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The diversity of aquatic Hyphomycetes in South America

A diversidade dos Hyphomycetes aquáticos nas águas continentais da América do Sul

Aquatic Hyphomycetes, also named Ingoldian or freshwater fungi, constitute a group of anamorphic fungi that are typically aquatic, producing tetraradiate, sigmoid or spherical conidia on submerged plant debris (leaf litter, petioles, bark, etc.). Mainly occurring in lotic systems, these fungi are considered to be one of the most active groups of organisms in the decomposition of leaf litter, and play a crucial role in the trophic chain. In South America, aquatic Hyphomycetes are mentioned for Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela, totalizing the report of about 90 species. Almost all studies are taxonomical, some with proper drawings and complete descriptions, but no keys have been provided yet, nor there is a specific culture collection for preserved strains. The published papers are still sporadic and dispersed, emphasizing a great need to improve the knowledge of the diversity of South American aquatic Hyphomycetes. The present review contents the check list of reported species until now, and has the aim to encourage the research concerned with aquatic Hyphomycetes in non explored regions of the continent.

anamorphic fungi; aquatic Hyphomycetes; biodiversity; Brazil; South America

Sociedade Brasileira de Microbiologia USP - ICB III - Dep. de Microbiologia, Sociedade Brasileira de Microbiologia, Av. Prof. Lineu Prestes, 2415, Cidade Universitária, 05508-900 São Paulo, SP - Brasil, Ramal USP 7979, Tel. / Fax: (55 11) 3813-9647 ou 3037-7095 - São Paulo - SP - Brazil