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Martín, María P. & Hanna Johannesson. Battarea phalloides and B. stevenii, insight into a long-standing taxonomic puzzle. Mycotaxon 76: 67-75. 2000.

ABSTRACT: Two species of Battarrea Pers., B. phalloides and B. stevenii, have been cited in Europe. According to some authors, B. phalloides has a gelatinous volva and smaller basidiomata than B. stevenii. However, other authors consider that these characters are not enough to separate the taxa at the species level, and consider B. stevenii a synonym of B. phalloides. The main purpose of this work was to try to resolve the boundaries between the two taxa, not only based on macroscopic and microscopic characters, but also through molecular techniques. Thirty-five basidiomata from different geographical areas (Austria, Burundi, France, Hungary, Italy, Mexico, Spain) were examined to define the macroscopic and microscopic characters. The collections were investigated with regard to basidioma size, presence or absence of gelatinous hyphae in the volva, spore size and spore ornamentation. No differences were observed in spore size. From 16 basidiomata, amplifications of the ITS regions, including 5.8S rDNA were obtained. No gelatinous hyphae were found in the volva of the B. phalloides basidiomata, and no other morphological characters support the separation of the two taxa. The sequence alignment of the specimens has no unambiguous parts and the sequence dissimilarities within B. phalloides specimens are higher than between B. stevenii and B. phalloides, suggesting that both taxa belong to the same species.

KEYWORDS: Battarrea, Tulostomatales, Basidiomycotina, taxonomy, rDNA


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