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FEMS Yeast Res. 2004 Jan;4(4-5):557-61.

Reinstatement of Rhodotorula colostri (Castelli) Lodder and Rhodotorula crocea Shifrine & Phaff, former synonyms of Rhodotorula aurantiaca (Saito) Lodder.

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  • 1Centro de Recursos Microbiológicos (CREM), Biotechnology Unit, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Quinta da Torre, 2829-516 Caparica, Portugal.


Rhodotorula aurantiaca (Saito) Lodder is an anamorphic basidiomycetous yeast species that belongs to the so-called "Erythrobasidium lineage" of the Urediniomycetes, according to molecular phylogenetic studies based on nucleotide sequence analyses of different ribosomal DNA regions. In the most recent editions of the yeast taxonomy treatises the species Rhodotorula colostri (Castelli) Lodder and Rhodotorula crocea Shifrine & Phaff were listed as synonyms of R. aurantiaca. Taxonomic heterogeneity within R. aurantiaca was demonstrated in a study based on whole-cell protein profiles and is also hinted at by the observed differences in physiological and biochemical characteristics among the different strains under that species name. We determined partial nucleotide sequences of the 26S rRNA gene (D1/D2 domains) of strains maintained in the CBS culture collection under R. aurantiaca, including the type strains of its synonyms. The results showed that R. colostri and R. crocea are clearly distinct from R. aurantiaca and from any other currently recognised basidiomycetous yeast species. Furthermore, phylogenetic analysis of the sequence data placed the former two species in separate lineages of the Microbotryomycetidae: R. colostri in the "ruineniae clade" (Sporidiobolus lineage or Sporidiobolales) and R. crocea loosely linked to Rhodotorula javanica (Microbotryum lineage).

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