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Open Access Molecular phylogenetic analyses reveal a close evolutionary relationship between Podosphaera (Erysiphales: Erysiphaceae) and its rosaceous hosts

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Podosphaera is a genus of the powdery mildew fungi belonging to the tribe Cystotheceae of the Erysiphaceae. Among the host plants of Podosphaera, 86 % of hosts of the section Podosphaera and 57 % hosts of the subsection Sphaerotheca belong to the Rosaceae. In order to reconstruct the phylogeny of Podosphaera and to determine evolutionary relationships between Podosphaera and its host plants, we used 152 ITS sequences and 69 28S rDNA sequences of Podosphaera for phylogenetic analyses. As a result, Podosphaera was divided into two large clades: clade 1, consisting of the section Podosphaera on Prunus (P. tridactyla s.l.) and subsection Magnicellulatae; and clade 2, composed of the remaining member of section Podosphaera and subsection Sphaerotheca. Because section Podosphaera takes a basal position in both clades, section Podosphaera may be ancestral in the genus Podosphaera, and the subsections Sphaerotheca and Magnicellulatae may have evolved from section Podosphaera independently. Podosphaera isolates from the respective subfamilies of Rosaceae each formed different groups in the trees, suggesting a close evolutionary relationship between Podosphaera spp. and their rosaceous hosts. However, tree topology comparison and molecular clock calibration did not support the possibility of co-speciation between Podosphaera and Rosaceae. Molecular phylogeny did not support species delimitation of P. aphanis, P. clandestina, P. ferruginea, P. spiraeae and P. tridactyla in their current circumscriptions, which suggests the need for revision of these species.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2010-06-18

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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 Westerdijk Fungal Biodiversity Institute.
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