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Geomicrobiology of Schizophyllum commune
Institution: Institute of Microbiology
Microbial communication
Neugasse 25, room 202
07743 Jena
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Telephone: +49 (0)3641/949299

Julia Kirtzel


Black shales (BS) are pelitic, sedimentary rocks with a high content of organic carbon. In former studies it has been shown that some fungi are able to degrade persistent carbon sources by exoenzymes. The basidiomycete Schizophyllum commune excretes unspecific laccases for the degradation of lignin. Because of the wide substrate specificity of these enzymes, S. commune can mobilize the organic carbon of BS and convert it into a bioavailable form.

In this study, the interactions of this fungus with the stone and the molecular mechanisms involved in this processes will be investigated. With an un-targeted transcriptome study the identification and if applicable the expression of genes which are regulated by fungal growth on BS will be researched. A proteome research of S. commune will show which secreted proteins are mandatory for its growth on stone surface and with it for the mobilization of carbon. Based on these results, an overexpression or deletion of selective genes will allow insights into properties of the protein and its influences on the organism.

S. commune is best suitable for studies of the proteome because of its sequenced genome. Presumably the genome of some other fungi will also be sequenced in the future. If the sequences are available, another part of the study is to investigate the secretome of these fungi and to compare the proteins involved in carbon mobilization with these of S. commune.

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