Submitted to: Mycologia
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 19, 2010
Publication Date: January 7, 2011
Citation: Mejia, L., Rossman, A.Y., Castlebury, L.A., White, J. 2011. New species, phylogeny, host-associations, and geographic distribution of the genus Cryptosporella (Gnomoniaceae, Diaporthales). Mycologia. 103:379-399.
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.
The phylogeny of Cryptosporella is revised to include recently discovered species. Eight species new to science are described and two new combinations are proposed, raising the total number of species accepted in Cryptosporella to 19. The species delimitation and phylogeny for all species of Cryptosporella is determined based on analyses of DNA sequences from three genes (ß-tubulin, ITS, and tef1-a), comparative morphology of sexual structures on their host substrate, and host associations. The inferred phylogeny suggests that Cryptosporella has speciated primarily on Betulaceae with 16 species occurring exclusively on that plant family. The host range of most species is narrow with nine species reported only from a single host species or subspecies and ten species occurring on a few, usually congeneric, host species. The data suggest speciation events resulting from host jumps to closely and distantly related host species within the same geographic area. The known distribution range of Cryptosporella is expanded to mountain cloud forests of the provinces of Chiriquí in Panama and Tucumán in Argentina.