D’Almeida R.E.1, García M.E.2, Pérez M.F.2, Farías M.E.2, Dib J.R.2,3 2019. Novel nematode species in living stromatolites in the Andean Puna // Invertebrate Zoology. Vol.16. No.3: 211–218 [in English].

1 Instituto Superior de Investigaciones Biológicas – Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. T4000 Tucumбn, Argentina. E-mail: rominadalmeida@gmail.com

2 Planta Piloto de Procesos Industriales Microbiológicos – Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. T4000 Tucumán, Argentina. E-mail: marciaeg.meg@gmail.com ; mfp_1206@hotmail.com ; mefarias@proimi.org.ar

3 Instituto de Microbiología, Facultad de Bioquímica, Química y Farmacia, Universidad Nacional de Tucumán. T4000 Tucumán, Argentina. E-mail: jdib@proimi.org.ar

doi: 10.15298/invertzool.16.3.01

ABSTRACT: The recently discovered “living” stromatolites in the Argentinean Puna are considered one of the most extreme stromatolites found so far. A rich biodiversity of bacteria and archaea were previously reported in such stromatolites. As nematodes are the most numerous multicellular animals on Earth, the aim of this work was to investigate their presence in the stromatolites from Socompa lake at 3570 meters above sea level (masl). Nematodes were extracted and identified as belonging to the Monhysteridae family, with 91–92% homology to Diplolaimella dievengatensis. The phylogenetic analysis suggested they are novel species and probably belong to a new genus. This study represents the first report related to the presence of novel nematodes in such peculiar stromatolites. Knowing their functions and genetic features involved in the adaptation to these harsh conditions could help to elucidate important aspects about the ecological impact of these organisms in hostile environments.

KEY WORDS: nematodes, stromatolites, extreme environment, Puna, Monhysteridae.

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