Australasian Plant Pathology

, Volume 43, Issue 5, pp 503–512 | Cite as

Endophyte isolations from Syzygium cordatum and a Eucalyptus clone (Myrtaceae) reveal new host and geographical reports for the Mycosphaerellaceae and Teratosphaeriaceae

  • Angelica Marsberg
  • Bernard Slippers
  • Michael J. Wingfield
  • Marieka GryzenhoutEmail author


Species of Mycosphaerellaceae and Teratosphaeriaceae (Ascomycetes) cause important leaf, shoot and canker diseases globally on a broad range of hosts, including Eucalyptus and other Myrtaceae. Recently, species of the Mycosphaerellaceae and Teratosphaeriaceae have been isolated as asymptomatic endophytes. In this study, endophytic species of Mycosphaerellaceae and Teratosphaeriaceae were isolated from samples taken from healthy native Syzygium cordatum (Myrtaceae) and related non-native Eucalyptus grandis x E. camaldulensis (hybrid clone) growing in Mtubatuba, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. Multi-locus sequence analysis (MLSA) using the Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) region, the partial Large Subunit (LSU; 28S nrDNA) of the nuclear ribosomal DNA operon and Translation Elongation Factor-1α (TEF-1α) genes were used to correctly identify the 22 resulting isolates. The isolates grouped in five clades representing Readeriella considenianae that was isolated only from the Eucalyptus hybrid clone, Mycosphaerella marksii and M. vietnamensis from S. cordatum and Pseudocercospora crystallina from both S. cordatum and the Eucalyptus hybrid clone. Interestingly, the serious canker pathogen T. zuluensis was isolated from Eucalyptus leaves, although it is known only from stem and branch cankers. Of the species found, R. considenianae and M. vietnamensis were found in South Africa for the first time, while M. marksii, M. vietnamensis and P. crystallina were shown to naturally infect native S. cordatum for the first time. Despite the limited number of trees sampled, the new host and distribution reports show that more intensive sampling, especially following an endophyte approach, will reveal more complete patterns of host preference and geographical distribution for these fungi.


Mycosphaerellaceae Teratosphaeriaceae Eucalyptus grandis Syzygium cordatum Native and non-native trees South Africa 



We thank the Thutuka Funding programme of the National Research Foundation (NRF), members of the Tree Protection Co-operative Programme (TPCP) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST)/NRF Centre of Excellence in Tree Health Biotechnology (CTHB), South Africa for financial support. We are also grateful to Dr Ewald Groenewald (CBS-KNAW Fungal Biodiversity Centre; Netherlands), for his valuable assistance with the data analysis and for helpful suggestions regarding the manuscript. We also thank Miss Kerry-Anne Pillay and Mr Jan Nagel for technical assistance.


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Copyright information

© Australasian Plant Pathology Society Inc. 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angelica Marsberg
    • 1
  • Bernard Slippers
    • 1
  • Michael J. Wingfield
    • 1
  • Marieka Gryzenhout
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Genetics, Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology InstituteUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of Plant SciencesUniversity of the Free StateBloemfonteinSouth Africa

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