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Antonie van Leeuwenhoek

New species of Ophiostomatales from Scolytinae and Platypodinae beetles in the Cape Floristic Region, including the discovery of the sexual state of Raffaelea.


PMID 26275876

Abstract

Olea capensis and Rapanea melanophloeos are important canopy trees in South African Afromontane forests. Dying or recently dead individuals of these trees are often infested by Scolytinae and Platypodinae (Curculionidae) beetles. Fungi were isolated from the surfaces of beetles emerging from wood samples and their galleries. Based on micro-morphological and phylogenetic analyses, four fungal species in the Ophiostomatales were isolated. These were Sporothrix pallida and three taxa here newly described as Sporothrix aemulophila sp. nov., Raffaelea vaginata sp. nov. and Raffaelea rapaneae sp. nov. This study represents the first collection of S. pallida, a species known from many environmental samples from across the world, from Scolytinae beetles. S. aemulophila sp. nov. is an associate of the ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus aemulus. R. rapaneae sp. nov. and R. vaginata sp. nov. were associated with a Lanurgus sp. and Platypodinae beetle, respectively, and represent the first Raffaelea spp. reported from the Cape Floristic Region. Of significance is that R. vaginata produced a sexual state analogous with those of Ophiostoma seticolle and O. deltoideosporum that also grouped in our analyses in Raffaelea s. str., to date considered an asexual genus. The morphology of the ossiform ascospores and anamorphs of the three species corresponded and the generic circumscription of Raffaelea is thus emended to accommodate sexual states. The two known species are provided with new combinations, namely Raffaelea seticollis (R.W. Davidson) Z.W. de Beer and T.A. Duong comb. nov. and Raffaelea deltoideospora (Olchow. and J. Reid) Z.W. de Beer and T.A. Duong comb. nov.