Poster Presentation Australian Microbial Ecology 2017

The association and distribution of yeasts with drosophilid insect vectors in natural environments (#137)

Kate Howell 1 , Phil Ganter 2 , Delphine Sicard 3 , Thibault Nidelet 3
  1. University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC, Australia
  2. Tennessee State University, Nashville, TN, 37209 USA
  3. UMR1083 Sciences pour l'Oenologie, INRA, Montpellier, 34060, France

The abundance and distribution of the industrially important yeast, Saccharomcyes cerevisiae has been exploited to understand genomic evolution, natural history and ecology. A global overview of yeasts associated with drosophilids (Diptera, Drosophilidae) was performed to gain insights into the occurrence, distribution and habitats of yeasts beyond S. cerevisiae. We catalogued the occurrence of yeast species with drosophilids across different habitats in published scientific reports. Many yeast species have been described in association with only one drosophilid in only one habitat, with D. affinis hosting 14 yeast species not catalogued elsewhere. S. cerevisiae was the only yeast reported in all habitats (cactus, flower, forest, fruit and mushroom) while weakly fermentative yeast Hanseniaspora uvarum was reported in all 20 fly species. Drosopholids isolated from fruit ecosystems carry 18 different yeast species and could be an important reservoir and vector of yeasts. Despite the input data being skewed towards ‘presence-only data’ rather than absence in a particular yeast/drosophila/habitat combination, it is likely that D. melanogaster and D. hydei are facilitators of yeast dispersal in wine and grape environments due to the co-occurrence of yeast species found in these ecosystems.