Antonie van Leeuwenhoek

, Volume 109, Issue 6, pp 877–894 | Cite as

Wounds on Rapanea melanophloeos provide habitat for a large diversity of Ophiostomatales including four new species

  • Tendai Musvuugwa
  • Z. Wilhelm de Beer
  • Tuan A. Duong
  • Léanne L. Dreyer
  • Kenneth Oberlander
  • Francois Roets
Original Paper


Rapanea melanophloeos, an important canopy tree in Afromontane forests, is commonly utilised for medicinal bark harvesting. Wounds created from these activities provide entrance for many fungi, including arthropod-associated members of the Ophiostomatales and Microascales (ophiostomatoid fungi). In this study we assessed the diversity of wound-associated Ophiostomatales on storm-damaged R. melanophloeos trees in the Afromontane forests of South Africa. Five species were identified based on micro-morphological and molecular phylogenetic analyses. These included Ophiostoma stenoceras and four newly described taxa Sporothrix itsvo sp. nov., S. rapaneae sp. nov., S. uta sp. nov. and O. noisomeae sp. nov. Four of these are members of the S. schenckiiO. stenoceras complex (O. stenoceras, S. itsvo sp. nov., S. rapaneae sp. nov., S. uta sp. nov.) while O. noisomeae groups basal in the Ophiostomatales alongside the S. lignivora complex and Graphilbum. In addition to other taxa known from this host, the present study shows that there is a rich, yet still poorly explored, diversity of Ophiostomatales associated with R. melanophloeos in Afromontane forests. More taxa are likely to be discovered with increased research effort. These must be assessed in terms of pathogenicity towards this ecologically and economically important tree.


Afromonatane forests Ophiostoma Rapanea Sporothrix 



The authors thank the DST/NRF Centre of Excellence in Tree Health Biotechnology (CHTB) for financial support and the South African National Parks Board (SANPARKS) and Western Cape Nature Conservation Board for issuing the necessary collecting permits. We are also grateful to Netsai Machingambi, PC Benade and Dewidine van der Colff for assistance with field work and Jane Forrester for permission to work on trees in the Harold Porter National Botanical Garden.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tendai Musvuugwa
    • 1
  • Z. Wilhelm de Beer
    • 2
  • Tuan A. Duong
    • 3
  • Léanne L. Dreyer
    • 1
    • 4
  • Kenneth Oberlander
    • 5
    • 6
  • Francois Roets
    • 4
    • 6
  1. 1.Department of Botany and ZoologyStellenbosch UniversityStellenboschSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology and Plant Pathology, Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI)University of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  3. 3.Department of Genetics, Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI)University of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  4. 4.DST/NRF Centre of Excellence in Tree Health Biotechnology (CTHB), Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI), Department of Microbiology and Plant PathologyUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  5. 5.Institute of BotanyAcademy of SciencesPrůhoniceCzech Republic
  6. 6.Department of Conservation Ecology and EntomologyStellenbosch UniversityStellenboschSouth Africa

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