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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2021

Worldwide Genetic Structure Elucidates the Eurasian Origin and Invasion Pathways of Dothistroma septosporum, Causal Agent of Dothistroma Needle Blight

Mullett, Martin S.; Drenkhan, Rein; Adamson, Kalev; Boron, Piotr; Lenart-Boron, Anna; Barnes, Irene; Tomsovsky, Michal; Janosikova, Zuzana; Adamcikova, Katarina; Ondruskova, Emilia; Queloz, Valentin; Piskur, Barbara; Musolin, Dmitry L.; Davydenko, Kateryna; Georgieva, Margarita; Schmitz, Sophie; Kacergius, Audrius; Ghelardini, Luisa; Orlovic, Jelena Kranjec; Muller, Michael;
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Dothistroma septosporum, the primary causal agent of Dothistroma needle blight, is one of the most significant foliar pathogens of pine worldwide. Its wide host and environmental ranges have led to its global success as a pathogen and severe economic damage to pine forests in many regions. This comprehensive global population study elucidated the historical migration pathways of the pathogen to reveal the Eurasian origin of the fungus. When over 3800 isolates were examined, three major population clusters were revealed: North America, Western Europe, and Eastern Europe, with distinct subclusters in the highly diverse Eastern European cluster. Modeling of historical scenarios using approximate Bayesian computation revealed the North American cluster was derived from an ancestral population in Eurasia. The Northeastern European subcluster was shown to be ancestral to all other European clusters and subclusters. The Turkish subcluster diverged first, followed by the Central European subcluster, then the Western European cluster, which has subsequently spread to much of the Southern Hemisphere. All clusters and subclusters contained both mating-types of the fungus, indicating the potential for sexual reproduction, although asexual reproduction remained the primary mode of reproduction. The study strongly suggests the native range of D. septosporum to be in Eastern Europe (i.e., the Baltic and Western Russia) and Western Asia.


Mycosphaerella pini; biogeography; ABC; DNB; global spread; introduction pathways; invasive pathogen; global spread

Published in

Journal of Fungi

2021, volume: 7, number: 2, article number: 111
Publisher: MDPI

Authors' information

Mullett, Martin S.
Mendel University in Brno
Drenkhan, Rein
Estonian University of Life Sciences
Adamson, Kalev
Estonian University of Life Sciences
Boron, Piotr
Agricultural University Krakow
Lenart-Boron, Anna
Agricultural University Krakow
Barnes, Irene
University of Pretoria
Tomsovsky, Michal
Mendel University in Brno
Janosikova, Zuzana
Slovak Academy of Sciences
Adamcikova, Katarina
Slovak Academy of Sciences
Ondruskova, Emilia
Slovak Academy of Sciences
Queloz, Valentin
Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research
Piskur, Barbara
Slovenian Forestry Institute
Musolin, Dmitry L.
St Petersburg State Forest Tech Univ
Ukrainian Research Institute of Forestry & Forest Melioration
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Mycology and Plant Pathology
Georgieva, Margarita
University of Forestry - Bulgaria
Schmitz, Sophie
Walloon Agr Res Ctr
Kacergius, Audrius
Lithuanian Research Centre for Agriculture and Forestry
Ghelardini, Luisa
University of Florence
Ghelardini, Luisa
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR)
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UKÄ Subject classification

Forest Science

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