Diversity in the yeast Cryptococcus albidus and related species as revealed by ribosomal DNA sequence analysis

Àlvaro Fonseca, Gloria Scorzetti, Jack W. Fell

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95 Citations (Scopus)


Evidence accumulated from studies based on physiological, biochemical, and molecular characteristics has pointed to the heterogeneity of the ubiquitous anamorphic basidiomycetous yeast species Cryptococcus albidus (Saito) Skinner, with its current varieties and synonyms. The taxonomic status of this species has not been reappraised because different studies, mostly involving limited numbers of strains, have not been integrated. To assess species diversity within the clade containing Cryptococcus albidus and other phylogenetically related Cryptococcus and Filobasidium species, we determined ribosomal DNA (rDNA) sequences of 69 strains from the 5' end of the 26S gene, D1/D2 region, and in some cases, the non-coding ITS2 region. Analysis of the sequence data together with available physiological, biochemical, and molecular characteristics, showed the segregation of C. albidus into at least 12 species, leading to the elevation of former varieties to the rank of species (C. aerius, C. diffluens), the reinstatement of synonyms (C. liquefaciens, C. terricola), and the proposal of new species (C. arrabidensis, C. chernovii, C. cylindricus, C. oeirensis, C. phenolicus, C. saitoi, C. uzbekistanensis, C. wieringae). The overall analyses of the results argue in favour of the use of rDNA sequence data to improve species delineation when integrated with other available physiological and molecular characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-27
Number of pages21
JournalCanadian Journal Of Microbiology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2000


  • Basidiomycetous yeasts
  • Cryptococcus albidus
  • Molecular systematics
  • Ribosomal DNA
  • Taxonomy


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