A phylogenetic analysis was conducted upon ten strains of the psychrophobic yeast species Arxiozyma telluris using nuclear rDNA (18S and 26S) and mitochondrial cytochrome-c oxidase subunit II (COX2) gene sequences. Strains examined included those described originally as Candida slooffii, Torulopsis bovina (= Candida bovina) and Torulopsis pintolopesii (= Candida pintolopesii), which are all currently accepted as synonyms of Arxiozyma telluris. Comparative 18S rDNA sequence analysis showed that these strains formed a genealogically highly related group, which was phylogenetically distinct from any other ascomycetous species studied. The results showed that A. telluris, as currently described, appears to be composed of a complex of closely related but nevertheless separate taxa. rDNA and COX2 gene sequence data revealed that CBS 1787T, the type strain of C. pintolopesii, the currently recognized asexual form (anamorph) of A. telluris, along with strains CBS 2676 and CBS 2985 formed a distinct taxon that is phylogenetically separate from A. telluris. Similarly, the sequence data also showed that C. slooffii is a distinct taxon and support the reinstatement of this species. However, with regard to the relationship between the type strains of A. telluris (CBS 2685T) and C bovina (CBS 2760T), discrepancies were observed between the rDNA and COX2 sequence datasets, and these results are discussed in more detail.


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