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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Uncultivated thermophiles: current status and spotlight on 'Aigarchaeota'.

  • Author(s): Hedlund, Brian P;
  • Murugapiran, Senthil K;
  • Alba, Timothy W;
  • Levy, Asaf;
  • Dodsworth, Jeremy A;
  • Goertz, Gisele B;
  • Ivanova, Natalia;
  • Woyke, Tanja
  • et al.

Meta-analysis of cultivation-independent sequence data shows that geothermal systems host an abundance of novel organisms, representing a vast unexplored phylogenetic and functional diversity among yet-uncultivated thermophiles. A number of thermophiles have recently been interrogated using metagenomic and/or single-cell genomic approaches, including members of taxonomic groups that inhabit both thermal and non-thermal environments, such as 'Acetothermia' (OP1) and 'Atribacteria' (OP9/JS1), as well as the exclusively thermophilic lineages 'Korarchaeota', 'Calescamantes' (EM19), 'Fervidibacteria' (OctSpA1-106), and 'Aigarchaeota' (HWCG-I). The 'Aigarchaeota', a sister lineage to the Thaumarchaeota, likely includes both hyperthermophiles and moderate thermophiles. They inhabit terrestrial, marine, and subsurface thermal environments and comprise at least nine genus-level lineages, several of which are globally distributed.

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