2012 Volume 54 Issue 1 Pages 19-28
Phakopsora meliosmae, a macrocyclic autoecious rust fungus, is reported to occur on several Meliosma species widely distributed in Asia. Despite the apparent broad host range, a recent molecular phylogenetic study indicated that two rust populations on Meliosma myriantha and Meliosma tenuis respectively in Japan were biologically distinct. To clarify the biological and taxonomic relationships of these populations, cross inoculations and comparative morphological examinations were carried out. Cross inoculations using basidiospores and aeciospores confirmed the macrocyclic, autoecious nature of the life cycle in both rust populations and showed that the two populations were distinct in their host specificity. Furthermore, they were found to be distinct in the structure of the aecial peridium surface, the size and wall thickness of uredinial paraphyses, and the urediniospore size and shape. Consequently, the fungal population on M. tenuis is taxonomically separated from P. meliosmae originally proposed for the fungus on M. myriantha. A new name, Phakopsora orientalis, is proposed for the fungus on M. tenuis.