2013 Volume 28 Issue 4 Pages 491-494
Phylogenetic diversity of [FeFe]-hydrogenase (HydA) in termite guts was assessed by pyrosequencing PCR amplicons obtained using newly designed primers. Of 8,066 reads, 776 hydA phylotypes, defined with 97% nucleotide sequence identity, were recovered from the gut homogenates of three termite species, Hodotermopsis sjoestedti, Reticulitermes speratus, and Nasutitermes takasagoensis. The phylotype coverage was 92–98%, and the majority shared only low identity with database sequences. It was estimated that 194–745 hydA phylotypes existed in the gut of each termite species. Our results demonstrate that hydA gene diversity in the termite gut microbiota is much higher than previously estimated.