Xerotolerant fungi in house dust: taxonomy of Spiromastix, Pseudospiromastix and Sigleria gen. nov. in Spiromastigaceae (Onygenales, Eurotiomycetes)

Mycologia. 2016 Jan-Feb;108(1):135-56. doi: 10.3852/15-065. Epub 2015 Nov 17.


During a global investigation of fungi in house dust, we isolated six novel arthroconidial fungi. Phylogenies from combined analysis of nuc rDNA 18S, 28S and internal transcribed spacers sequences demonstrated that these fungi and two species preserved in culture collections represent undescribed species of Spiromastigaceae, Onygenales. Seven of the eight species lacked sexual states and only characters of asexual states and growth rates on different media could be used to characterize them. The eighth species produced ascomata only on water agar. We introduce six new species and one new combination in Spiromastix and validate the recently proposed family Spiromastigaceae, genus Pseudospiromastix and combination Ps. tentaculata. The new genus Sigleria is proposed for two new species that differ from Spiromastix by conidiophore branching patterns, slower growth and a limited ability to utilize nitrate as a sole N source. A key to the three genera of Spiromastigaceae, Spiromastix, Pseudospiromastix and Sigleria, is provided. Phylogenetic analyses support the placement of Spiromastigaceae within Onygenales.

Keywords: Melbourne Code; microbiology of the built environment; phylogeny; systematics; xerotolerant fungi.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • DNA, Fungal / chemistry
  • DNA, Fungal / genetics
  • DNA, Ribosomal / chemistry
  • DNA, Ribosomal / genetics
  • DNA, Ribosomal Spacer / chemistry
  • DNA, Ribosomal Spacer / genetics
  • Dust
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Onygenales / classification*
  • Onygenales / cytology
  • Onygenales / genetics
  • Onygenales / growth & development
  • Phylogeny
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Species Specificity
  • Spores, Fungal


  • DNA, Fungal
  • DNA, Ribosomal
  • DNA, Ribosomal Spacer
  • Dust