How do fungi remain hidden in deep-sea sediments?

Samir R. Damare* , Chandralata Raghukumar

Author address: 

Biological Oceanography Division, MARINEBIOTECH, CSIR- National Institute of Oceanography, Dona Paula, Goa - 403004, India


The presence of fungi, ubiquitous eukaryotes in terrestrial environment, was often questioned in the marine environments. One single publication (1944) influenced the development of marine mycology more than any other paper, namely, "œMarine Fungi: Their Taxonomy and Biology" by Barghoorn & Linder. Deep-sea environment being characterized by different extremities of pressure, temperature and scarcity of nutrients was overlooked for presence of fungi. Sporadic reports about the presence of fungi in deep- sea environments have appeared. With the developments in detection methods, there are more reports being published about the uncultured fungi from different oceans. Here we are discussing the apparent reason for poor detection and reporting of fungi from deep-sea sediments. Humic material in terrestrial soil is known to combine with soil particles to form microaggregates. Fungal hyphae further act on these as binding agents to form macroaggregates by trapping fine particles into the microaggregates thereby remaining "œhidden" from the most conventional technique microscopic techniques used for detection. We show here how fungi might produce macroaggregation de novo from dissolved organic matter (DOM) under simulated deep-sea conditions. Thus, fungi are not only hidden in such deep- sea sediment aggregates, but may also be actively involved in their formation.

abstract No: 


Full conference title: 

Asian Mycological Congress 2013 and the 13th International Marine and Freshwater Mycology Symposium
    • AMC 2013