Role of Basidiomycete Small Molecules on Habitat-sharing Microbes
Filamentous fungi, such as asco- and basidiomycetes are producers of bioactive secondary metabolites. Their low molecular weight compounds are recognized to play a crucial role in the organismic interactions between the producer and the microflora surrounding it in its natural environment. Not only does co-culture stimulate secondary metabolism: it is established that the physical contact of microorganisms, specifically between streptomycetes and Aspergillus hyphae, induces otherwise completely unexpressed (?silent?) natural product biosynthesis loci, thereby enabling an altered and diversified secondary metabolism.
This project focuses on the consequences for basidiomycete secondary metabolism when microbial communities are present. Ecology-driven genome mining for low molecular weight products will be implemented to basidiomycetes to elucidate the products of yet cryptic pathways.