Bristle-like fungal colonizers on the stone walls of the Kitora and Takamatsuzuka Tumuli are identified as Kendrickiellaphycomyces
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Using an integrated analysis of phenotypic and genotypic characterizations, a total of 18 isolates of “bristle-like” fungal colonizers of the Kitora and Takamatsuzuka Tumuli, which had been provisionally identified as Phialocephala phycomyces, were here determined to be Kendrickiella phycomyces (Auersw.) K. Jacobs & M. J. Wingf. The 18 isolates consisted of 10 from stone surfaces or viscous gels (biofilms) of the stone chamber interior and adjacent small room, and air in the adjacent small room of the Kitora Tumulus, and 8 from viscous gels on the stone surfaces of the stone chamber interior, plant roots, and soil in the adjacent space or stone wall interspaces (interstices) in the stone chamber of the Takamatsuzuka Tumulus. Plaster and stone walls in both tumuli were recorded as novel substrates of this fungus. Our 18S sequence-based phylogeny indicated that K. phycomyces and species of the leotiomycetous anamorph genera Chaetomella, Pilidium, Sphaerographium, and Synchaetomella formed a monophyletic lineage distant from the core taxa of the Leotiomycetes (Pezizomycotina, Ascomycota). The relationship between the physicochemical characteristics of these isolates on GYC agar plates, i.e., soluble brownish pigments and dissolution of calcium carbonate (CaCO3), and the biodeterioration of the plaster and plaster walls of both tumuli, are briefly discussed.