Chemotaxonomic characterisation of the thaumarchaeal lipidome

Author(s)
Felix J Elling , Martin Könneke , Graeme W Nicol , Michaela Stieglmeier , Barbara Bayer , Eva Spieck , José R de la Torre , Kevin W Becker , Michael Thomm , James I Prosser , Gerhard J Herndl , Christa Schleper , Kai-Uwe Hinrichs
Abstract

Thaumarchaeota are globally distributed and abundant microorganisms occurring in diverse habitats and thus represent a major source of archaeal lipids. The scope of lipids as taxonomic markers in microbial ecological studies is limited by the scarcity of comparative data on the membrane lipid composition of cultivated representatives, including the phylum Thaumarchaeota. Here, we comprehensively describe the core and intact polar lipid (IPL) inventory of ten ammonia-oxidising thaumarchaeal cultures representing all four characterized phylogenetic clades. IPLs of these thaumarchaeal strains are generally similar and consist of membrane-spanning, glycerol dibiphytanyl glycerol tetraethers with monoglycosyl, diglycosyl, phosphohexose and hexose-phosphohexose headgroups. However, the relative abundances of these IPLs and their core lipid compositions differ systematically between the phylogenetic subgroups, indicating high potential for chemotaxonomic distinction of thaumarchaeal clades. Comparative lipidomic analyses of 19 euryarchaeal and crenarchaeal strains suggested that the lipid methoxy archaeol is synthesized exclusively by Thaumarchaeota and may thus represent a diagnostic lipid biomarker for this phylum. The unprecedented diversity of the thaumarchaeal lipidome with 118 different lipids suggests that membrane lipid composition and adaptation mechanisms in Thaumarchaeota are more complex than previously thought and include unique lipids with as yet unresolved properties.

Organisation(s)
Department of Ecogenomics and Systems Biology , Department of Limnology and Bio-Oceanography
Journal
Environmental Microbiology
Volume
19
Pages
2681-2700
No. of pages
20
ISSN
1462-2912
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1111/1462-2920.13759
Publication date
07-2017
Publication status
Published
Peer reviewed
Yes
Austrian Fields of Science 2012
106022 Microbiology
Keywords
Archaea, Biomarkers, Ecosystem, Geologic Sediments, Glyceryl Ethers, Membrane Lipids, Phylogeny, Soil Microbiology, Water Microbiology, Journal Article
Portal url
https://ucris.univie.ac.at/portal/en/publications/chemotaxonomic-characterisation-of-the-thaumarchaeal-lipidome(669f4d50-dfba-45cc-9024-af9efea94bd1).html