Megaphylogeny Resolves Global Patterns of Mushroom Evolution


Torda Varga, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Krisztina Krizsán, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Csenge Földi, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Bálint Dima, Eötvös Loránd University
Marisol Sánchez-García, Clark University
Santiago Sánchez-Ramírez, University of Toronto
Gergely Szöllősi, Eötvös Loránd University
János Szarkándi, University of Szeged
Viktor Papp, Szent István University
László Albert, Hungarian Mycological Society
William Andreopoulos, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Claudio Angelini
Vladimír Antonín, Moravian Museum
Kerrie Barry, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Neale Bougher, Western Australian Herbarium
Peter Buchanan, Manaaki Whenua—Landcare Research
Bart Buyck, Sorbonne Université
Viktória Bense, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Pam Catcheside, State Herbarium of South Australia
Mansi Chovatia, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Jerry Cooper, Manaaki Whenua—Landcare Research
Wolfgang Dämon
Dennis Desjardin, San Francisco State University
Péter Finy
József Geml, Naturalis Biodiversity Center
Sajeet Haridas, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Karen Hughes, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Alfredo Justo, Clark University
Dariusz Karasiński, W. Szafer Institute of Botany, Polish Academy of Sciences
Ivona Kautmanova, Slovak National Museum
Brigitta Kiss, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Sándor Kocsubé, University of Szeged
Heikki Kotiranta, Finnish Environment Institute
Kurt LaButti, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Bernardo Lechner, Universidad de Buenos Aires
Kare Liimatainen, The Jodrell Laboratory, Royal Botanic Gardens
Anna Lipzen, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Zoltán Lukács
Sirma Mihaltcheva, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Louis Morgado, University of Oslo
Tuula Niskanen, The Jodrell Laboratory, Royal Botanic Gardens
Machiel Noordeloos, Naturalis Biodiversity Center
Robin Ohm, Utrecht University
Beatriz Ortiz-Santana, Center for Forest Mycology Research, Northern Research Station
Clark Ovrebo, University of Central Oklahoma
Nikolett Rácz, University of Szeged
Robert Riley, US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute
Anton Savchenko, University of Helsinki & University of Tartu
Anton Shiryaev, Russian Academy of Sciences
Karl Soop, Swedish Museum of Natural History
Viacheslav Spirin, University of Helsinki
Csilla Szebenyi, University of Szeged
Michal Tomšovský, Mendel University in Brno
Rodham Tulloss, Herbarium Rooseveltensis Amanitarum & The New York Botanical Garden
Jessie Uehling, University of California, Berkeley
Igor Grigoriev, University of California, Berkeley
Csaba Vágvölgyi, University of Szeged
Tamás Papp, University of Szeged
Francis Martin, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique
Otto Miettinen, University of Helsinki
David Hibbett, Clark University
László Nagy, Hungarian Academy of Sciences

Publication Date

March 2019

Document Type


Publication Title

Nature Ecology & Evolution





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Mushroom-forming fungi (Agaricomycetes) have the greatest morphological diversity and complexity of any group of fungi. They have radiated into most niches and fulfil diverse roles in the ecosystem, including wood decomposers, pathogens or mycorrhizal mutualists. Despite the importance of mushroom-forming fungi, large-scale patterns of their evolutionary history are poorly known, in part due to the lack of a comprehensive and dated molecular phylogeny. Here, using multigene and genome-based data, we assemble a 5,284-species phylogenetic tree and infer ages and broad patterns of speciation/extinction and morphological innovation in mushroom-forming fungi. Agaricomycetes started a rapid class-wide radiation in the Jurassic, coinciding with the spread of (sub)tropical coniferous forests and a warming climate. A possible mass extinction, several clade-specific adaptive radiations and morphological diversification of fruiting bodies followed during the Cretaceous and the Paleogene, convergently giving rise to the classic toadstool morphology, with a cap, stalk and gills (pileate-stipitate morphology). This morphology is associated with increased rates of lineage diversification, suggesting it represents a key innovation in the evolution of mushroom-forming fungi. The increase in mushroom diversity started during the Mesozoic-Cenozoic radiation event, an era of humid climate when terrestrial communities dominated by gymnosperms and reptiles were also expanding.