Differentiation of species in Botryosphaeria
The genus is defined solely on the basis of morphology and it is these features that differentiate it from all other genera of fungi. Although the genus is clearly defined on morphological grounds, there is insufficient diversity in teleomorph features to allow unequivocable differentiation of many of the species. On the other hand, the anamorphs show considerable morphological diversity. For this reason, the taxonomy of the genus, and species differentiation is based on morphology of the asexually reproducing state. The mode whereby asexual spores are generated and released from their parent cells has several variants. The conidia themselves differ in shape, size, colour and texture. These features add up to a number of combinations that allow us to distinguish several morphological species. Something like twenty or more species are recognised at present. Molecular techniques, especially sequence analysis of variable regions of rDNA, have been used to clarify the taxonomy of the genus and have become powerful tools for differentiating species. They are also becoming major characters for defining and differentiating closely related species.
Version 02.1 saved 15 September 2004