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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

U.S. National Fungus Collections - Selected Achievements
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1909 Detected first-known American case of industry-threatening bubbles disease of mushrooms
1910 Discovered first-known Importation of dangerous potato wart disease in America
1925 Revealed major newly recognized group of plant pathogens as represented by citrus-scab fungus
1926 Characterized all known pathogens and diseases of Hevea rubber trees in South America
1927 Established fundamental significance of Neurospora to development of modern research in fungal genetics
1931 Developed comprehensive taxonomic key to all known genera of fungi in English
1941 Completed research on entomogenous fungi with checklist of fungal pathogens in insects in America
1950 Monographed Balansia, a genus of fungi causing sterility in grasses
1954 Organized definitive system for use in specialized hyphal morphology for classifying wood-decay fungi
1955 Monographed Stereum, an important genus of wood-decay and tree-disease fungi
1975 Documented all known fungi of Puerto Rico in the most comprehensive technical inventory available for a specific, large tropical area
1976 Monographed Myxomycetes of American Tropics
1983 Monographed the phragmosporous species of Nectria and related genera in the Hypocreales
1985 Monographed the species of Tubeufiaceae, many of which are parasitic on leaf fungi
1987 Published checklist of species described in Cercospora leaf spot fungi
1988 Completed a world list of Phomopsis names with notes on nomenclature, morphology, and biology, including over 1,000 species with their hosts and type specimens
1989 Published a comprehensive account of the Fungi on Plants and Plant Products in the United States, including 13,000 accepted fungal species on 8,000 vascular plants hosts
1991 Described the fungus causing dogwood anthracnose as the previously unknown species, Discula destructiva; this description served as the basis for research on this important disease
1991 Published world monograph of Monilinia, fungi causing brown rot of stone fruits and other diseases
1993 Produced an index to the 200,000 species of fungi included in Index to Saccardo's Sylloge Fungorum and made this index available in print and electronic form
1994 Established public access to data files of over 650,000 herbarium specimens as well as databases of fungi on vascular plants both inside and outside the United States
1995 Published book on the scientific and common names of 7,000 vascular plants in the United States, a companion volume to fungi on plants and plant products
1995 Developed checklist and account of fungi reported on Rhododendron throughout the world
1996 A melon-killer fungus on cantaloupes, honeydew, and watermelons in Texas was described as a pycnidial genus and species new to science. This research allows the identification of this fungus and development of a control strategy for the disease.
1997 Information about plant-associated fungi was placed on-line through the World Wide Web. The databases include records of plant-associated fungi both inside and outside the United States, references on the systematics of plant-associated fungi, data on 700,000 specimens in the U.S. National Fungus Collections, and access to the source of published fungal names.
1998 Database developed of the host range and geographic distribution of plant-associated fungi for high-priority risk assessments. These data are essential to plant regulatory officials in making risk assessments concerning the allowable importation of nursery stock, logs, and other plant material.
1998 How-to manual for inventorying fungal biodiversity published. This document presents a standard set of techniques for sampling and isolating fungi from all kinds of substrates and habitats in a large, terrestrial area.
1999 A monographic account of the 56 genera included in the Hypocreales was published including a synopsis of the 149 excluded genera. Descriptions, illustrations and keys for identification to species were provided for most genera in the Hypocreales including their asexual states.
1999 Phomopsis amygdali causing peach shoot blight was characterized using morphological and molecular characteristics. These results are important for disease control, breeding for resistance, and implementing plant quarantine regulations.
1999 The fungus causing the plant-quarantine significant disease Karnal bunt of wheat, Tilletia indica, was distinguished from the new species described as Tilletia walkeri on ryegrass, thus saving the U.S. wheat export market valued at $6 billion annually.
1999 An on-line identification system for species of Tilletia in the United States was developed. This system is based on characteristics of their teliospores, specifically size, color, and ornamentation and the host on which the fungus occurs.
2000 Phomopsis vaccinii, which causes a twig dieback as well as a fruit rot, was distinguished from other non-disease causing species of Phomopsis that are commonly isolated from Vaccinium spp. A new species of Phomopsis, P. columnaris, on lingonberry was described.
2001 The database of plant-associated fungi reported both inside and outside the United States passed 500,000 records. Data from fungi associated with plants in South Africa were integrated into the SBML database.
2001 A new species of Trichoderma, T. stromaticum, was described that controls witches broom of cacao, the most devastating disease of the chocolate plant in South America. The Hypocrea sexual state of T. stromaticum was also discovered.
2002 An interactive key for the identification of the most common species of Trichoderma and Hypocrea was developed and placed on-line. This system includes descriptions and illustrations.
2002 The order Diaporthales or chestnut blight family is a large group of fungi consisting of approximately 100 genera of plant pathogenic fungi. A molecular study of this order showed that there are at least six major family-level lineages in the order.
2002 Green mold is a serious disease of cultivated mushrooms in the United States and Europe caused by a Trichoderma that was confused with one used in biological control. The cultivated mushroom pathogen was determined to be a new species of Trichoderma, T. aggresivum, that is distinct from the species of Trichoderma used in biological control.

Last Modified: 10/24/2005