Hermatomyces maharashtraense Rajeshkumar, Wijayaw., N. Ashtekar, S. Lad & G. Anand, sp. nov. (Fig. 6)

MycoBank number: MB 558559; Index Fungorum number: IF 558559; Facesoffungi number: FoF 10419;

Etymology: named after Maharashtra State, where this fungus is native.

Holotype: AMH 10303, on unidentified decaying wood

Mycelium mostly superficial or immersed, composed of a loose or compact network of repent, branched, septate, rough and thick-walled, pale to dark brown hyphae. Sexual morph: Undetermined. Asexual morph: Colonies on natural substrate forming sporodochial conidiomata, subiculate, superficial, scattered, circular or oval, blackish brown, velvety. Conidiophores macronematous, mononematous, simple, straight or flexuous, septate, smooth, hyaline to pale brown, often corresponding to conidiogenous cells, 33‒53 μm long, 5‒10.5 μm wide. Conidiogenous cells monoblastic, integrated, terminal, determinate, cylindrical, smooth, hyaline. Conidia monomorphic, lenticular, thick-walled, globose or subglobose in front view, broadly ellipsoidal in lateral view, smooth, solitary, dry, muriform, divided longitudinally into two halves, constricted at both ends, occasionally slightly constricted at some septa, often carrying remnant of conidiogenous cell at base, 49‒60 μm long, 35‒55.5 μm wide. Conidia are bunched in a layer of hyaline globose or bubble-like basal cells of sporodochia, single or in chain, 20‒27.5 μm diam.

Culture characteristics: Colonies on MEA at 25±2 ºC after 7 days. Grey to grey-brown, slow-growing, 15‒25 mm diam. Reverse dark brown to black.

Material examined: India, Maharashtra, Mulshi, on dead wood, 23 July 2018, Rajeshkumar & Sneha Lad, holotype AMH 10303; ex-type living culture NFCCI 4879; ibid., NFCCI 4880.

GenBank accession numbers: NFCCI 4879; LSU: MZ099917 ITS: MZ147016 TEF1: MZ130659 rpb2: MZ130660. NFCCI 4880; LSU: MZ147042 ITS: MZ147019 TEF1: MZ130661 rpb2: MZ130662.

Notes: Hermatomyces maharashtraense is similar to H. trangensis in having a single type of lenticular conidia, globose or subglobose in the front view and broadly ellipsoidal or oblong in the lateral view, smooth-walled and sporulating profusely in culture. The conidial dimensions of H. maharashtraense are however, significantly larger than H. trangensis (49‒60 × 35‒55.5 μm vs. 27.5‒35 × 25‒32.5 μm). Hermatomyces clematidis is dimorphic and differs from H. maharashtraense in its smaller, 30‒45 × 24‒31 μm conidia. Phylogeny of the new species H. maharashtraense is based on ITS, LSU (not shown), and secondary barcode genes tef1 and rpb2. Even though the ITS region poorly resolves Hermatomyces species, LSU and combined tef1 and rpb2 analyses established an independent lineage of the new species closely allied to H. clematidis and H. trangensis (Fig. 7).

Figure 6 Hermatomyces maharashtraense (AMH 10303, holotype). a-c Sporodochial conidiomata (c inset conidia front view). d Conidia with hyaline globose basal cells. e-i Mature conidia front view with basal attachment. Scale bars = 10 μm.