About this Research Topic
Fungi are an essential component of various aquatic ecosystems. They play important roles in biogeochemical cycles as saprobes, endophytes and pathogens. Recent advances in next-generation sequencing and informatics, including development of sequencing platforms with superior capabilities, flexibility of short and long-read sequencing, increase in data output and decrease in cost per base, generation of synthetic long reads and a reference free analysis offer exciting opportunities to revolutionize the aquatic fungal research. This Research Topic aims to provide a platform to showcase fungal research on diversity, ecology, phylogeny, and taxonomy of aquatic fungi.
The following subtopics are presented as examples:
- Fungi are ubiquitous in nature. They have been recovered from “extreme” environments such as the deep-sea, hot-springs, polar regions, suboxic/ anoxic pockets of aquatic habitats, to mention a few. Scientists have always been fascinated by how these fungi exist and thrive in those harsh environmental conditions. What are the genetic, morphological and physiological adaptations that have enabled fungi to colonize such habitats?
- Continuous refinement of the taxonomy of aquatic fungi is warranted to evolve a stable, natural classification system. There are thousands of aquatic fungi waiting to be discovered and described as novel taxa. Diversity of fungi in many aquatic habitats is poorly understood. Can we effectively design artificial media to culture rare fungi using information on their genetic, transcriptomic and proteomic novelties? Can a sustained research on diversity of aquatic fungi demonstrate that the number of fungal species is much higher than expected? In this Research Topic we strongly encourage research papers that improve our understanding of those fungal species that to date we have only found indirect evidence for.
- Correct identification of fungal species can be problematic, if the taxonomic characters are phylogenetically uninformative. Can we develop culture-independent identification systems for various groups of aquatic fungi? Papers pertaining to development of reliable DNA-based identification tools, especially for environmental samples, are most welcome.
Review papers are also welcome.
Keywords: aquatic fungal diversity, next generation sequencing, NGS, fungal taxonomy, extremophiles
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.