Fungalpedia – Note 202Lentinellus


Lentinellus P. Karst. 

Citation if using this entry: Bera et al. 2024 (in prep) – Fungalpedia, Basidiomycota 1.

Index FungorumMycoBank, Facesoffungi, GenBank, Fig. 1

Classification: Auriscalpiaceae, Russulales, Agaricomycetes, Basidiomycota, Fungi.

Lentinellus, the lamellate agaric belongs to Auriscalpiaceae Maas Geest., is primarily known for its white rot and wood decay properties. Initially, the genus was placed under the tribe Leucopaxilleae of the Tricholomataceae R. Heim ex Pouzar family (Segedin 1996). Later, based on the shared affinities with Auriscalpium Gray, Maas Geesteranus (1963) proposed the establishment of Auriscalpiaceae, encompassing both genera (Segedin 1996). Lentinellus has a perennial habit defined by its variously shaped, leathery textured basidiomata with a characteristic lacerate margin of lamellae (Segedin 1996). The basidiomata may be laterally or dorsally stipitate, with the surface ranging from smooth to tomentose or sometimes partially hairy (Segedin 1996). Another identifying feature of this genus is the strongly amyloid reaction of verrucose ornamented basidiospores (Segedin 1996). The cystidia structures are usually of two types the lamellar leptocystidia, which are thin-walled, fusiform to ventricose shaped, without any contents, and thick-walled, swollen pseudocystidia with the endings of the oleiferous system (Segedin 1996). The hyphae of pileipellis are in cutis arrangement, reflected in the pileus’s tomentum surface (Segedin 1996). All the trama and context hyphae may be amyloid (Segedin 1996). With all these morpho-characters, Lentinellus is easily recognizable. However, identifying different species can be challenging, and identifying different species can be difficult; thus, many previously described species have been synonymized (Pegler 1983Segedin 1996). 

Lentinellus has often been confused with another wood-decaying genus, Lentinus Fr.  Many species (for instance the type species, Lentinellus cochleatus (Pers.) P. Karst. were initially placed under Lentinus by Persoon (1825). However, the status of these two genera was later reviewed by Pegler (1983). The difference in basic morphological characters separated both genera and classified them under different systematic positions (Lentinellus in Russulales and Lentinus in Polyporales). In essence, there is a need for more precise and refined criteria for species differentiation within Lentinellus to address all the taxonomic complexities. The sole use of morphology has often led to considerable taxonomic confusions especially with the similar-looking taxa (Miller & Stewart 1971Pegler 1983Segedin 1996Miller & Methven 2000). McGhee (1999) conducted a comprehensive classification and phylogeny of Northern Hemisphere Lentinellus species with nrITS sequence data. Later, Lickey et al. (2003) showed the variability of nrSSU region in Lentinellus species, paving new advancements in molecular studies within Lentinellus. The distribution of Lentinellus has typically been associated with temperate forested areas worldwide (Segedin 1996), based on the extensive monographs by Pilát (1946), Watling & Gregory (1989), Segedin (1996), and Moreau et al. (1999). Later, Petersen & Hughes (2004) described 24 species of Lentinellus. Currently, as per Species Fungorum (2023), 35 species have been documented under Lentinellus

Synonyms: Hemicybe P. Karst, Lentinaria Pilát

Type species: Lentinellus cochleatus (Pers.) P. Karst. 

Other accepted species: (Species Fungorum – search Lentinellus

Figure 1 – Lentinellus crawfordii (holotype PDD 59758). a Basidiomata. b Basidiospores. c Basidia. d Leptocystidia. e Lamellar pseudocystidia. f Stipital pseudocystidia. g Pileal pseudocystidia. Scale bars: a = 20 mm, b = 10 μm, c-g = 20 μm. Redrawn from Segedin (1996)



Kotlaba F. 1972 – Taxonomic and nomenclatural notes on some Macromycetes. Ceska mykologie, 26, 217–222

Lickey EB, Hughes KW, Petersen RH. 2003 – Variability and phylogenetic incongruence of an SSU nrDNA group I intron in Artomyces, Auriscalpium, and Lentinellus (Auriscalpiaceae: Homobasidiomycetes). Molecular biology and evolution, 20(11), 1909–1916. 

Maas Geesteranus RA. 1963 – Hyphal structures in Hydnums II. Proceedings of the Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen, 66, 426–457.

McGhee LL. 1999 – Classification, biogeography, and phylogeny of Northern Hemisphere Lentinellus species. Chancellor’s Honors Program Projects. 

Miller AN, Methven AS. 2000 – Biological species concepts in eastern North American populations of Lentinellus. Mycologia, 92(4), 792–800. 

Miller Jr OK, Stewart L. 1971 – The genus Lentinellus. Mycologia, 63(2), 333–369. 

Moreau P-A, Roux P & Mascarell G. 1999 – Une étude du genre Lentinellus en Europe. Bulletin trimestriel de la Société Mycologique de France, 115, 279–373.

Pegler DN. 1983 – The genus Lentinus. A world monograph. Kew bulletin, additional series XKew, London, HMSO. 

Persoon CH. 1825 – Mycologia Europaea, 2–214. 

Petersen RH, Hughes KW. 2004 – A preliminary monograph of Lentinellus (Russulales).  Bibliotheca Mycologica, 198, Kramer, 1–270.  

Pilát A. 1946 – Monographie des espèces européennes du genre’Lentinus’ Fr. Section botanique du Musée National. 

Segedin BP. 1996 – A new species of Lentinellus (Hericiales, Lentinellaceae) and a revision of taxa attributed to Lentinellus in New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Botany, 34(2), 249–261.

Watling R & Gregory NM. 1989 – Crepidotus, Pleurotaceae and other pleurotoid agarics. British Fungus Flora agarics and boleti (D. M. Henderson, P. D. Orton & R. Watling, eds) 6, 1–157. HMSO, Edinburgh. 


Entry by

Ishika Bera, Center of Excellence in Fungal Research, Mae Fah Luang University, Chiang Rai 57100, Thailand


(Edited by Kevin D Hyde, Samaneh Chaharmiri-Dokhaharani, & Achala R. Rathnayaka)