Aureobasidium pullulans is the source of the commercially valuable polysaccharide pullulan and the enzyme xylanase. Isolates are typically off-white to pale pink or black on solid media, while some tropical isolates have been described as 'color variants' with bright pigments of red, yellow or purple. We sequenced 5 loci (internal transcribed spacer, intergenic spacer 1, translation elongation factor-1 alpha, beta tubulin, and RNA polymerase II) from 45 new isolates from Thailand. Based on the phylogenetic analyses, isolates were classified into 12 clades. Each clade showed different colors on different culture media including two clades with 'color variants' and some clades exhibited high levels of pullulan production or xylanase activity. Colony characteristics do not correlate perfectly with DNA sequence phylogeny or the physiological characters, but DNA sequence differences rapidly identify isolates with genetic novelty. © 2009 The British Mycological Society.
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