Fungal endophytes represent a major component of plant microbiomes. Various aspects of these fungi such as their diversity and technological potential have been studied in detail. However, their distribution and diversity in a mangrove community has not been addressed. In this study, we report the presence of culturable fungal endophytes from 20 obligate mangrove hosts from south Andaman Islands. Phomopsis/Diaporthe was isolated from all the mangrove species studied while Xylaria, Colletotrichum and Phyllosticta were recorded from the majority of the mangroves studied. A phylogenetic analysis of representative Phomopsis/Diaporthe isolates clearly indicated the broad host range of this genus. Our study also highlighted the fact that leaf endophytes of mangroves are not unique with reference to their species diversity and frequency of occurrence when compared to those of terrestrial plants. These observations suggest that the extraordinary success of some fungal endophytes in colonizing taxonomically disparate hosts could be due to development of traits specific to their ecosystem.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Ecological Modelling
- Plant Science