Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/31/2013
Publication Date: 5/31/2013
Citation: Geiser, D.M., Kang, S., Ward, T.J., O'Donnell, K., Robert, V., Crous, P.W. 2013. The impact of culture collections on molecular identification, taxonomy, and solving real problems. Meeting Abstract. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Among the fungi, Fusarium has stood out as a major focus for culture collection resource development over the last century. This has facilitated unprecedented molecular taxonomic advancements, which in turn has led to problem solving in plant pathology, mycotoxicology, medical mycology, and basic research. One high impact advance has been the development and implementation of molecular identification resources. The first such tool developed was FUSARIUM-ID, a simple basic local alignment search tool (BLAST)-enabled database that targeted a portion of the translation elongation factor 1-alpha gene for species-level identifications. Since then, FUSARIUM-ID has been expanded to include multilocus data from ~2000 Fusarium isolates, and a parallel platform (Fusarium MLST) has been implemented at the CBS-KNAW Biodiversity Centre in The Netherlands. A crucial benefit of these database tools is that all sequences are connected to vouchered, publicly available cultures, unlike GenBank, which has little or no control over accession information associated with sequence data or the availability of cultures. Future plans for Fusarium culture collections and associated cyber infrastructure include integration of genomic data and social networking tools. The epidemiological investigation of the 2005-06 outbreak of contact lens-associated fusarial eye infections will be presented as an example illustrating the impact of collections-enabled molecular systematics.