Katia Sciuto, Carlo Andreoli, Nicoletta Rascio, Nicoletta La Rocca, Isabella Moro
Department of Biology, University of Padova, Italy
Cyanobacteria (phylum Cyanophyta/Cyanobacteria, class Cyanophyceae) are among the most widespread organisms and are able to adapt themselves to different extreme environments. These micro-organisms have an important ecological role, given their ability to perform oxygenic photosynthesis, and are employed in different fields based on their ability to produce several bioactive compounds. Their prokaryotic nature, the presence of many cryptic species, and the coexistence of different nomenclature systems make the taxonomic identification of cyanobacteria particularly difficult. Moreover, for several species, the original reference strains (holotypes) are lacking. Increasingly, authors are using a polyphasic approach to characterize cyanobacteria, while typification is a recent trend that is being used to solve the problem of missing holotypes in other micro-organisms. Here we focus on a filamentous cyanobacterium, isolated from the Euganean Thermal District (Padova, Italy) and temporarily named strain ETS-02, using a polyphasic approach that includes morphological, ultrastructural, biochemical (pigment and fatty acid content), physiological (nitrogen fixation), and genetic (16S rRNA, 16S–23S ITS, cpcB-IGS-cpcA, rpoC1, gyrB, rbcL, nifD loci) analyses. The description of Phormidium cf. irriguum CCALA 759 as the epitype of Phormidium irriguum was also used to complete the characterization of strain ETS-02.