Insights into the role of fungi in pine wilt disease

Cláudia S.L. Vicente, Miguel Soares, Jorge M.S. Faria, Ana P. Ramos, Maria L. Inácio

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Pine wilt disease (PWD) is a complex disease that severely affects the biodiversity and economy of Eurasian coniferous forests. Three factors are described as the main elements of the disease: the pinewood nematode (PWN) Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, the insect-vector Monochamus spp., and the host tree, mainly Pinus spp. Nonetheless, other microbial interactors have also been considered. The study of mycoflora in PWD dates back the late seventies. Culturomic studies have revealed diverse fungal communities associated with all PWD key players, composed frequently of saprophytic fungi (i.e., Aspergillus, Fusarium, Trichoderma) but also of necrotrophic pathogens associated with bark beetles, such as ophiostomatoid or blue-stain fungi. In particular, the ophiostom-atoid fungi often recovered from wilted pine trees or insect pupal chambers/tunnels, are considered crucial for nematode multiplication and distribution in the host tree. Naturally occurring mycoflora, reported as possible biocontrol agents of the nematode, are also discussed in this review. This review discloses the contrasting effects of fungal communities in PWD and highlights promising fungal species as sources of PWD biocontrol in the framework of sustainable pest management actions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number780
JournalJournal of Fungi
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021


  • Biocontrol
  • Blue-stain fungi
  • Interactions
  • Mycobiome
  • Pine wood nematode


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