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|Título:||Quality control by leaf-cutting ants: evidence from communities of endophytic fungi in foraged and rejected vegetation|
|Autor(es):||Rocha, Silma L.|
Jorge, Vanessa L.
Lucia, Terezinha M. C. Della
Barreto, Robert W.
Evans, Harry C. Evans
Elliot, Simon L.
|Abstract:||Leaf-cutting ants of the genera Acromyrmex and Atta forage vegetation for incorporation into their mutualistic fungal gardens. However, the presence of certain endophytic fungi in this predominantly leaf-based material could affect the fungal garden and thus the choice of material by the ants. The present study was conducted to document the endophytic fungal communities occurring in the vegetation being transported by workers of Atta laevigata into their nests and to compare this community structure with that of the vegetative material subsequently rejected from the nests. We found considerable diversity in the fungi isolated. Acremonium, Cylindrocladium, Drechslera, Epicoccum, Fusarium, Trichoderma, Ulocladium and two unidentified morphospecies were significantly more common in rejected compared with foraged material, and some of these genera include mycoparasites, which could represent a threat to the fungal gardens. Conversely, Colletotrichum, Pestalotiopsis, Phomopsis, Xylaria and an unidentified morphospecies were more common in carried compared with rejected material. The possibility that ants have a ‘quality-control’ mechanism based on the presence of antagonistic fungal endophytes is discussed, as is the potential use of these fungi as biocontrol agents against Attini pests.|
|Tipo de Acesso:||Springer Nature Switzerland AG.|
|Data do documento:||23-Set-2014|
|Aparece nas coleções:||Artigos|
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