Physiology and Genetics

Volume 15 of the series The Mycota pp 1-15


Recent Developments in the Molecular Taxonomy of Fungi

  • Roland W.S. WeberAffiliated withObstbau Versuchs- und Beratungszentrum/Fruit Research and Advisory Centre (OVB) Jork Email author 

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Chapter 1: This chapter gives an up-to-date account of the taxonomy of fungi, referring to the recent AFTOL (‘assembling the fungal tree of life') scheme. For each group, changes proposed since the publication of Mycota VIIA and VIIB in 2001 are discussed. Considerations include groups which no longer belong to the Fungi in a taxonomic sense, but continue to be studied by mycologists. Although AFTOL has potential to become the first global taxonomic scheme for fungi, there are several factors which could destabilise it. Likely or possible problem cases are indicated. This as indeed any previous ‘natural’ (i.e. phylogeny-based) classification scheme of fungi has grouped together biologically dissimilar species whilst separating others which show striking similarities in their life styles or morphologies. The impact of such rearrangements for the teaching of mycology is discussed.