Entomopathogenic fungi

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A synopsis of the abundant widespread neotropical fungi Ophiocordyceps unilateralis (likely a group of species) from Wikipedia [1] provides an introduction to this topic:

Ophiocordyceps unilateralis is an entomopathogen, or insect-pathogenising fungus, discovered by the British naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace in 1859, and currently found predominantly in tropical forest ecosystems. O. unilateralis, also referred to as a zombie fungus, infects ants of the Camponotini tribe, with the full pathogenesis being characterized by alteration of the behavioral patterns of the infected ant. Infected hosts leave their canopy nests and foraging trails for the forest floor, an area with a temperature and humidity suitable for fungal growth; they then use their mandibles to affix themselves to a major vein on the underside of a leaf, where the host remains until its eventual death. The process leading to mortality takes 4–10 days, and includes a reproductive stage where fruiting bodies grow from the ant's head, rupturing to release the fungus's spores. O. unilateralis is in turn also susceptible to fungal infection itself, an occurrence which can limit its impact on ant populations, which has otherwise been known to devastate ant colonies.

The genus of ant infecting fungi were once all in the genus Cordyceps but most have been moved to the genus Ophiocordyceps (Sung et al. 2007).

Species

Sortable table
Ant Fungus citation
Atta cephalotes Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Bothroponera pachyderma Ophiocordyceps australis Africa and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus aberrans Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus americanus Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus atriceps Ophiocordyceps camponoti-atricipis South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus atriceps Ophiocordyceps lloydii South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus atriceps Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus balzani Ophiocordyceps camponoti-balzani South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus bispinosus Ophiocordyceps camponoti-bispinosi South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus brutus Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus buchneri Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus cruentatus Ophiocordyceps halabalaensis Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus cruentatus Ophiocordyceps ridleyi Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus simillimus indianus Ophiocordyceps camponoti-indiani South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus japonicus Ophiocordyceps formicarum Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus sanctaefidei leonhardi Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus ligniperda Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus melanoticus Ophiocordyceps camponoti-melanotici South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus novogranadensis Ophiocordyceps camponoti-novogranadensis South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus obscuripes Ophiocordyceps formicarum Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus obscuripes Ophiocordyceps pulvinata Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus obscuripes Ophiocordyceps sessilis Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus paradoxus Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus pennsylvanicus Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus piceus Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus rufipes Ophiocordyceps camponoti-rufipedis South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus saundersi(?) Ophiocordyceps camponoti-saundersi Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus saundersi(?) Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus sericeiventris Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus sp. Ophiocordyceps irangiensis Africa and Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus sp. Ophiocordyceps japonensis Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus sp. Ophiocordyceps lloydii var. binata South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus sp. Ophiocordyceps rami Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus sp. Ophiocordyceps septa Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Camponotus vividus Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Cephalotes atratus Ophiocordyceps cucumispora South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Cephalotes atratus Ophiocordyceps kniphofioides South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Cephalotes atratus Ophiocordyceps evansii South America Sanjuan et al. 2015
Dinoponera gigantea Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Dolichoderus attelaboides Ophiocordyceps cucumispora var. dolichoderi South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Dolichoderus attelaboides Ophiocordyceps kniphofioides var. dolichoderi South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Dolichoderus bispinosus Ophiocordyceps kniphofioides var. monacidis South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Echinopla melanarctos Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Formica fusca Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Formica polyctena Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Formica pratensis Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Formica rufa Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Formica sanguinea Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Formica sp. Ophiocordyceps subunilateralis South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Megaponera analis Ophiocordyceps australis Africa and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Megaponera analis Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Myrmica laevinodis Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Odontomachus sp. Cordyceps morakotii Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Pachycondyla crassinoda Ophiocordyceps australis South America Sanjuan et al. 2015
Pachycondyla harpax Ophiocordyceps evansii South America Sanjuan et al. 2015
Pachycondyla impressa Ophiocordyceps evansii South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Pachycondyla striata Ophiocordyceps australis Africa and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Paltothyreus tarsatus Ophiocordyceps australis Africa and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Paltothyreus tarsatus Cordyceps carnata Africa Shrestha et al. 2017
Paltothyreus tarsatus Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Paraponera clavata Ophiocordyceps australis Africa and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Paraponera clavata Cordyceps doiana South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Paraponera clavata Ophiocordyceps ponerinarum South America Sanjuan et al. 2015
Phrynoponera sp. Ophiocordyceps australis Africa and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis armata Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis decemdentata Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis fissa Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis furcata Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis hippomanes Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis laboriosa Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis lamellidens Ophiocordyceps unilateralis var. clavata Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis latharis Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis latispina Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis militaris Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis monista Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis proxima Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis revoili Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis rufofemorata Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis sp. Ophiocordyceps irangiensis Africa and Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis sp. Ophiocordyceps myrmecophila Asia, Europe, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
Polyrhachis sulcata Ophiocordyceps unilaterialis Asia, North and South America Shrestha et al. 2017
xxx Cordyceps myrmecogena Asia Shrestha et al. 2017
xxx Cordyceps pilifera South America Shrestha et al. 2017

References

  • Sanjuan, T. I., A. E. Franco-Molano, R. M. Kepler, J. W. Spatafora, J. Tabima, A. M. Vasco-Palacios, and S. Restrepo. 2015. Five new species of entomopathogenic fungi from the Amazon and evolution of neotropical Ophiocordyceps. Fungal Biology. 119:901-916. doi:10.1016/j.funbio.2015.06.010
  • Shrestha, B., E. Tanaka, M. W. Hyun, J. G. Han, C. S. Kim, J. W. Jo, S. K. Han, J. Oh, J. M. Sung, and G. H. Sung. 2017. Mycosphere Essay 19. Cordyceps species parasitizing hymenopteran and hemipteran insects. Mycosphere. 8:1424-1442. doi:10.5943/mycosphere/8/9/8
  • Sung, G.-H., N. L. Hywel-Jones, J.-M. Sung, J. J. Luangsa-ard, B. Shrestha, and J. W. Spatafora. 2007. Phylogenetic classification of Cordyceps and the clavicipitaceous fungi. Studies in Mycology. 57:5-59. doi:10.3114/sim.2007.57.01
  • Sobczak, J. F., L. F. A. Costa, J. Carvalho, G. Salgado-Neto, J. Moura-Sobczak, and Y. F. Messas. 2017. The zombie ants parasitized by the fungi Ophiocordyceps camponotiatricipis (Hypocreales: Ophiocordycipitaceae): new occurrence and natural history. Mycosphere. 8:1261-1266. doi:10.5943/mycosphere/8/9/1