AME 58:215-228 (2010)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/ame01361

Novel uncultivated labyrinthulomycetes revealed by 18S rDNA sequences from seawater and sediment samples

Enixy Collado-Mercado, JoAnn C. Radway, Jackie L. Collier*

School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, New York 11794-5000, USA
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: Labyrinthulomycetes (Labyrinthulea) are ubiquitous marine osmoheterotrophic protists that appear to be important in decomposition of both allochthonous and autochthonous organic matter. We used a cultivation-independent method based on the labyrinthulomycete-specific primer LABY-Y to PCR amplify, clone, and sequence 68 nearly full-length 18S rDNA amplicons from 4 sediment and 3 seawater samples collected in estuarine habitats around Long Island, New York, USA. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that all 68 amplicons belonged to the Labyrinthulea. Only 15 of the 68 amplicons belonged to the thraustochytrid phylogenetic group (Thraustochytriidae). None of these 15 were similar to cultivated strains, and 11 formed a novel group. The remaining 53 amplicons belonged either to the labyrinthulid phylogenetic group (Labyrinthulidae) or to other families of Labyrinthulea that have not yet been described. Of these amplicons, 37 were closely related to previously cultivated Aplanochytrium spp. and Oblongichytrium spp. Members of these 2 genera were also cultivated from 1 of the sediment samples. The 16 other amplicons were not closely related to cultivated strains, and 15 belonged to 5 groups of apparently novel labyrinthulomycetes. Most of the novel groups of amplicons also contained environmental sequences from surveys of protist diversity using universal 18S rDNA primers. Because the primer LABY-Y is biased against several groups of labyrinthulomycetes, particularly among the thraustochytrids, these results may underestimate the undiscovered diversity of labyrinthulomycetes.


KEY WORDS: Aplanochytrid · Labyrinthulid · Thraustochytrid · Small subunit ribosomal RNA · SSU rRNA


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Cite this article as: Collado-Mercado E, Radway JC, Collier JL (2010) Novel uncultivated labyrinthulomycetes revealed by 18S rDNA sequences from seawater and sediment samples. Aquat Microb Ecol 58:215-228. https://doi.org/10.3354/ame01361

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