Comprehensive chemotaxonomic and genomic profiling of a biosynthetically talented Australian fungus, Aspergillus burnettii sp. nov.

Cameron L. M. Gilchrist, Heather J. Lacey, Daniel Vuong, John I. Pitt, Lene Lange, Ernest Lacey, Bo Pilgaard, Yit-Heng Chooi*, Andrew M. Piggott

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Aspergillus burnettii is a new species belonging to the A. alliaceus clade in Aspergillus subgenus Circumdati section Flavi isolated from peanut-growing properties in southern Queensland, Australia. A. burnettii is a fast-growing, floccose fungus with distinctive brown conidia and is a talented producer of biomass-degrading enzymes and secondary metabolites. Chemical profiling of A. burnettii revealed the metabolites ochratoxin A, kotanins, isokotanins, asperlicin E, anominine and paspalinine, which are common to subgenus Circumdati, together with burnettiene A, burnettramic acids, burnettides, and high levels of 14α-hydroxypaspalinine and hirsutide. The genome of A. burnettii was sequenced and an annotated draft genome is presented. A. burnettii is rich in secondary metabolite biosynthetic gene clusters, containing 51 polyketide synthases, 28 non-ribosomal peptide synthetases and 19 genes related to terpene biosynthesis. Functional annotation of digestive enzymes of A. burnettii and A. alliaceus revealed overlapping carbon utilisation profiles, consistent with a close phylogenetic relationship.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103435
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalFungal Genetics and Biology
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


  • Aspergillus
  • Biosynthetic gene cluster analysis
  • Carbohydrate active enzymes
  • Chemotaxonomy
  • Molecular phylogeny
  • Secondary metabolites

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