An undescribed anamorphic yeast species of ascomycetous affinity, for which the name Candida tartarivorans is proposed, was isolated from dried wine lees in Portugal using a selective medium with L(+)-tartaric acid as the sole source of carbon and energy. The single isolate (IGC 4854T) showed the following characteristics: sympodial holoblastic conidiogenesis, absence of asci with ascospores, a negative colour reaction with Diazonium Blue B, production of elaborate pseudomycelium and ability to grow with inositol as sole source of carbon. Analysis of the physiological data pointed to a close relationship with other inositol-assimilating taxa, namely the genera Arxula, Stephanoascus, Sympodiomyces, Zygoascus and selected Candida species. Comparative analysis of the D1/D2 variable domain of the 26S rRNA gene of all available sequences for ascomycetous yeasts showed that strain IGC 4854T did not match with any other species in the database. The closest relative was Candida auringiensis Santa Maria, but the two species differed in 24 nucleotide positions. A description of the new species is given.


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