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Fungal Biology

Niloofar Vaghefi, Julie R Kikkert, Frank S Hay, Gavriela D Carver, Lori B Koenick, Melvin D Bolton, Linda E Hanson, Gary A Secor, Sarah J Pethybridge
The taxonomy and evolutionary species boundaries in a global collection of Cercospora isolates from Beta vulgaris was investigated based on sequences of six loci. Species boundaries were assessed using concatenated multi-locus phylogenies, Generalized Mixed Yule Coalescent (GMYC), Poisson Tree Processes (PTP), and Bayes factor delimitation (BFD) framework. Cercospora beticola was confirmed as the primary cause of Cercospora leaf spot (CLS) on B. vulgaris. Cercospora apii, C. cf. flagellaris, Cercospora sp...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Andrew L Loyd, Benjamin W Held, Eric R Linder, Jason A Smith, Robert A Blanchette
The laccate (shiny or varnished) Ganoderma contain fungi that are important wood decay fungi of living trees and decomposers of woody debris. They are also an important group of fungi for their degradative enzymes and bioprocessing potential. Laboratory decay microcosms (LDMs) were used to study the relative decay ability of G anoderma curtisii, Ganoderma meredithiae, Ganoderma sessile, and G anoderma zonatum, which are four commonly encountered Ganoderma species in the U.S., across four wood types (Pinus taeda, Quercus nigra, Q uercus virginiana, and Sabal palmetto)...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Romina Gazis, Laura Poplawski, William Klingeman, Sarah L Boggess, Robert N Trigiano, Andrew D Graves, Steven J Seybold, Denita Hadziabdic
Thousand Cankers Disease (TCD) affects Juglans and Pterocarya species. This disease poses not only a major threat to the nut and timber industries but also to native stands of walnut trees. Galleries created by Pityophthorus juglandis (vector) are colonized by the fungus Geosmithia morbida (causal agent of necrosis). It is unknown if other fungi colonizing these galleries might act antagonistically towards G. morbida. The objectives of this study were to: (1) characterize the fungal community associated with TCD-infected trees and (2) develop a pilot study addressing their potential antagonism towards G...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Hector Urbina, Martin F Breed, Weizhou Zhao, Kanaka Lakshmi Gurrala, Siv G E Andersson, Jon Ågren, Sandra Baldauf, Anna Rosling
Biotic and abiotic conditions in soil pose major constraints on growth and reproductive success of plants. Fungi are important agents in plant soil interactions but the belowground mycobiota associated with plants remains poorly understood. We grew one genotype each from Sweden and Italy of the widely-studied plant model Arabidopsis thaliana. Plants were grown under controlled conditions in organic topsoil local to the Swedish genotype, and harvested after ten weeks. Total DNA was extracted from three belowground compartments: endosphere (sonicated roots), rhizosphere and bulk soil, and fungal communities were characterized from each by amplification and sequencing of the fungal barcode region ITS2...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Dong-Hyeon Lee, Jolanda Roux, Brenda D Wingfield, Michael J Wingfield
The African fungal tree pathogen, Ceratocystis albifundus, undergoes uni-directional mating type switching, giving rise to either self-fertile or self-sterile progeny. Self-sterile isolates lack the MAT1-2-1 gene and have reduced fitness such as slower growth and reduced pathogenicity, relative to self-fertile isolates. While it has been hypothesized that there is a 1:1 ratio of self-fertile to self-sterile ascospore progeny in relatives of C. albifundus, some studies have reported a significant bias in this ratio...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Sean Doyle, Gary W Jones, Stephen K Dolan
Gliotoxin is an epipolythiodioxopiperazine (ETP) class toxin, contains a disulfide bridge that mediates its toxic effects via redox cycling and is produced by the opportunistic fungal pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus. The gliotoxin bis-thiomethyltransferase, GtmA, attenuates gliotoxin biosynthesis in A. fumigatus by conversion of dithiol gliotoxin to bis-thiomethylgliotoxin (BmGT). Here we show that disruption of dithiol gliotoxin bis-thiomethylation functionality in A. fumigatus results in significant remodelling of the A...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Alfred Mitema, Sheila Okoth, Mohamed S Rafudeen
Toxigenic Aspergillus species produce mycotoxins that are carcinogenic, hepatotoxic and teratogenic immunosuppressing agents in both human and animals. Kenya frequently experiences outbreaks of aflatoxicosis with the worst occurring in 2010, which resulted in 215 deaths. We examined the possible reasons for these frequent aflatoxicosis outbreaks in Kenya by studying Aspergillus flavus diversity, phenotypes and mycotoxin profiles across various agricultural regions. Using diagonal transect random sampling, maize kernels were collected from Makueni, Homa Bay, Nandi, and Kisumu counties...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Victor C Ujor, Emmanuel C Adukwu, Christopher C Okonkwo
