Journal Articles: 2010-2001

Peterson, K.R., Pfister, D.H. & Bell, C.D., 2010. Cophylogeny and biogeography of the fungal parasite Cyttaria and its host Nothofagus, southern beech. Mycologia , 102 , pp. 1417-1425.Abstract

The obligate, biotrophic association among species of the fungal genus Cyttaria and their hosts in the plant genus Nothofagas often is cited as a classic example of cophylogeny and is one of the few cases in which the biogeography of a fungus is commonly mentioned or included in biogeographic analyses. In this study molecular and morphological data are used to examine hypotheses regarding the cophylogeny and biogeography of the 12 species of Cyttaria and their hosts, the 11 species of Nothofagas subgenera Lophozonia and Nothofagus. Our results indicate highly significant overall cophylogenetic structure, despite the fact that the associations between species of Cyttaria and Nothojagus usually do not correspond in a simple one to one relationship. Two major lineages of Cyttaria are confined to a single Nothofagus subgenus, a specificity that might. account for a minimum of two codivergences. We hypothesize other major codivergences. Numerous extinction also are assumed, as are an independent. parasite divergence followed by host switching to account for C. berteroi. Considering the historical association of Cyttaria and Nothofagus, our hypothesis may support the vicariance hypothesis for the trans-Antarctic distribution between Australasian and South American species of Cyttaria species hosted by subgenus Lophozonia. It also supports the hypothesis of transoceanic long distance dispersal to account for the relatively recent relationship between Australian and New Zealand Cyttaria species, which we estimate to have occurred 44.6-28.5 mya. Thus the history of these organisms is not only a reflection of the breakup of Gondwana but also of other events that have contributed to the distributions of many other southern hemisphere plants and fungi.

Lantieri, A. & Pfister, D.H., 2010. A new species of Marcelleina from Italy. Mycotaxon , 111 , pp. 465-469.Abstract

Marcelleina mediterranea is described as a new species and is illustrated. It occurs on sandy soil among scattered mosses, in Southeast Sicily (Italy). It differs from other species in size and ornamentation of ascospores. Its ecology and taxonomical relationships are examined.

Peterson, K.R. & Pfister, D.H., 2010. Phylogeny of Cyttaria inferred from nuclear and mitochondrial sequence and morphological data. Mycologia , 102 , pp. 1398-1416.Abstract

Cyttaria species (Leotiomycetes, Cyttariales) are obligate, biotrophic associates of Nothofagus (Hamamelididae, Nothofagaceae), the southern beech. As such Cyttaria species are restricted to the southern hemisphere, inhabiting southern South America (Argentina and Chile) and southeastern Australasia (southeastern Australia including Tasmania, and New Zealand). The relationship of Cyttaria to other Leotiomycetes and the relationships among species of Cyttaria were investigated with newly generated sequences of partial nucSSU, nucLSU and mitSSU rRNA, as well as TEE] sequence data and morphological data. Results found Cyttaria to be defined as a strongly supported clade. There is evidence for a close relationship between Cyttaria and these members of the Helotiales: Cordierites, certain Encoelia spp., Ionomidotis and to a lesser extent Chlorociboria. Order Cyttariales is supported by molecular data, as well as by the unique endostromatic apothecia, lack of chitin and highly specific habit of Cyttaria species. Twelve Cyttaria species are hypothesized, including all 11 currently accepted species plus an undescribed species that accommodates specimens known in New Zealand by the misapplied name C. gunnii, as revealed by molecular data. Thus the name C. gunnii sensu stricto is reserved for specimens occurring on N. cunninghamii in Australia, including Tasmania. Morphological data now support the continued recognition of C. septentrionalis as a species separate from C. gunnii. Three major clades are identified within Cyttaria: one in South America hosted by subgenus Nothofagus, another in South America hosted by subgenera Nothofagus and Lophozonia, and a third in South America and Australasia hosted by subgenus Lophozonia, thus producing a non-monophyletic grade of South American species and a monophyletic clade of Australasian species, including monophyletic Australian and New Zealand clades. Cyttaria species do not sort into clades according to their associations with subgenera Lophozonia and Nothofagus.

