Hybrid fungal endophytes symbiotic with the grass Lolium pratense

K. D. Craven, J. D. Blankenship, A. Leuchtmann, K. Hignight, C. L. Schardl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

84 Scopus citations


Classification of endophytes inhabiting Lolium pratense (= Festuca pratensis) based on morphological and molecular phylogenetic characteristics is reported. From an extensive survey of L. pratense collected throughout Europe, we concluded that the overwhelmingly predominant endophyte was Neotyphodium x uncinatum. We constructed phylogenies based on three unlinked, nuclear genes and analyzed allozymes to evaluate the relationship of N. x uncinatum to Epichloë endophytes. Our results suggest that N. x uncinatum is an interspecific hybrid of two Epichloë species. A second, much rarer hybrid endophyte was isolated from L. pratense which may have shared one of its two Epichloë ancestors with N. x uncinatum. This second isolate is a previously undescribed species for which we propose the name Neotyphodium x siegelii.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-73
Number of pages30
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 30 2001


  • Clavicipitaceae
  • Epichloë
  • Festuca pratensis
  • Hypocreales
  • Neotyphodium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Plant Science


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