Fungalpedia – Note 127 Calophoma


Calophoma Qian Chen & L. Cai

Citation when using this entry: Aumentado et al. in prep – Fungalpedia, plant pathogens. Mycosphere. 

Index FungorumFacesoffungiMycoBankGenBank, Fig *.

Ascomycota, Pezizomycotina, Dothideomycetes, Pleosporomycetidae, Pleosporales, Didymellaceae

Calophoma was established by Chen et al. (2015) with Calophoma clematidina as its type species. Species belonging to this genus are characterized by pycnidial conidiomata which can be subglobose to irregular, and they may be found on the agar surface or immersed. These conidiomata can occur as solitary entities or may be confluent. Conidiomata are ostiolate, but in older cultures, they may have an elongated neck. Micropycnidia are also present. The pycnidial wall is pseudoparenchymatous and consists of 2–6 layers, with the outer wall being pigmented. The conidiogenous cells are phialidic, hyaline, smooth, and vary in shape from globose to flask-shaped, ampulliform, or doliiform. The conidia vary both size and shape, including subglobose, subcylindrical, ellipsoidal, and somewhat obclavate-fusiform. They can be hyaline or slightly brown, with smooth and thin walls. The conidia are aseptate, but occasionally, large 1-septate conidia may be present, which can be eguttulate or guttulate. Chlamydospores are only observed in one species. They may be uni- or multicellular, with unicellular intercalary forms that are guttulate and have thick walls. Additionally, there are multicellular irregular dictyo/phragmosporous chlamydospores that appear somewhat botryoid. These forms may occur in combination with unicellular chlamydospores (Chen et al. 2015). 

Calophoma (Ca) was emended by Chen et al. (2015) to accommodate five species namely Ca. aquilegiicola (Phoma aquilegiicola), Ca. clematidina (Phoma clematidina), Ca. clematidis-rectae (Phoma clematidis-rectae), Ca. complanata (Phoma complanata), Ca. glaucii (Phoma glaucii), Ca. vodakii (syn. D. vodakii) and an unidentified species (CBS 186.55), previously belonging to Phoma with subglobose, subcylindrical, ellipsoidal, slightly obclavate-fusiform conidia and highly supported phylogenetic placement establishing the genus. There are 14 recognized species based on morpho-molecular sequence data based on recommended genetic markers, internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region, 28S ribosomal RNA gene (LSU), β-tubulin (β-tub), and RNA polymerase II second largest subunit (rpb2) (Maharachchikumbura et al. 2021Hou et al. 2020Crous et al. 2019Hyde et al. 20192020Tibpromma et al. 2017Chen et al. 2015). 

As a pathogen, Calophoma incites several symptoms such as leaf spots, and wilting of leaves, stems, or even the entire plant. Additionally, it causes internal blackening and girdling of the stem, often near the soil level, as well as root rot (van de Graaf 1999a1999bvan de Graaf 1998). Calophoma affects mostly weed species, is frequently regarded as a weed pathogen, and is used as a biocontrol agent against obnoxious/ invasive weed species (Sokornova et al. 2023Smith & Cole 1991). Pathogenicity assays were conducted on plant species including various Clematis spp. (Špetík et al. 2023Golzar et al. 2011Woudenberg et al. 2009van de Graaf 2001), Falcaria vulgaris (Karimzadeh et al. 2020), Pastinaca sativa (Sultana et al. 2021), Aegopodium podagraria (Hou et al. 2020), and Heracleum sosnowskyi (Sokornova et al. 2023Gasich et al. 2013) which severity reached from 40% to 70% necrotic area (Gasich et a. 2018). Calophoma complanata was reported to not only induce necrotic symptoms on the leaves and stems of Archangelica officinalis but also hinder the germination of schizocarps and prompt germ necrosis (Machowicz-Stefaniak et al. 2014). 


Type species: Calophoma clematidina (Thüm.) Qian Chen & L. Cai

For other species: Species Fungorum, search Calophoma for names 



Chen Q, Jiang JR, Zhang GZ, Cai L, Crous PW. 2015. Resolving the Phoma enigma. Studies in 

mycology 82, 137–217.

Crous PW, Carnegie AJ, Wingfield MJ, Sharma R, Mughini G et al. 2019 – Fungal Planet 

description sheets: 868–950. Persoonia: Molecular Phylogeny and Evolution of Fungi 42, 291.

Hou LW, Groenewald JZ, Pfenning LH, Yarden O et al. 2020 – The phoma-like dilemma. 

Studies in Mycology 96, 309–396.

