, Volume 20, Issue 3, pp 147–159 | Cite as

Diverging diversity patterns in the Tulasnella (Basidiomycota, Tulasnellales) mycobionts of Aneura pinguis (Marchantiophyta, Metzgeriales) from Europe and Ecuador

  • Markus PreußingEmail author
  • Martin Nebel
  • Franz Oberwinkler
  • Michael Weiß
Original Paper


Aneura pinguis (Aneuraceae) is a cosmopolitan thalloid liverwort that shows a specific mycorrhiza-like interaction with basidiomycetes. To date, tropical specimens have not been studied in great depth. Samples of A. pinguis were collected from 48 individuals in one plot in South Ecuador and 54 individuals in five European countries. Light and transmission electron microscopy and molecular analyses based on nuclear rDNA coding for the ribosomal large subunit (nucLSU) and from the 5.8s-ITS2 regions were carried out to identify the associated mycobionts and to study their phylogenetic relationships. Microscopic and ultrastructural investigations of the fungal colonisation showed a high congruence between the European and the Ecuadorian sites and confirmed previous results. Tulasnellales are the only mycobionts that could be detected from ultrastructural characters with certainty. Molecular phylogenetic analysis indicated the presence of tulasnelloid fungi from at least 13 distinct clades. The composition of the communities of tulasnelloid fungi in A. pinguis differs between Ecuador and Europe. The diversity of tulasnelloid fungal partners was much higher at the Ecuadorian site.


Aneura pinguis Aneuraceae Mycobiont Tulasnellales Neotropical mountain rainforest Southern Ecuador Europe Diversity 



We thank Ingrid Kottke, whose commitment was essential in the beginning of the project. Robert Bauer provided valuable information on ultrastructural features of tulasnelloid fungi. Renate Lübenau-Nestle gave us indispensable help when collecting Aneura samples in Bavaria; Lars Hedenäs, Eva Maier, and Michael Sauer also supported the investigations by sampling. We thank A. Kei Andrews for critically reading an earlier draft of the manuscript. This study was carried out within the research project FOR 402-2, financially supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG; German Research Association). We thank the Fundación Cientifíca San Francisco and the NCI for providing research facilities.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Markus Preußing
    • 1
    Email author
  • Martin Nebel
    • 1
  • Franz Oberwinkler
    • 2
  • Michael Weiß
    • 2
  1. 1.State Museum of Natural HistoryStuttgartGermany
  2. 2.Organismic BotanyTübingen UniversityTübingenGermany

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