Home • Gongronella butleri v1.0
Figure 1) Distinct subsporangial swelling termed (apophysis) of Gongronella butleri. 
Figure 2) Hemispherical columella. 
Images by Kerrie O'Donnell
Figure 1) Distinct subsporangial swelling termed (apophysis) of Gongronella butleri. Figure 2) Hemispherical columella. Images by Kerrie O'Donnell

Gongronella butleri (Lendner) Peyronel & Dal Vesco CBS 227.36 (+ mating type) was deposited in the CBS-KNAW culture collection by L.H. Leonian in 1936 together with CBS 228.36, the – mating type.  This heterothallic species was originally described as Absidia butleri, but was subsequently transferred to Gongronella (Peyronel & Dal Vesco 1955).  Gongronella was originally classified in the Mucoraceae (Hesseltine & Ellis 1964); however, because this family was discovered to be polyphyletic (O’Donnell et al. 2000), it was reclassified in a more broadly defined monophyletic Cunninghamellaceae (Walther et al. 2013).  Gongronella butleri reproduces asexually via globose multi-spored sporangia that are formed terminally on aerial sporangiophores.  Each sporangium is subtended by a distinct subsporangial swelling termed an apophysis (Fig. 1).  The sporangial wall dissolves at maturity, releasing sporangiospores, which reveals a hemispherical columella (Fig. 2).  Sexual reproduction in this self-sterile or heterothallic species results in the formation of ornamented zygospores formed between opposed suspensors (http://zygomycetes.org/index.php?id=90).  The whole-genome sequence of G. butleri should help elucidate evolution within the early diverging fungi, in support of the 1000 Fungal Genome Project.

References

Hesseltine CW, Ellis JJ. 1964. The genus Absidia: Gongronella and cylindrical-spored species of Absidia. Mycologia 56:568─601.

O’Donnell K, Lutzoni F, Ward TJ, Benny GL. 2000. Evolutionary relationships among mucoralean fungi (Zygomycota): Evidence for family polyphyly on a large scale. Mycologia 93:286─296.

Peyronel B, Dal Vesco G. 1955. Ricerche sulla microflora di un terreno agrario presso Torino. Allionia 2:357─417.

Walther G, Pawlowska J, Alastruey-Izuierdo A, Wrzosek M, Rodriguez-Tudela JL, Dolatabadi S, Chakrabarti A, de Hoog GS. 2013. DNA barcoding in Mucorales: an inventory of biodiversity. Persoonia 30:11─47.