Articles | Volume 18, issue 4
Research article
01 Mar 2021
Research article |  | 01 Mar 2021

Novel hydrocarbon-utilizing soil mycobacteria synthesize unique mycocerosic acids at a Sicilian everlasting fire

Nadine T. Smit, Laura Villanueva, Darci Rush, Fausto Grassa, Caitlyn R. Witkowski, Mira Holzheimer, Adriaan J. Minnaard, Jaap S. Sinninghe Damsté, and Stefan Schouten


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Short summary
Soils from an everlasting fire (gas seep) in Sicily, Italy, reveal high relative abundances of novel uncultivated mycobacteria and unique 13C-depleted mycocerosic acids (multi-methyl branched fatty acids) close to the main gas seep. Our results imply that mycocerosic acids in combination with their depleted δ13C values offer a new biomarker tool to study the role of soil mycobacteria as hydrocarbon consumers in the modern and past global carbon cycle.
Final-revised paper