LoBuglio, K.F. & Pfister, D.H., 2010. Placement of Medeolaria farlowii in the Leotiomycetes, and comments on sampling within the class. Mycological Progress , 9 , pp. 361-368.Abstract

Medeolaria farlowii, an ascomycetous parasite of Medeola virginiana, has been included as the only member of the family Medeolariaceae and order Medeolariales. Its assignment within the Ascomycota has been problematic due to the lack of distinctive ascomatal form and ascus morphology. Asci are formed in a loosely organized hymenium on hypertrophic portions of Medeola virginiana stems. Phylogenetic analyses of nuclear 5.8S, large subunit, and small subunit rDNA gene sequences place M. farlowii in the Leotiomycetes with parsimony, Bayesian, and maximum likelihood analyses, but its position within this class remains unresolved. In general, limited taxon and gene sampling in the Leotiomycetes hampers placement of taxa within this class. A survey of available sequence data in the Leotiomycetes is given, and the implication for phylogenetic studies within the class is discussed. Medeolaria farlowii should be treated as a monotypic genus in the monotypic order Medeolariales, class Leotiomycetes.

Santelli, C.M., et al., 2010. Promotion of Mn(II) Oxidation and Remediation of Coal Mine Drainage in Passive Treatment Systems by Diverse Fungal and Bacterial Communities. Applied and Environmental Microbiology , 76 , pp. 4871-4875.Abstract

Biologically active, passive treatment systems are commonly employed for removing high concentrations of dissolved Mn(II) from coal mine drainage (CMD). Studies of microbial communities contributing to Mn attenuation through the oxidation of Mn(II) to sparingly soluble Mn(III/IV) oxide minerals, however, have been sparse to date. This study reveals a diverse community of Mn(II)-oxidizing fungi and bacteria existing in several CMD treatment systems.

Han, J.G., et al., 2010. Scutellinia jejuensis (Pezizales), a new species from Korea. Mycotaxon , 112 , pp. 47-53.Abstract

A new species of Scutellinia discovered in Jeju, Korea, Scutellinia jejuensis, is formally introduced. A combination of morphological characteristics and sequence analysis of the partial LSU rDNA demonstrates that the fungus represents a species distinct from all other subglobose to globose-spored Scutellinia species.

Schoch, C.L., et al., 2009. The Ascomycota Tree of Life: A Phylum-wide Phylogeny Clarifies the Origin and Evolution of Fundamental Reproductive and Ecological Traits. Systematic Biology , 58 , pp. 224-239.Abstract

We present a 6-gene, 420-species maximum-likelihood phylogeny of Ascomycota, the largest phylum of Fungi. This analysis is the most taxonomically complete to date with species sampled from all 15 currently circumscribed classes. A number of superclass-level nodes that have previously evaded resolution and were unnamed in classifications of the Fungi are resolved for the first time. Based on the 6-gene phylogeny we conducted a phylogenetic informativeness analysis of all 6 genes and a series of ancestral character state reconstructions that focused on morphology of sporocarps, ascus dehiscence, and evolution of nutritional modes and ecologies. A gene-by-gene assessment of phylogenetic informativeness yielded higher levels of informativeness for protein genes (RPB1, RPB2, and TEF1) as compared with the ribosomal genes, which have been the standard bearer in fungal systematics. Our reconstruction of sporocarp characters is consistent with 2 origins for multicellular sexual reproductive structures in Ascomycota, once in the common ancestor of Pezizomycotina and once in the common ancestor of Neolectomycetes. This first report of dual origins of ascomycete sporocarps highlights the complicated nature of assessing homology of morphological traits across Fungi. Furthermore, ancestral reconstruction supports an open sporocarp with an exposed hymenium (apothecium) as the primitive morphology for Pezizomycotina with multiple derivations of the partially (perithecia) or completely enclosed (cleistothecia) sporocarps. Ascus dehiscence is most informative at the class level within Pezizomycotina with most superclass nodes reconstructed equivocally. Character-state reconstructions support a terrestrial, saprobic ecology as ancestral. In contrast to previous studies, these analyses support multiple origins of lichenization events with the loss of lichenization as less frequent and limited to terminal, closely related species.

