Diversity of culturable marine filamentous fungi from deep-sea hydrothermal vents

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SummaryAs now very few studies have been carried out on deep-sea marine fungi, this field remains relatively unknown. However, their presence inside benthic microbial eukaryotes at deep-sea vents was recently pointed out from molecular microbial ecology studies. We report here an attempt to describe the culturable part of mycological communities in deep-sea vent ecosystems that is an important step in understanding their diversity, abundance and function. Physiological characterization revealed strains that are more or less adapted to deep-sea conditions. Those results suggest the presence of true marine organisms and other more ubiquitous. Phylogenetical characterization highly correlated to physiological data revealed the presence of fungi that have been previously described and unknown ones until now, belonging to new taxonomic groups. This survey encourages for further work in order to complete descriptions and also to describe the ecological role of these organisms in such extreme environments.

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