Basidiomycete Fungi (basidiomycete + fungus)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Fungivore host-use groups from cluster analysis: patterns of utilisation of fungal fruiting bodies by ciid beetles

Glenda M. Orledge
Abstract., 1.,Ciid beetles typically live and breed in the fruiting bodies of lignicolous basidiomycete fungi. This study was undertaken to address the lack of an objective examination of patterns of host use by ciids. 2.,Cluster analysis of ciid host-use datasets from Britain, Germany, North America, and Japan, and subsequent cross-dataset comparisons, demonstrated the existence of ciid host-use patterns of wide geographical occurrence. These patterns were formalised as ciid host-use groups. 3.,Six Holarctic ciid host-use groups, and two host-use subgroups, were identified, and are described. Each host-use group comprises an assemblage of fungal genera and the breeding ciids that it supports. Each taxon belongs to only a single host-use group, but may be associated with several members of that group. There is a strong tendency for closely related taxa to belong to the same host-use group. 4.,It is suggested that ciid host-use groups are defined ultimately by host chemistry, with the ciids that belong to a particular group recognising, and responding positively to, emitted volatiles characterising the fungi belonging to that group. 5.,The idea of the host-use group bears comparison with the concepts of niche and guild, but is not equivalent to either. 6.,Ciid host-use groups have a valuable role to play in underpinning future studies of ciid ecology, also the systematics of both ciids and their fungal hosts. [source]

Interspecific carbon exchange and cost of interactions between basidiomycete mycelia in soil and wood

J. M. Wells
Summary 1.,The outcome of interactions between wood decay basidiomycete fungi is affected by the size of territory held by a mycelium. We investigated the outcomes of interactions between the cord-forming saprotrophs Phanerochaete velutina (DC: Pers.) Parm., Phallus impudicus (L.) Pers. and Hypholoma fasciculare (Huds: Fr) Kumner over 152,155 days, determined as ability to capture or share territory in soil and wood, in terms of decay partitioning and the carbon cost of interactions. 2.,The outcome of interactions in wood alone differed from those in which the fungi competed for an opponents' inoculum in soil microcosms. Competitive ability (the ability to capture or co-occupy an opponent's inoculum) varied according to species and inoculum age. In wood block pairings in the absence of soil there was evidence that P. velutina opportunistically utilized C previously mobilized within an opponent's inoculum. 3.,In soil systems, short-term (28-day) respiratory losses of preloaded 14C (supplied as glucose) indicated that interaction could have a substantial C cost, depending on the resource quality of the opponents' inocula. Phallus impudicus inocula accumulated 14C from opponents' mycelia during ,deadlock' interactions, although reciprocal interspecific 14C transfer was not observed. 4.,Saprotrophic cord-forming basidiomycetes are considered to be highly conservative of acquired nutrients, representing a significant nutrient reservoir in woodland ecosytems. Here we demonstrate that a potential major pathway for nutrient mineralization by this group is nutrient loss during competitive interactions in soil. [source]

The flora of the South Sandwich Islands, with particular reference to the influence of geothermal heating

P. Convey
Abstract Aim, To carry out as comprehensive a survey as practicable of the flora (higher plants, mosses, liverworts, lichens, basidiomycete fungi and diatoms) of the isolated, volcanically active, South Sandwich Islands archipelago in the southern South Atlantic. To relate the components of this flora to (1) the influence of local geothermal heating and (2) wider regional floras. Location, South Sandwich Islands, southern South Atlantic Ocean, maritime Antarctic (56,60 S, 26,28 W). Methods, Ice-free accessible sites on all 11 of the major islands in the archipelago were visited by helicopter in January 1997. During each visit, voucher specimens of each floral group were collected. The comprehensiveness of collections obtained at each site varied with the duration of each visit (a function of tight logistic constraints) and extent of site. Visit duration varied from 1 to 9 h at most sites, with longer periods spent on Bellingshausen Island (2 days) and Leskov Island (1 day). Candlemas Island was examined in greater detail over a 4-week period in February 1997. At all sites, particular attention was given to areas influenced by geothermal heating. Results, Data obtained in 1997 are combined with updated records from the only previous survey (in 1964) to provide a baseline description of the flora of the archipelago, which currently includes 1 phanerogam, 38 mosses, 11 liverworts, 5 basidiomycete fungi, 41 lichenised fungi and 16 diatoms with, additionally, several taxa identified only to genus. Major elements of the moss and liverwort floras are composed of South American taxa (32% and 73%, respectively), with a further 45% of mosses having bipolar or cosmopolitan distributions. These two groups show low levels of Antarctic endemicity (11% and 18%, respectively). In contrast, 52% of lichens and 80% of basidiomycete fungi are endemic to the Antarctic. A further 36% of lichens are bipolar/cosmopolitan, with only 5% of South American origin. Main Conclusions, The flora of the South Sandwich Islands is clearly derived from those of other Antarctic zones. The flora of unheated ground is closely related to that of the maritime Antarctic, although with a very limited number of species represented. That of heated ground contains both maritime and sub-Antarctic elements, confirming the importance of geothermal heating for successful colonisation of the latter group. The occurrence of several maritime Antarctic species only on heated ground confirms the extreme severity of the archipelago's climate in comparison with well-studied sites much further south in this biogeographical zone. [source]

Ustilago maydis, model system for analysis of the molecular basis of fungal pathogenicity

Christoph W. Basse
SUMMARY Ustilago maydis, a facultative biotrophic basidiomycete fungus, causes smut disease in maize. A hallmark of this disease is the induction of large plant tumours that are filled with masses of black-pigmented teliospores. During the last 15 years U. maydis has become an important model system to unravel molecular mechanisms of fungal phytopathogenicity. This review highlights recent insights into molecular mechanisms of complex signalling pathways that are involved in the transition from budding to filamentous growth and operate during the pathogenic growth phase. In addition, we describe recent progress in understanding the structural basis of morphogenesis and polar growth in different stages of U. maydis development. Finally, we present an overview of recently identified genes related to pathogenic development and summarize novel molecular and genomic approaches that are powerful tools to explore the genetic base of pathogenicity. Taxonomy: Ustilago maydis (DC) Corda (synonymous with Ustilago zeae Ung.)-Kingdom Eukaryota, Phylum Fungi, Order Basidiomycota, Family Ustilaginomycetes, Genus Ustilago. Host range: Infects aerial parts of corn plants (Zea mays) and its progenitor teosinte (Zea mays ssp. parviglumis). Maize smut is distributed throughout the world. Disease symptoms: U. maydis causes chlorotic lesions in infected areas, the formation of anthocyanin pigments, necrosis, hyperplasia and hypertrophy of infected organs. Infection by U. maydis can inhibit development and lead to stunting of infected plants. A few days after infection plant tumours develop in which massive fungal proliferation and the formation of the black-pigmented, diploid teliospores occurs. Under natural conditions tumours predominantly develop on sexual organs (tassels and ears), stems and nodal shoots. Tumours may vary in size from minute pustules to several centimetres in diameter and contain up to 200 billion spores. Useful web site: [source]