Special Interest Groups


SIGS1 ICTF DNA taxonomy debate session

“Should DNA sequences be allowed as the sole identifying criterion for naming species?”

17 July, Room 203 2Floor

Moderators: K Sifert, A Miller

DNA as type refers to the naming of taxa based solely on DNA sequences with no corresponding voucher specimen. Although this is not accepted in the current ICN, mycologists have found creative ways to circumvent this and several new species have been described based on a published illustration of the DNA sequence. This opens the door for literally millions of new fungal taxa being described based on short stretches of environmental sequences. The intention of the ICTF is to provide a venue of discussion for a wider range of fungal taxonomists who have not participated up to this point. This debate-style session will explore the advantages and disadvantages of adopting an article for DNA sequence as type in the Code. The first 10 minutes will be dedicated to introducing the topic, clarifying the question(s) being debated, and establishing the ground rules for the debate and discussion. Each member of each 3-person panel for and against the issue will have 3 minutes to discuss their opinions. The remaining 60 minutes will be for open discussion from the audience with a limit of 3 minutes per person.

SIGS2 Anaerobic Fungi: Genomics and Biotechnological Potential (Program)

17 July, Room204 2Floor

Moderator: J Stajich

SIGS3 Special interest group meeting on Colletotrichum (Program)

17 July, Room 202A 2Floor

Moderators: U Damm, L Cai

Colletotrichum is a large genus that can be found worldwide and is known to cause numerous plant diseases. The systematics of this genus changed drastically within the last decade, new species, especially cryptic species within the large species complexes, are constantly discovered and more and more species are being genome sequenced. Our understanding of the biology, pathogenicity, host range and geographical distribution of the individual species is increasing. As a result, many previous studies have to be rethought or repeated. Practical plant pathology and quarantine are on a turning point as they have to face these changes and adapt identification methods and control strategies or the quarantine status of individual pathogens. This meeting is intended to bring together key workers from the academic and applied sectors to share knowledge, review progress and set priorities for further studies.

SIGS4 Taxonomy of the Leotiomycetes

18 July, Room 202B+C 2Floor

Moderator: P Johnston

The Leotiomycetes constitute a large group of Ascomycota that has not been fully studied. The group is diversed in ecology and morphology. Molecular studies have been limited. We invite interested parties to join this informal discussion to address

1) sampling within this group

2) progress on barcoding specimens

3) determination of important and critical genera for inclusion in studies

4) use of epitypes and reliance on type studies to stabilize the classification

5) genome-scale phylogenies

The intent is to introduce workers with brief comments on projects undertaken. To solve the taxonomy and to stabilize higher level classification the advisability of establishing a formal working group or ICTF Subcommision will be discussed.

SIGS5 Golden Mycological Triangle – Ascomycota (Program & Abstracts)

18 July, Room 204 2Floor

Moderator: PW Crous

The EU-funded project “Golden Mycological Triangle – joining forces to exploit mycological biodiversity for novel anti-infectives and other beneficial metabolites” has been running since January of 2015. The project partners BIOTEC (Thailand), Helmholtz-Centre for Infection Research (HZI, Germany) and Westerdijk Fungal Biodiversity Institute (formerly CBS; The Netherlands) had set up a working plan that targeted both, biodiversity research and bioprospecting. Numerous young researchers from the European partners (some of whom, however, were PhD students or postdocs from Africa and Latin America or other Asian and European countries) are able to spend substantial time in Thailand. In return, several Thai researchers have been able to work in the European host institutes. While the first year of the project was dominated by field work, collection, isolation and taxonomic characterization of the new fungal strains, the second phase involved preliminary studies on their secondary metabolites. Meanwhile, numerous new biologically active molecules have been identified and some taxonomic phylogenetic studies were finished that increased our knowledge about the global fungal biodiversity. In many instances, it was possible to discover new taxa that produce unprecedented metabolites.

The highlights of the project will be presented, mainly by the young researchers who have been involved as delegates in the academic exchange. Some of them will also present posters in the general IMC11 program and some of the intended contributions have even been selected for plenary talks in the symposium. We would be happy if our SIG could meet a lot of interest from the IMC participants and herewith cordially invite everybody who is interested in our research to attend.

Jennifer Luangsa-ard, Pedro Crous and Marc Stadler


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (RISE) under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 645701, Project acronym “GoMyTri”.

SIGS6 Meeting: International subcommission on Colletotrichum taxonomy

18 July, Room 203 2Floor

Moderator: U Damm

SIGS7 International Flammulina community

20 July, Room 203 2Floor

Moderator: AF Van Peer

Flammulina velutipes is a popular edible mushroom (largely in South East Asia) with supposed health benefits and medicinal value. It is also emerging as one of the model species for studies on edible mushrooms. The genome has been sequenced and published, it is massively cultivated, it is genetically accessible, and it is studied in many countries on various topics. However, communication between industry and researchers on Flammulina is very limited. To improve communication, an International Flammulina Community was held at Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University in November 2015. The idea is to continue to promote our community (~60 members by now) through a website (under construction), and through satellite meetings. Normally, researchers do not have much budget to attend international meetings focused on a single species, and it is difficult to gather them. The IMC meeting would be an excellent venue for such a satellite (special interest group) meeting on Flammulina species. It will allow anyone who attends IMC to get to know our community, to be updated on the latest developments on F. velutipes research (and production), and to share ideas about improving the community platform.

SIGS8 Golden Mycological Triangle – 
discovery of novel bioactive secondary metabolites

(Program & Abstracts)

20 July, Room 204 2Floor

Moderator: M Stadler

SIGS9 on Phyllachorales (Program) (Abstracts)

20 July, Room202A 2Floor

Moderator: JC Dianese

The Phyllachorales consist of a major group of tropical and subtropical plant pathogens until recently with a precarious situation in terms of its taxonomy and phylogenetic relations. Recent publications indicate a new trend that will lead to an overall clearer picture that, however, need to be further exposed and discussed due to ambiguities that remain to be solved. Thus, just for the genus Phyllachora over 1500 records are shown by Index Fungorum, with an absolutely small number connected to some molecular knowledge. Thus a Symposium dealing with Phyllachorales and related orders, constitutes a very attractive theme that will for sure motivate a large group of mycologists involved with biotrophic plant parasitic fungi, especially important all over the Tropical areas of the world.