Lucking, R., et al., 2009. Fungi evolved right on track. Mycologia , 101 , pp. 810-822.Abstract

Dating of fungal divergences with molecular clocks thus far has yielded highly inconsistent results. The origin of fungi was estimated at between 660 million and up to 2.15 billion y ago, and the divergence of the two major lineages of higher Fungi, Ascomycota and Basidiomycota, at between 390 million y and LIP to 1.5 billion y ago. Assuming that these inconsistencies stein from various causes, we reassessed the systematic placement of the most important fungal fossil, Paleopyrenomycites, and recalibrated internally unconstrained, published molecular clock trees by applying uniform calibration points. As a result the origin of fungi was re-estimated at between 760 million and 1.06 billion y ago and the origin of the Ascomycota at 500-650 million y ago. These dates are much more consistent than previous estimates, even if based on the same phylogenies and molecular clock trees, and they are also much better in line with the fossil record of fungi and plants and the ecological interdependence between filamentous fungi and land plants. Our results do not provide evidence to suggest the existence of ancient protolichens as an alternative to explain the ecology of early terrestrial fungi in the absence of land plants.

Santelli, C.M., et al., 2009. Mn(II)-oxidizing fungi in metal contaminated environments. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta , 73 , pp. A1156-A1156. PDF
Smith, M.E. & Pfister, D.H., 2009. Tuberculate Ectomycorrhizae of Angiosperms: The Interaction between Boletus Rubropunctus (Boletaceae) and Quercus Species (Fagaceae) in the United States and Mexico. American Journal of Botany , 96 , pp. 1665-1675.Abstract

Tuberculate ectomycorrhizae (TECM) are unique structures in which aggregates of ectomycorrhizal roots are encased in a covering of fungal hyphae. The function of TECM is unknown, but they probably enhance the nitrogen nutrition and disease resistance of host plants. Trees in the Pinaceae form TECM with species of Rhizopogon and Suillus (Suillineae, Boletales). Similar tubercules are found with diverse angiosperms, but their mycobionts have not been phylogenetically characterized. We collected TECM in Mexico and the USA that were similar to TECM in previous reports. We describe these TECM and identify both the plant and fungal symbionts. Plant DNA confirms that TECM hosts are Quercus species. ITS sequences from tubercules and sclerotia (hyphal aggregations that serve as survival structures) matched sporocarps of Boletus rubropunctus. Phylogenetic analyses confirm that this fungus belongs to the suborder Boletineae (Boletales). This is the first published report of TECM formation in the Boletineae and of sclerotia formation by a Boletus species. Our data suggest that the TECM morphology is all adaptive feature that has evolved separately in two suborders of Boletales (Suillineae and Boletineae) and that TECM formation is controlled by the mycobiont because TECM are found on distantly related angiosperm and gymnosperm host plants.

Pfister, D.H., 2008. Early illustrations of Xylaria species. North American Fungi , 3 , pp. 161-166.Abstract

Four 17th and early 18th Century examples of illustrations of Xylaria species are presented. One of the earliest illustrations of a Xylaria species is that in Mentzel’s Pugillus rariorum plantarumpublished in 1682 and which Fries referred to Sphaeria polymorpha. An 1711 illustration by Marchant is noteworthy in the detail of the observations; perithecia and ascospores are noted and illustrated. Marchant considered this fungus to be related to marine corals. The plate was subsequently redone and incorporated by Micheli in his 1729 publication, Nova plantarum genera; this Micheli plate was listed by Fries under a different species, Sphaeria digitata. Although Fries mentions several illustrations ofSphaeria hypoxylon not all the sources he cited contain illustrations. The earliest illustration associated with this species that was located is Micheli’s in 1729. These illustrations are included along with discussion of the authors and books in which the illustrations appear.

