DNA barcoding and phylogenetic analyses of the genus Coleosporium (Pucciniales) reveal that the North American goldenrod rust C. solidaginis is a neomycete on introduced and native Solidago species in Europe

Abstract

Recently, an unknown rust fungus of the genus Coleosporium appeared in Germany and Switzerland on giant goldenrod, Solidago gigantea, an invasive neophyte from North America, and on the indigenous European goldenrod, S. virgaurea. For identification, DNA barcodes were assembled in the course of the German Barcode of Life (GBOL) project and the investigation of neomycetes in Switzerland. Phylogenetic analyses were performed using ITS and LSU sequences of Coleosporium species representing various host plants and geographic regions. These analyses resulted in the first molecular evidence of the North American rust Coleosporium solidaginis in Europe. Coleosporium solidaginis is split into two subclades that are closely related to Coleosporium asterum, a species on Aster s.l., which was formerly synonymized with C. solidaginis. The genus is divided into an American and a Eurasian clade. This phylogenetic pattern indicates that the geographic distribution, rather than the relationship with host plants, played a major role in the evolution of Coleosporium species. This finding particularly applies to the European species, which are genetically uniform according to the ITS and LSU sequences. Taxonomical consequences are discussed. Coleosporium solidaginis is fragmentarily distributed in Europe. The place of its introduction and host shift to S. virgaurea remains uncertain. Life cycle and propagation are mainly restricted to asexual urediniospores. Telia were found only once and the aecial stage was not observed at all on pine trees. The ecological impact of this neomycete is still unknown, but C. solidaginis has the potential to harm wild and cultivated goldenrods in Europe.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Neomycetes were originally defined as introduced alien fungi that had established in a new area after 1492 (Kreisel and Scholler 1994). Other authors (e.g., Beenken and Senn-Irlet 2016; Klenke and Scholler 2015) have used the term in a broader sense, including also non-established ephemeral fungi.

  2. 2.

    The S. canadensis record from SW Germany by Klenke and Scholler (2015) was revised by one of the authors of the present study (M.S.) and was determined as S. gigantea.

  3. 3.

    The record includes a photo of the infected plant and a photo of urediniospores viewed through a microscope. Therefore, we consider this a valid record and the first one from Europe, even though it was not published in a scientific journal.

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Acknowledgements

The authors thank Beatrice Senn-Irlet and Valentin Queloz (WSL Birmensdorf) for their substantial support during the Swiss part of the study. Thomas Brodtbeck (Riehen near Basel) kindly shared locations of rust fungi in Switzerland. Jasmin Joshi (University of Potsdam) gave valuable information about neophytes in general and in particular about invasive goldenrods. Maxi Tomowski (University of Potsdam) kindly informed us about her observations of C. solidaginis in Constance. The authors thank Patrick Dornes, who collected and provided the first specimen from Central Europe. Many thanks go to the Genetic Diversity Centre (GDC) of the ETH Zurich, where the sequences of Swiss specimens were generated and all molecular data were analyzed. Melissa Dawes provided linguistic suggestions on the manuscript. The Swiss Federal Office for the Environment financed the first author’s (L.B.) involvement in this study (FOEN project 05.0040.PZ/O282-2391). DNA barcodes were determined within the framework of the German Barcode of Life (GBOL) project, which is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF FKZ 01LI1501l to M.S.) as research for sustainable development (FONA, http://www.fona.de).

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Beenken, L., Lutz, M. & Scholler, M. DNA barcoding and phylogenetic analyses of the genus Coleosporium (Pucciniales) reveal that the North American goldenrod rust C. solidaginis is a neomycete on introduced and native Solidago species in Europe. Mycol Progress 16, 1073–1085 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11557-017-1357-2

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Keywords

  • Coleosporium asterum
  • GBOL
  • Host shift
  • Solidago canadensis
  • Solidago gigantea
  • Solidago virgaurea