Mass spectrometry: A rosetta stone to learn how fungi interact and talk

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Calla-Quispe E.
Fuentes-Rivera H.L.
Ramírez P.
Martel, Carlos
Ibañez A.J.
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Fungi are a highly diverse group of heterotrophic organisms that play an important role in diverse ecological interactions, many of which are chemically mediated. Fungi have a very versatile metabolism, which allows them to synthesize a large number of still little-known chemical compounds, such as soluble compounds that are secreted into the medium and volatile compounds that are chemical mediators over short and long distances. Mass spectrometry (MS) is currently playing a dominant role in mycological studies, mainly due to its inherent sensitivity and rapid identification capabilities of different metabolites. Furthermore, MS has also been used as a reliable and accurate tool for fungi identification (i.e., biotyping). Here, we introduce the readers about fungal specialized metabolites, their role in ecological interactions and provide an overview on the MS-based techniques used in fungal studies. We particularly present the importance of sampling techniques, strategies to reduce false-positive identification and new MS-based analytical strategies that can be used in mycological studies, further expanding the use of MS in broader applications. Therefore, we foresee a bright future for mass spectrometry-based research in the field of mycology. © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
Palabras clave
Volatile organic compounds, Biotyping, Ecological interactions, Fungal metabolites, Metabolomics, Non-volatile compounds