Non-self contact between fungi elicits strong morphological and biochemical reactions in the mycelia of interacting species. Although these reactions appear to be species- and interaction-specific, some responses such as pigmentation, increased secretion of phenol-oxidases, barrage formation and sealing of the mycelia front are common responses in most interactions. Hence, some species recruit similar molecular machineries in response to non-self. Increasing number of fully sequenced and annotated fungal genomes and advances in genome-wide and global proteome analytical tools now allow researchers to use techniques such as RNA sequencing, micro and macroarray analysis, 2-dimensional protein gel profiling, and differential display of mRNA to probe the underlying molecular mechanisms of combative mycelial interactions...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Lauren Goldmann, Alex Weir
A first molecular-based phylogeny is presented for the Laboulbeniomycetes, a group of ascomycete fungi that utilize arthropods for nutrition and/or dispersal. Morphological diversification and life-history evolution has made it difficult to resolve relationships within the group, and to identify close relatives. Here, we infer a preliminary phylogeny based on acquisition of 51 new SSU rDNA sequences, representing a total of 65 taxa. The results of this study demonstrate that Laboulbeniomycetes is monophyletic, and related to Sordariomycetes...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Andreas Wuensch, Franziska Trusch, Nurul A Iberahim, Pieter van West
Oomycetes are eukaryotic pathogens infecting animals and plants. Amongst them Saprolegnia parasitica is a fish pathogenic oomycete causing devastating losses in the aquaculture industry. To secure fish supply, new drugs are in high demand and since fish experiments are time consuming, expensive and involve animal welfare issues the search for adequate model systems is essential. Galleria mellonella serves as a heterologous host model for bacterial and fungal infections. This study extends the use of G. mellonella for studying infections with oomycetes...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Kresten Jon Kromphardt Olsen, Amy Rossman, Birgitte Andersen
Morphology and phylogeny have been used to distinguish members of the plant pathogenic fungal genus Stemphylium. A third method for distinguishing species of fungi is by chemotaxonomy. The main goal of the present study was to investigate the chemical potential of Stemphylium via HPLC-UV-MS analysis, while also exploring the potential of chemotaxonomy as a robust identification method for Stemphylium. Several species were found to have species-specific metabolites, while other species were distinguishable by a broader metabolic profile rather than specific metabolites...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Jiraporn Jirakkakul, Sittiruk Roytrakul, Chettida Srisuksam, Pratchya Swangmaneecharern, Suthathip Kittisenachai, Janthima Jaresitthikunchai, Juntira Punya, Peerada Prommeenate, Jittisak Senachak, Laihong So, Anuwat Tachaleat, Morakot Tanticharoen, Supapon Cheevadhanarak, Songsak Wattanachaisaereekul, Alongkorn Amnuaykanjanasin
The quality of Beauveria bassiana conidia directly affects the virulence against insects. In this study, continuous subculturing of B. bassiana on both rice grains and potato dextrose agar (PDA) resulted in 55 and 49 % conidial yield reduction after 12 passages and 68 and 60 % virulence reduction after 20 and 12 passages at four d post-inoculation, respectively. The passage through Tenebrio molitor and Spodoptera exigua restored the virulence of rice and PDA subcultures, respectively. To explore the molecular mechanisms underlying the conidial quality and the decline of virulence after multiple subculturing, we investigated the conidial proteomic changes...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Renate Heinzelmann, Simone Prospero, Daniel Rigling
Very little is known about the biology and ecology of haploid Armillaria strains in nature. In this outdoor inoculation experiment, we assessed the virulence of six haploid Armillariaostoyae strains along with their diploid parent towards 2-year-old seedlings and 4-year-old saplings of Norway spruce (Picea abies), and determined their ability to colonise freshly cut stumps. As inoculum source an Armillaria-colonised hazelnut (Corylus avellana) stem segment was inserted into the soil substrate. Re-isolations from mycelial fans at the root collar of infected trees or stumps were made...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Tahereh Jafari, Aino-Liisa Alanne, Jouni Issakainen, Kati Pihlaja, Jari Sinkkonen
