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Open Access Multiple gene genealogies and phenotypic characters differentiate several novel species of Mycosphaerella and related anamorphs on banana

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Three species of Mycosphaerella, namely M. eumusae, M. fijiensis, and M. musicola are involved in the Sigatoka disease complex of bananas. Besides these three primary pathogens, several additional species of Mycosphaerella or their anamorphs have been described from Musa. However, very little is known about these taxa, and for the majority of these species no culture or DNA is available for study. In the present study, we collected a global set of Mycosphaerella strains from banana, and compared them by means of morphology and a multi-gene nucleotide sequence data set. The phylogeny inferred from the ITS region and the combined data set containing partial gene sequences of the actin gene, the small subunit mitochondrial ribosomal DNA and the histone H3 gene revealed a rich diversity of Mycosphaerella species on Musa. Integration of morphological and molecular data sets confirmed more than 20 species of Mycosphaerella (incl. anamorphs) to occur on banana. This study reconfirmed the previously described presence of Cercospora apii, M. citri and M. thailandica, and also identified Mycosphaerella communis, M. lateralis and Passalora loranthi on this host. Moreover, eight new species identified from Musa are described, namely Dissoconium musae, Mycosphaerella mozambica, Pseudocercospora assamensis, P. indonesiana, P. longispora, Stenella musae, S. musicola, and S. queenslandica.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 6, 2008

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  • Persoonia aims to publish papers dealing with molecular phylogeny and evolution of fungi. A further aim is to promote fungal taxonomy by employing a polythetic approach to clarify the true phylogeny and relationships within the kingdom Fungi. The journal publishes high-quality papers elucidating known and novel fungal taxa at the DNA level, and also strives to present novel insights into evolutionary processes and relationships. Papers to be considered include research articles and reviews.

    Papers are published using a Fast Track system. This implies that the papers are immediately published online and freely available through the internet via this website. Volumes appear twice a year (June and December). From Volume 36 onwards (2016) hard copy volumes will only be made available through printing-on-demand. The issues can be ordered separately through the Publication Division of Naturalis Biodiversity Center; e-mail:

    Persoonia is a journal published jointly by the Naturalis Biodiversity Center and the Centraalbureau voor Schimmelcultures.
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