Hypocreales » Polycephalomycetaceae » Pleurocordyceps

Pleurocordyceps ophiocordycipiticola

Pleurocordyceps ophiocordycipiticola D.P. Wei & K.D. Hyde

Index Fungorum number: 900189; Facesoffungi number: FoF 13972

Etymology – The specific epithet refers to the genus name of the host, Ophiocordyceps.

Parasitic on Ophiocordyceps sp. Sexual morph: Undetermined. Asexual morph: Synnemata 1.3–1.5 (x̄ = 1.4, n = 5) mm in high, arising from stroma of Ophiocordyceps sp., comprised of a globose base measuring 490–680 (x̄ =595, n = 5) μm in diam., and a white, cylindrical part measuring 70–150 (x̄ = 112, n = 5) μm in wide. Conidiophores dimorphic. a-Phialides 7.5–17 × 1–2 (x̄ = 12 × 1.5, n = 30) μm, forming from base of synnemata, compact, awl-shaped, hyaline, smooth-walled, monophialidic, producing a-conidia. β-Phialides 9.5–16 (x̄ = 13, n = 30) μm in long, hirsutella-like, forming from upper part of synnemata, base cylindrical (1.6–3.1 (x̄ = 2.5, n = 30) μm in wide)), narrow into a neck (0.7–1.5 (x̄ = 1, n = 30) μm in wide)), monophialidic, producing β-conidia. a-conidia 1.8–2.5 (x̄ = 2, n = 40) μm in diam., hyaline, globose, aseptate, aggregated at base of synnemata, forming yellow, subglobose conidial mass. β-conidia 2.5–4.8 × 1–1.8 (x̄ = 3.6 × 1.5, n = 40) μm, hyaline, fusiform, aseptate, aggregated in short chain.

Culture characteristics – Colonies on PDA reaching 4 cm after 30 days at 25 °C, white, circular, flat, mycelia dense, margin entire, reverse yellow, producing yellow conidia mass.

Material examined – Thailand, Chiang Mai Province, Mushroom researcher centre, on stroma of Ophiocordyceps cylindrospora, 13 August 2020, De-Ping Wei, MRC0801 (MFLU 22-0265, holotype), ex-type MFLUCC 22-0187.

Notes – A clade of maximum support consisting of Pleurocordyceps ophiocordycipiticola, P. marginaliradian and P. aurantiacus was observed in our multigene phylogenetic tree (Fig. 1). Both the reference species mentioned above were originally assigned to Polycephalomyces by Xiao et al. (2018) and later were transferred to Pleurocordyceps by Wang et al. (2021) based on phylogenetic analysis. The asexual and sexual morphs of P. marginaliradian simultaneously occured on Cossidae larvae (Lepidoptera) in Thailand. Pleurocordyceps ophiocordycipiticola can be distinguished from P. marginaliradian in forming white velvety synnemata with its base being enclosed by thick yellow conidial mass, while the latter species has yellow, cottony synnemata without conidial mass in the basal part (Xiao et al. 2018). Pleurocordyceps aurantiacus is distinct from P. ophiocordycipiticola by its flat-shaped, orange synnemata, oval to globose a-conidia (Xiao et al. 2018), whereas the new species has erect, cylindrical, white synnemata and globose a-conidia. We determined our collection as a new species on the basis of morphological differences and phylogenetic analysis.



Pleurocordyceps ophiocordycipiticola (MFLU 22-0265). a Infected Ophiocordyceps sp. b Synnemata growing on fertile part of the host. c Synnemata enclosed by conidial mass. d a-phialides. e β-phialides. f a-conidia. g β-conidia. Scale bars: a = 5000µm, b = 1000 µm, c = 500 µm, d, e = 20 µm, f, g = 5 µm. (d, e stained with Congo red solution)



Wei DP, Gentekaki E, Wanasinghe DN, Tang SM, Hyde KD. Diversity, molecular dating and ancestral characters state reconstruction of entomopathogenic fungi. Mycosphere. 13(2): 281351.


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Supported by 

Thailand Science Research and Innovation (TSRI)

project entitled:

"The future of specialist fungi in a changing climate: baseline data for generalist and specialist fungi associated with ants Rhododendron species and Dracaena species"

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