Herbarium specimens are a treasure trove for biochemical studies. However, this implies understanding of the chemical changes during the drying and storage of the specimen. We compared herbarium specimens at different ages and fresh samples of four mushroom species (Kuehneromyces mutabilis, Hypholoma capnoides, Kuehneromyces lignicola, Hypholoma fasciculare) of two genera in the family Strophariaceae by using proton nuclear magnetic resonance (1 H NMR) spectroscopy combined with principal component analysis (PCA)...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Donald M Gardiner, Kemal Kazan
Genome engineering using Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)-associated nucleases, such as Cas9 (CRISPR-associated protein 9), are revolutionising molecular biology. In this study, we established a Cas9-based genome editing system in Fusarium graminearum, a highly destructive fungal pathogen of cereal crops. Although the molecular toolkit of F. graminearum is well developed compared to other fungi, Cas9-mediated engineering offers a number of potential benefits, such as the ability to create marker free mutants in this species...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Ignacio E Maldonado-Mendoza, Maria J Harrison
Plants associated with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) increase their tolerance to arsenic-polluted soils. This study aims to investigate the genes involved in the AMF molecular response to arsenic pollution. Genes encoding proteins involved in arsenic metabolism were identified and their expression assessed by PCR or RT-qPCR. The As-inducible gene GiArsA (R. irregularis ABC ATPase component of the ArsAB arsenite efflux pump) and two new genes, an arsenate/arsenite permease component of ArsAB (RiArsB) and a methyltransferase type 11 (RiMT-11) were induced when arsenate was added to two-compartment in vitro monoxenic cultures of R...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Chatchai Kosawang, Daniel Buchvaldt Amby, Boonsom Bussaban, Lea Vig McKinney, Jing Xu, Erik D Kjær, David B Collinge, Lene Rostgaard Nielsen
Ash dieback, caused by the fungus Hymenoscyphus fraxineus, has threatened ash trees in Europe for more than two decades. However, little is known of how endophytic communities affect the pathogen, and no effective disease management tools are available. While European ash (Fraxinus excelsior) is severely affected by the disease, other more distantly related ash species do not seem to be affected. We hypothesise that fungal endophytic communities of tolerant ash species can protect the species against ash dieback, and that selected endophytes have potential as biocontrol agents...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
S M Velmala, I Vuorinen, A Uimari, T Piri, T Pennanen
We tested if root colonisation by ectomycorrhizal fungi (EMF) could alter the susceptibility of Norway spruce (Picea abies) seedlings to root rot infection or necrotic foliar pathogens. Firstly, spruce seedlings were inoculated by various EMF and challenged with Heterobasidion isolates in triaxenix tubes. The ascomycete EMF Meliniomyces bicolor, that had showed strong antagonistic properties towards root rot causing Heterobasidion in vitro, protected spruce seedlings effectively against root rot. Secondly, spruce seedlings, inoculated with M...
February 2018: Fungal Biology
Francesca Rotondo, Soon Gyu Hong, Tobin Peever, Barry M Pryor
This study examined the genetic diversity of small-spored Alternaria species in the southwest desert of the USA by sampling 552 isolates from different habitats (soil and plant debris) in different locations (urban and an undisturbed desert). To estimate the genetic diversity, Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP) fingerprinting analysis was performed for all isolates. Strains representative of the sampled genotypic diversity (n = 125) were further characterized according their sporulation pattern and the capability to produce allergens...
January 2018: Fungal Biology
Martina Turk, Cene Gostinčar
Intracellular glycerol accumulation is one of the main fungal adaptations to osmotic and also cold stress. We investigated the management of glycerol metabolism in polyextremotolerant black yeasts Aureobasidium pullulans and Aureobasidium subglaciale. We show that increased salinity (5 % and 10 %; w/v), but not cold (10 °C) trigger intracellular glycerol accumulation. The transcriptional response of the genes involved in glycerol synthesis, degradation and import, to increased salinity, low temperature or a combination of both was analysed with real-time PCR...
January 2018: Fungal Biology
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