Scheffersomyces cryptocercus: a new xylose-fermenting yeast associated with the gut of wood roaches and new combinations in the Sugiyamaella yeast clade

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The gut of wood-feeding insects is a microhabitat for a specialized community of microbes, including bacteria and several groups of eukaryotes such as nematodes, parabasalids and fungi. The characterization of gut yeast communities from a variety of insects has shown that certain yeasts often are associated with the insects. The gut of wood-feeding insects is rich in ascomycete yeasts and in particular xylose-fermenting (X-F) and assimilating yeasts have been consistently present in the gut of lignicolous insects. The objective of this study was the characterization of the yeast flora from the gut of the wood roach Cryptocercus sp. (Blattodea: Cryptocercidae). Five wood roaches were collected along the Appalachian Trail near the border between Tennessee and North Carolina, USA. We isolated 18 yeast strains from the wood roaches identified as Sugiyamaella paludigena and Sugiyamaella lignohabitans, xylose-assimilating yeasts, and Scheffersomyces cryptocercus (NRRL Y-48824(T) = CBS 12658) a new species of X-F yeast. The presence of X-F and certain non X-F yeasts in the gut of the subsocial wood roach Cryptocercus sp. extends the previous findings of associations between certain ascomycete yeasts and lignicolous insects. New combinations were made for 13 asexual members of the Sugiyamaella clade.

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