Hyde KD, Tennakoon DS, Jeewon R, Bhat DJ, Maharachchikumbura SS et al. 2019 – Fungal 

diversity notes 1036–1150: taxonomic and phylogenetic contributions on genera and species of fungal taxa. Fungal Diversity 96, 1–242.

Hyde KD, de Silva NI, Jeewon R, Bhat DJ, Phookamsak R et al. 2020 – AJOM new records and 

collections of fungi: 1-100. Asian Journal of Mycology 3(1), 22–294.

Gasich EL, Berestetskiy AO, Khlopunova LB. Mycobiota of Heracleum species in north-west 

region of Russia and perspective micromycetes for Heracleum Sosnowskyi Control. 

Mikologiya i Fitopatologiya 47(5), 333–42.

Gasich EL, Khlopunova LB, Berestetskiy AO. 2018 – Effect of ecological factors on Calophoma 

complanata pathogenicity for Heracleum sosnowskyi. Mikologiya i fitopatologiya 52(3), 207–216.

Golzar H, Wang C, Willyams D. 2011 – First report of Phoma clematidina the cause of leaf 

spot-wilt disease of Clematis pubescens in Australia. Australasian Plant Disease Notes 6 (1), 87–90.

Karimzadeh S, Fotouhifar KB. 2020 – Report of some fungi associated with of leaf spot 

symptoms of self-growing plants in Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari province (Iran). Rostaniha 21(1), 121–140.

Machowicz-Stefaniak Z, Zalewska ED, Zimowska B, Król ED. 2014 – Pathogenicity of Phoma 

complanata (Tode) Desm. towards Angelica (Archangelica officinalis Hoffm.). Acta Scientiarum Polonorum Hortorum Cultus 13(6), 45–58.

Maharachchikumbura SS, Wanasinghe DN, Cheewangkoon R, Al-Sadi AM. 2021 – Uncovering 

the hidden taxonomic diversity of fungi in Oman. Fungal Diversity 106, 229–268.

Smith GR, Cole AL. 1991 – Phoma clematidina, causal agent of leafspot and wilt of Clematis in 

New Zealand. Australasian Plant Pathology 20, 67–72.

Sokornova SV, Gasich EL, Khlopunova LB, Alekseeva AN. 2023 – Ecological and Genetic 

Characteristics of the Phoma-Like Micromycete Calophoma complanata. Contemporary Problems of Ecology 16(4), 479–91.

Špetík M, Eichmeier A, Burgová J, Groenewald JZ, Crous PW. 2023 – Calophoma clematidina 

causing leaf spot and wilt on Clematis plants in the Czech Republic. Plant Disease PDIS-09.

Sultana F, Hossain MM. 2021 – Diseases of Vegetables Caused by Phoma spp. In Phoma: 

Diversity, Taxonomy, Bioactivities, and Nanotechnology. Cham: Springer International Publishing 91–119.

Tibpromma S, Hyde KD, Jeewon R, Maharachchikumbura SS, Liu JK, et al. 2017 – Fungal 

diversity notes 491–602: taxonomic and phylogenetic contributions to fungal taxa. Fungal diversity 83, 1–261.

van de Graaf P, O’Neill TM, Chartier-Hollis JM, Joseph ME. 2001 – Susceptibility of clematis 

varieties and species to stem infection by Phoma clematidina as an indicator for resistance to wilt. European Journal of Plant Pathology 107 (6), 607–614.

van de Graaf P. 1999a – Biology and Control of Phoma clematidina, causal Agent of Clematis 

Wilt. PhD thesis, University of Derby, Derby, UK.

van de Graaf P. 1999b – Biology and control of clematis wilt. Horticultural Development 

Council, UK. 

van de Graaf P, Joseph ME, Chartier-Hollis JM, O’Neill TM. 1998 – Root infection of cultivated 

clematis by Phoma clematidina, causal agent of clematis wilt. Proceedings 7th International Congress of Plant Pathology. Edinburgh, UK: British Society for Plant Pathology/International Society for Plant Pathology.

Woudenberg JHC, Aveskamp MM, de Gruyter J, Spiers AG, Crous PW. 2009 – Multiple 

Didymella teleomorphs are linked to the Phoma clematidina morphotype. Persoonia 22, 56–62.


Entry by

Herbert Dustin R. Aumentado, Center of Excellence in Fungal Research and School of Science, Mae Fah Luang University, Chiang Rai, Thailand 


Edited by Ruvishika S. Jayawardena & Kevin D. Hyde