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A whole genome atlas of 81 Psilocybe genomes as a resource for psilocybin production.

Kevin McKernan; Liam T Kane; Yvonne Helbert; Lei Zhang; Nathan Houde; Stephen McLaughlin

The Psilocybe genus is well known for the synthesis of valuable psychoactive compounds such as Psilocybin, Psilocin, Baeocystin and Aeruginascin. The ubiquity of Psilocybin synthesis in Psilocybe has been attributed to a horizontal gene transfer mechanism of a ~20Kb gene cassette. A recently published highly contiguous reference genome derived from long read single molecule sequencing has underscored interesting variation in this Psilocybin synthesis gene cassette. This reference genome has also enabled the shotgun sequencing of spores from many Psilocybe strains to better catalog the genomic diversity in the Psilocybin synthesis pathway. Here we present the de novo assembly of genomes of 81 Psilocybe genomes compared to the P.Envy reference genome. Surprisingly, the genomes of Psilocybe galindoiPsilocybe tampanensis and Psilocybe azurescens lack sequence coverage over the previously described Psilocybin synthesis pathway but do demonstrate amino acid sequence homology to an alternative pathway and may illuminate previously proposed convergent evolution of Psilocybin synthesis.

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