Submitted to: Studies in Mycology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 21, 2010
Publication Date: March 22, 2011
Citation: Mejia, L., Rossman, A.Y., Castlebury, L.A., White, J. 2011. A systematic account of the genus Plagiostoma (Gnomoniaceae, Diaporthales) based on morphology, host-associations, and a four gene phylogeny. Studies in Mycology. 68:211-235. Interpretive Summary: Fungi are a group of organisms that cause billions of dollars damage each year to agricultural and forest resources in the United States. One group of fungi includes the species that caused chestnut blight in the eastern United States killing all of the chestnut trees. Many additional fungi belong to the same group and cause diseases of forest trees. This research describes and illustrates all fungal species in a genus related to the chestnut blight fungus. Many of these species occur on hardwood trees in North America, although most of them do not cause serious diseases. This research provides descriptions and illustrations of these fungi along with a key for identification. In addition, relationships between these species have been determined based on DNA sequences. This paper will be used by forest pathologists to determine the species of fungi that occur on hardwood trees.
Technical Abstract: The genus Plagiostoma inhabits leaves and branches of a range of woody and herbaceous plant families in the temperate northern hemisphere. Based on analyses of morphological, cultural, and molecular data, Plagiostoma is reviewed and monographed. The morphological data include shape and size of perithecia, asci, and ascospores and overall arrangement of the ascomata in the host. Cultural studies include the comparison of growth rate and pigmentation of the species in culture media. The molecular data comprise an analysis of DNA sequences from four genes (ß-tubulin, ITS, rpb2, and tef1-a). In this paper the genus Plagiostoma is recircumscribed based on the type species, P. euphorbiae, and related species. Eight new species are described, four species are redescribed, and four new combinations are proposed. A key to the 25 accepted species of Plagiostoma is provided.