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Rhizopogon truncatus
Rhizopogon truncatus photographed by Dan Luoma, near Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada. This picture is its most northern known collection.

In the “1KFG: Deep Sequencing of Ecologically-relevant Dikarya” project (CSP1974), we aim to sequence additional sampling of genomic diversity within keystone lineages of plant-interacting fungi and saprophytic fungi that are of special ecological importance for understanding terrestrial ecosystems. In addition, comparative genome analysis with saprotrophic, mycorrhizal and pathogenic fungi will provide new insights into the specific and conserved adaptations associated with each fungal lifestyle. This genome is part of a collaborative effort aimed at using genomics data to understand the evolutionary history, ecology, and genomic mechanisms of mutualistic ectomycorrhizal symbionts and their Pinaceae hosts.

Rhizopogon truncatus

Rhizopogon truncatus Linder is an ectomycorrhizal truffle-forming fungus in the family Boletaceae. This distinctively bright colored species associates with Pinaceae hosts where it exchanges mineral nutrients for photosynthates. It is native to North America and found in montane conifer forests in both eastern and western North America (Trappe et al. 2007). A similarly bright yellow species, Rhizopogon cokeri, is now considered a synonym of R. truncatus.  The host specificity of R. truncatus may be different from other Rhizopogon species, which associate exclusively with members of host genus Pinus or Pseudotsuga, respectively.  R. truncatus is known to grow in association with Pinus hosts, particularly P. lambertiana, but has also been reported from forests exclusively dominated by Abies and Tsuga (Trappe et al. 2007, D. Luoma, personal observation).

Rhizopogon is one of the most common ectomycorrhizal symbionts of the pine family (Pinaceae) in the northern hemisphere. Commonly known as ‘false truffles’, the mushrooms of this genus provide food for both wildlife and humans (Maser et al. 2010). Rhizopogon species have also been widely used in forest restoration following natural and human-made disturbances and likely play an important role in facilitating soil carbon sequestration in mycorrhizal forests.

Please contact the PI for permission prior to the use of any data in publications.

References:

Trappe M, Evans F, Trappe JM. 2007. Field Guide to North American Truffles. Ten Speed Press, Berkeley, CA, USA.

Maser C, Claridge AW, Trappe JM. 2009. Trees, Truffles, and Beasts: How Forests Function. Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ, USA.