Pfister, D.H., Matocec, N. & Kusan, I., 2008. Integrated studies in the classification of the Pezizaceae, re-evaluation of the genus Pachyella with a new segregate genus Adelphella. Mycologia Montengrina , 11 , pp. 7-17. PDF
Perry, B.A. & Pfister, D.H., 2008. Chaetothiersia vernalis, a new genus and species of Pyronemataceae (Ascomycota, Pezizales) from California. Fungal Diversity , 28 , pp. 65-72.Abstract

Chaetothiersia vernalis, collected from the northern High Sierra Nevada of California, is described as a new genus and species. This fungus is characterized by stiff, superficial, brown excipular hairs, smooth, eguttulate ascospores, and a thin ectal excipulum composed of globose to angular-globose cells. Phylogenetic analyses of nLSU rDNA sequence data support the recognition of Chaetothiersia as a distinct genus, and suggest a close relationship to the genus Paratrichophaea.

Pfister, D.H., Slater, C. & Hansen, K., 2008. Chorioactidaceae: a new family in the Pezizales (Ascomycota) with four genera. Mycological Research , 112 , pp. 513-527.Abstract

Molecular phylogenetic and comparative morphological studies provide evidence for the recognition of a new family, Chorioactidaceae, in the Pezizales. Four genera are placed in the family: Chorioactis, Desmazierella, Neournula, and Wolfina. Based on parsimony, likelihood, and Bayesian analyses of LSU, SSU, and RPB2 sequence data, Chorioactidaceae represents a sister clade to the Sarcosomataceae, to which some of these taxa were previously referred. Morphologically these genera are similar in pigmentation, excipular construction, and asci, which mostly have terminal opercula and rounded, sometimes forked, bases without croziers. Ascospores have cyanophilic walls or cyanophilic surface ornamentation in the form of ridges or warts. So far as is known the ascospores and the cells of the paraphyses of all species are multinucleate. The six species recognized in these four genera all have limited geographical distributions in the northern hemisphere. (c) 2007 The British Mycological Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

LoBuglio, K.F. & Pfister, D.H., 2008. A Glomerella species phylogenetically related to Colletotrichum acutatum on Norway maple in Massachusetts. Mycologia , 100 , pp. 710-715.Abstract

A fungus isolated from Norway maple (Acer platanoides) in the Boston, Massachusetts, area was determined to be it species of Glomerella, the teleomorph of Colletotrichum, acutatum. Pure. cultures of the fungus were obtained from discharged ascospores from perithecia in leaf tissue. This fungus was determined to be homothallic based oil the observation of perithecial development in cultures of single-spore isolates grown oil minimal salts media and with Sterile toothpicks. A morphological and molecular analysis was conducted to determine the taxonomic position of this fungus. Parsimony analyses of a combined nucleotide dataset of the ITS and LSU rDNA re-ion, and of the D1-D2 LSU rDNA re-ion, indicated diat. this species has phylogenetic affinifies with Colletotrichum acutatum, C. acutatum f. Sp. pineum, C. lupini, C. phormii and G. miyabeana. These results are significant because C. acutatum has not been reported oil Acer platanoides. Ill addition the consistent presence of perithecia on leaf tissue and in culture is unusual for Colletotrichum in. suggesting that the teleomorphic state is' important ill file life cycle of this fungus.

Bidartondo, M.I., et al., 2008. Preserving accuracy in GenBank. Science , 319 , pp. 1616-1616. PDF
Pfister, D.H. & Eyjolfsdottir, G.G., 2007. New records of cup-fungi from Iceland with comments an some previously reported species. Nordic Journal of Botany , 25 , pp. 104-112.Abstract

Twelve species of cup-fungi in the orders Pezizales and Helotiales are reported for the first time from Iceland and comments are made on eight species previously reported. Distributions and habitats are noted. Newly reported records of species occurrences are as follows: Ascocoryne cylichnium, Gloeotinia granigena, Melastiza flavorubens, Octospora melina, O. leucoloma, Ombrophila violacea, Peziza apiculata sensu lato, P. phyllogena, P. succosa, Pseudombrophila theioleuca, Ramsbottomia macracantha and Tarzetta cupularis. Recent work allows the re-identification of Peziza granulosa as P. fimeti.

