Metschnikowia noctiluminum sp. nov., Metschnikowia corniflorae sp. nov., and Candida chrysomelidarum sp. nov., isolated from green lacewings and beetles

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Fourteen yeast isolates belonging to the Metschnikowia clade were isolated from the digestive tracts of lacewings (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae), soldier beetles and leaf beetles (Coleoptera: Cantharidae and Chrysomelidae), and a caddisfly (Trichoptera: Hydropsychidae). The insect hosts were associated with sugary substances of plants, a typical habitat for yeasts in this clade. Based on DNA sequence comparisons and phenetic characters, the yeasts were identified as Candida picachoensis, Candida pimensis, and four undescribed taxa. Among the undescribed taxa, three yeasts were distinguished from one another and from other described taxa by nucleotide differences in the ribosomal DNA repeat, which were sufficient to consider them as new species. Two of the novel yeast species are described as Metschnikowia noctiluminum (NRRL Y-27753(T)) and M. cornifloraespp. nov. (NRRL Y-27750(T)) based in part on production of needle-shaped ascospores, which are found in most Metschnikowia species. Sexual reproduction was not observed in the third new yeast, Candida chrysomelidarumsp. nov. (NRRL Y-27749(T)). A fourth isolate, NRRL Y-27752, was not significantly distinct from Metschnikowia viticola and Candida kofuensis to be described as a new species. Phylogenetic analysis of the D1/D2 loop sequences placed M. noctiluminum within the M. viticola clade, while C. chrysomelidarum was a sister taxon of Candida rancensis. Metschnikowia corniflorae was phylogenetically distinct from other new species and fell outside of the large-spored Metschnikowia group.

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Mycological research

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