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An Endophytic Taxol-Producing Fungus from Taxus media, Cladosporium cladosporioides MD2

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Fermentation processes using taxol-producing fungi other than Taxus spp. may be an alternative way to produce taxol, which is an important antitumor agent used widely in the clinic setting. In this study, a taxol-producing endophytic fungus strain MD2 was isolated from the inner bark of Taxus media. Strain MD2 produced taxol when grown in potato dextrose liquid medium. The fungal taxol—which was analyzed by ultraviolet, high-performance liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry—was shown to be identical to authentic taxol and 10-deacetylbaccatin III. Further analysis with nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to show the chemical structure of the fungal taxol indicated that the fungal taxol produced an NMR spectrum identical to that of authentic taxol. Strain MD2 was identified as Cladosporium cladosporioides according to morphology of the fungal culture, characteristics of the spores, and analysis of 18S rDNA sequence. In addition, 10-deacetylbaccatin III-10-O-acetyl transferase gene of C. cladosporioides MD2 was cloned for the first time and was shown to share 99% identity with that of T. x media and 97% identity with that of T. wallichiana var. mairei.

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This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant 20776058) and the New Century Talents Support Program by the Ministry of Education of China in 2006. We thank Gu Xiao-man and Cheng Hong for mass spectral analysis, Liang Ping for NMR analysis, and Gao Xian-Hui for acquiring the electron micrograph of C. cladosporioides MD2 spores. All three are members of the Analytic and Testing Center at Huazhong University of Science and Technology.

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Correspondence to Long-Jiang Yu.

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Zhang, P., Zhou, PP. & Yu, LJ. An Endophytic Taxol-Producing Fungus from Taxus media, Cladosporium cladosporioides MD2. Curr Microbiol 59, 227–232 (2009).

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