Perry, B.A., Hansen, K. & Pfister, D.H., 2007. A phylogenetic overview of the family Pyronemataceae (Ascomycota, Pezizales). Mycological Research , 111 , pp. 549-571.Abstract

Partial sequences of nuLSU rDNA were obtained to investigate the phylogenetic relationships of Pyronemataceae, the largest and least studied family of Pezizales. The dataset includes sequences for 162 species from 51 genera of Pyronemataceae, and 39 species from an additional 13 families of Pezizales. Parsimony, ML, and Bayesian analyses suggest that Pyronemataceae is not monophyletic as it is currently circumscribed. Ascodesmidaceae is nested within Pyronemataceue, and several pyronernataceous taxa are resolved outside the family. Glaziellaceae forms the sister group to Pyronemataceae in ML analyses, but this relationship, as well as those of Pyronemataceae to the other members of the lineage, are not resolved with support. Fourteen clades of pyronernataceous taxa are well supported and/or present in all recovered trees. Several pyronemataceous genera are suggested to be non-monophyletic, including Anthracobia, Cheilymenia, Geopyxis, Humaria, Lasiobolidium, Neottiella, Octospora, Pulvinula, Stephensia, Tricharina, and Trichophaea. Cleistothecial and truffle or truffle-like ascomata forms appear to have evolved independently multiple times within Pyronemataceae. Results of these analyses do not support previous classifications of Pyronemataceae, and suggest that morphological characters traditionally used to segregate the family into subfamilial groups are not phylogenetically informative above the genus level. (c) 2007 The British Mycological Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Iturriaga, T. & Pfister, D.H., 2006. A monograph of the genus Cookeina (Ascomycota, Pezizales, Sarcoscyphoceae). Mycotaxon , 95 , pp. 137-180.Abstract

Eight species of the wood inhabiting pantropical genus Cookeina are described and illustrated. The genus Cookeina is characterized by large, stipitate or sessile brightly colored apothecial ascoma, with or without hairs, and by distinctive, thick-walled asci that have eccentricly placed opercula. An overview of the morphology, development and life histories of the species are given along with discussion of their relationships. A new species, C. colensoiopsis, is described from Venezuela, C. speciosa is recognized as a species complex, and a lectotype is designated for C. sinensis.

Yang, S. & Pfister, D.H., 2006. Monotropa uniflora plants of eastern Massachusetts form mycorrhizae with a diversity of russulacean fungi. Mycologia , 98 , pp. 535-540.Abstract

Plant species in the subfamily Monotropoideae are mycoheterotrophs; they obtain fixed carbon from photosynthetic plants via a shared mycorrhizal network. Previous findings show mycoheterotrophic plants exhibit a high level of specificity to their mycorrhizal fungi. In this study we explore the association of mycorrhizal fungi and Monotropa uniflora (Mono tropoideae: Ericaceae) in eastern North America. We collected M. uniflora roots and nearby basidiomycete sporocarps from four sites within a 100 km(2) area in eastern Massachusetts. We analyzed DNA sequences of the internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) from the fungal nuclear ribosomal gene to assess the genetic diversity of fungi associating with M. uniflora roots. In this analysis we included 20 ITS sequences from Russula sporocarps collected nearby, 44 sequences of Russula or Lactarius species from GenBank and 12 GenBank sequences of fungi isolated from M. uniflora roots in previous studies. We found that all 56 sampled M. uniflora mycorrhizal fungi were members of the Russulaceae, confirming previous research. The analysis showed that most of the diversity of mycorrhizal fungi spreads across the genus Russula. ITS sequences of the mycorrhizal fungi consisted of 20 different phylotypes: 18 of the genus Russula and two of Lactafius, based on GenBank searches. Of the sampled plants, 57% associated with only three of the 20 mycorrhizal fungi detected in roots, and of the 25 sporocarp phylotypes collected three, were associated with M. uniflara. Furthermore the results indicate that the number of different fungal phylotypes associating with M. uniflora of eastern North America is higher than that of western North America but patterns of fungal species abundance might be similar between mycorrhizae from the two locations.