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International Union of Microbiological Societies (IUMS, Mycology Division)
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Comparative genome sequence analysis underscores mycoparasitism as the ancestral life style of Trichoderma.

Kubicek, C.P., Herrera-Estrella, A., Seidl, V., Le Crom, S., Martinez, D.A., Druzhinina, I.S., Zeilinger, S.,Casas-Flores, S., Horwitz, B.A., Mukherjee, P.K., et al., 2011
Genome Biology, 12:R40
http://genomebiology.com/content/12/4/R40

Background


Mycoparasitism, a lifestyle where one fungus is parasitic on another fungus, has special relevance when the prey is a plant
pathogen, providing a strategy for biological control of pests for plant protection. Probably, the most studied biocontrol
agents are species of the genus Hypocrea/Trichoderma.



Results


Here we report an analysis of the genome sequences of the two biocontrol species Trichoderma atroviride (teleomorph Hypocrea atroviridis) and Trichoderma virens (formerly Gliocladium virens, teleomorph Hypocrea virens), and a comparison with Trichoderma reesei (teleomorph Hypocrea jecorina). These three Trichoderma species display a remarkable conservation of gene order (78 to 96%), and a lack of active mobile elements probably due to
repeat-induced point mutation. Several gene families are expanded in the two mycoparasitic species relative to T. reesei or other ascomycetes, and are overrepresented in non-syntenic genome regions. A phylogenetic analysis shows that T. reesei and T. virens are derived relative to T. atroviride. The mycoparasitism-specific genes thus arose in a common Trichoderma ancestor but were subsequently lost in T. reesei.



Conclusions


The data offer a better understanding of mycoparasitism, and thus enforce the development of improved biocontrol strains for
efficient and environmentally friendly protection of plants.

Copyright: Irina Druzhinina & Alexey Kopchinskiy 2004 - 2008