur and Benocci, Tiziano and Braus-Stromeyer, Susanna A. and Caldana, Camila and Cánovas, David and Cerqueira, Gustavo C. and Chen, Fusheng and Chen, Wanping and Choi, Cindy and Clum, Alicia and Corrêa dos Santos, Renato Augusto and Lima Damásio, André Ricardo de and Diallinas, George and Emri, Tamás and Fekete, Erzébet and Flipphi, Michel and Freyburg, Susanne and Gallo, Antonia and Gournas, Christos and Habgood, Rob and Hainaut, Matthieu and Harispe, Maria Laura and Henrissat, Bernard and Hildén, Kristiina S. and Hope, Ryan and Hossain, Abeer and Karabika, Eugenia and Karaffa, Levente and Karanyi, Zsolt and Krasevec, Nada and Kuo, Alan and Kusch, Harald and LaButti, Kurt and Lagendijk, Ellen L. and Lapidus, Alla and Levasseur, Anthony and Lindquist, Erika and Lipzen, Anna and Logrieco, Antonio F. and MacCabe, Andrew and Mäkela, Miia R. and Malavazi, Iran and Melin, Petter and Meyer, Vera and Mielnichuk, Natalia and Miskei, Márton and Molnár, Ákos P. and Mulé, Giuseppina and Ngan, Chew Yee and Orejas, Margarita and Orosz, Erzsébet and Ouedraogo, Jean Paul and Overkamp, Karin M. and Park, Hee-Soo and Perrone, Giancarlo and Piumi, Francois and Punt, Peter J. and Ram, Arthur F.J. and Ramon, Ana and Rauscher, Stefan and Record, Eric and Riaño-Pachón, Diego Mauricio and Robert, Vincent and Röhrig, Julian and Ruller, Roberto and Salamov, Asaf and Salih, Nadhira S. and Samson, Rob A. and Sándor, Erzsébet and Sanguinetti, Manuel and Schütze, Tabea and Sepčić, Kristina and Shelest, Ekaterina and Sherlock, Gavin and Sophianopoulou, Vicky and Squina, Fabio M. and Sun, Hui and Susca, Antonia and Todd, Richard B. and Tsang, Adrian and Unkles, Shiela E. and Wiele, Nathalie van de and Rossen-Uffink, Diana van and Velasco de Castro Oliveira, Juliana and Vesth, Tammi C. and Visser, Jaap and Yu, Jae-Hyuk and Zhou, Miaomiao and Andersen, Mikael R. and Archer, David B. and Baker, Scott E. and Benoit, Isabelle and Brakhage, Axel A. and Braus, Gerhard H. and Fischer, Reinhard and Frisvad, Jens C. and Goldman, Gustavo H. and Houbraken, Jos and Oakley, Berl and Pócsi, István and Scazzocchio, Claudio and Seiboth, Bernhard and vanKuyk, Patricia A. and Wortman, Jennifer and Dyer, Paul S. and Grigoriev, Igor V. (2017) Comparative genomics reveals high biological diversity and specific adaptations in the industrially and medically important fungal genus Aspergillus. Genome Biology . ISSN 1474-760X (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Background: The fungal genus Aspergillus is of critical importance to humankind. Species include those with industrial applications, important pathogens of humans, animals and crops, a source of potent carcinogenic contaminants of food, and an important genetic model. The genome sequences of eight aspergilli have already been explored to investigate aspects of fungal biology, raising questions about evolution and specialization within this genus.

Results: We have generated genome sequences for ten novel, highly diverse Aspergillus species and compared these in detail to sister and more distant genera. Comparative studies of key aspects of fungal biology, including primary and secondary metabolism, stress response, biomass degradation, and signal transduction, revealed both conservation and diversity among the species. Observed genomic differences were validated with experimental studies. This revealed several highlights, such as the potential for sex in asexual species, organic acid production genes being a key feature of black aspergilli, alternative approaches for degrading plant biomass, and indications for the genetic basis of stress response. A genome-wide phylogenetic analysis demonstrated in detail the relationship of the newly genome sequenced species with other aspergilli.

Conclusions: Many aspects of biological differences between fungal species cannot be explained by current knowledge obtained from genome sequences. The comparative genomics and experimental study, presented here, allows for the first time a genus-wide view of the biological diversity of the aspergilli and in many, but not all, cases linked genome differences to phenotype. Insights gained could be exploited for biotechnological and medical applications of fungi.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Genome sequencing, Comparative genomics, Fungal biology
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Life Sciences
Identification Number: 10.1186/s13059-017-1151-0
Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 14 Feb 2017 13:53
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2017 22:16
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/40582

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