Ceratocystiopsis quercina sp. nov. Associated with Platypus cylindrus on Declining Quercus suber in Portugal

Maria L. Inácio, José Marcelino, Arlindo Lima, Edmundo Sousa, Filomena Nóbrega

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Platypus cylindrus is the most common ambrosia beetle in stands of Quercus suber in Portugal. This insect farms specialized fungi in sapwood galleries, using its mycangia to carry and store these organisms. Some ectosymbiotic fungi carried by P. cylindrus are phytopathogenic and cause extensive tree mortality and severe economic losses. To understand the role of P. cylindrus fungal symbionts in stands of Q. suber we examined beetle galleries present in declining and/or dying cork oak trees during field surveys. Logs with active galleries were obtained in situ and from captured emerging beetles. Insects were aseptically dissected, and their mycangia and intestine were retrieved. Morphological and molecular profiles of fungal isolates obtained from cultured insect parts were carried out to accurately characterize and identify isolated fungi. Molecular characterizations were performed with DNA sequence data from four loci, i.e., LSU, SSU, 5.8S‐ITS2‐ 28S, and TUB. Morphological results consistently showed a collection of Ophiostoma‐like fungal axenic isolates, while phylogenies inferred that this collection constitutes an undescribed taxon reported herein for the first time in association with P. cylindrus in Portuguese cork oak stands. The novel species was erected as Ceratocystiopsis quercina sp. nov. and constitutes a new phytopathogenic fungal species associated with symptoms of vegetative cork oak decline.

Original languageEnglish
Article number750
JournalBiology
Volume11
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2022

Keywords

  • ambrosia fungi
  • ambrosia insect
  • cork oak
  • Ophiostoma
  • Portugal
  • Quercus suber

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