DNA metabarcoding uncovers fungal diversity in soils of protected and non-protected areas on Deception Island, Antarctica
We assessed soil fungal diversity at two sites on Deception Island, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica using DNA metabarcoding analysis. The first site was a relatively undisturbed area, and the second was much more heavily impacted by research and tourism. We detected 346 fungal amplicon sequence variants dominated by the phyla Ascomycota, Basidiomycota, Mortierellomycota and Chytridiomycota. We also detected taxa belonging to the rare phyla Mucoromycota and Rozellomycota, which have been difficult to detect in Antarctica by traditional isolation methods. Cladosporium sp., Pseudogymnoascus roseus, Leotiomycetes sp. 2, Penicillium sp., Mortierella sp. 1, Mortierella sp. 2, Pseudogymnoascus appendiculatus and Pseudogymnoascus sp. were the most dominant fungi. In addition, 440,153 of the total of 1,214,875 reads detected could be classified only at the level of Fungi. In both sampling areas the DNA of opportunistic, phytopathogenic and symbiotic fungi were detected, which might have been introduced by human activities, transported by birds or wind, and/or represent resident fungi not previously reported from Antarctica. Further long-term studies are required to elucidate how biological colonization in the island may be affected by climatic changes and/or other anthropogenic influences.
Authors: Rosa, Luiz Henrique, da Silva, Thamar Holanda, Ogaki, Mayara Baptistucci, Pinto, Otávio Henrique Bezerra, Stech, Michael, Convey, Peter ORCID record for Peter Convey, Carvalho-Silva, Micheline, Rosa, Carlos Augusto, Câmara, Paulo E.A.S.