Characterization and Genome Analysis of Cladobotryum mycophilum, the Causal Agent of Cobweb Disease of Morchella sextelata in China

J Fungi (Basel). 2023 Mar 27;9(4):411. doi: 10.3390/jof9040411.


Cobweb disease is a fungal disease that can cause serious damage to edible mushrooms worldwide. To investigate cobweb disease in Morchella sextelata in Guizhou Province, China, we isolated and purified the pathogen responsible for the disease. Through morphological and molecular identification and pathogenicity testing on infected M. sextelata, we identified Cladobotryum mycophilum as the cause of cobweb disease in this region. This is the first known occurrence of this pathogen causing cobweb disease in M. sextelata anywhere in the world. We then obtained the genome of C. mycophilum BJWN07 using the HiFi sequencing platform, resulting in a high-quality genome assembly with a size of 38.56 Mb, 10 contigs, and a GC content of 47.84%. We annotated 8428 protein-coding genes in the genome, including many secreted proteins, host interaction-related genes, and carbohydrate-active enzymes (CAZymes) related to the pathogenesis of the disease. Our findings shed new light on the pathogenesis of C. mycophilum and provide a theoretical basis for developing potential prevention and control strategies for cobweb disease.

Keywords: Cladobotryum mycophilum; Morchella sextelata; cobweb disease; identification; whole genome sequencing.