Joint Genome Institute Community Sequencing Program 2011

Exploring the Genome Diversity of Mycorrhizal Fungi to Understand the Evolution and Functioning of Symbiosis in Woody Shrubs and Trees


Welcome to HebelomaDB, the Hebeloma cylindrosporum genome database

Within the framework of the JGI Mycorrhizal Genomics Initiative, we are sequencing a phylogenetically and ecologically diverse suite of mycorrhizal fungi (Basidiomycota and Ascomycotina), which include the major clades of symbiotic species associating with trees and woody shrubs. Analyses of these genomes will provide insight into the diversity of mechanisms for the mycorrhizal symbiosis, including endo- and ectomycorrhiza.

The Basidiomycete Agaric Hebeloma cylindrosporum has only been reported to occur in Europe, from Finland or Norway in the north to Spain in the south. It is frequently found in forest stands developing on sand dunes with very little organic matter along the atlantic or mediterranean coast. In this respect, H. cylindrosporum can be qualified as a pioneer species which thrives in newly established forests or in disturbed areas. H. cylindrosporum is frequently associated with different pine trees such as Pinus pinaster. It can also form mycorrhizas with additional hosts which do not occur in its natural habitats.

The most remarkable feature of H. cylindrosporum as an ectomycorrhizal fungal species is that its entire life cycle, including fruit body formation, can be obtained under axenic conditions in the laboratory using defined culture media. It can be routinely transformed using Agrobacterium tumefaciens and insertional mutant libraries are available making it possible reverse genetic approach to identify fungal functions essential for symbiosis establishment. Undoubtedly, the genome sequence will be a great help in further developing this approach.

Contacts: Francis Martin or Gilles Gay.