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To enhance the understanding of the evolution of the Kingdom Fungi, 1500+ species were sampled for eight gene loci across all major fungal clades, plus a subset of taxa for a suite of morphological and ultrastructural characters with resulting data: AFTOL Molecular Database (generated by WASABI - Web Accessible Sequence Analysis for Biological Inference), Blast search the AFTOL Database (generated by WASABI), AFTOL primers (generated by WASABI), AFTOL primers by species (generated by WASABI), AFTOL alignments, and the AFTOL Structural and Biochemical Database. Users may submit samples to the AFTOL project. AFTOL is a collaboration centered around four universities in the United States: Duke University (Francois Lutzoni and Rytas Vilgalys), Clark University (David Hibbett), Oregon State University (Joey Spatafora), and University of Minnesota (David McLaughlin). Participants throughout the world have donated vouchers, taxon samples, and gene sequences. The aim of the project is to reconstruct the fungal tree of life using all available data for eight loci (nuclear ribosomal DNA: LSU, SSU, ITS (including 5.8s, ITS1 and ITS2); RNA polymerase II: RPB1, RPB2; elongation factor 1-alpha; mitochondrial SSU rDNA, and mitochondrial ATP synthase protein subunit 6). A further objective of this study is to summarize and integrate current knowledge regarding fungal subcellular features within this new phylogenetic framework. The name of the bioinformatic package developed for AFTOL is WASABI which provides an efficient communication platform to facilitate the collection and dissemination of molecular data to (and from) the laboratories and participants. All molecular data can be viewed, downloaded, verified, and corrected by the participants of AFTOL. A central goal of the WASABI interface is to establish an automated analysis framework that includes basecalling of newly generated chromatograms, contig assembly, quality verification of sequences (including a local BLAST), sequence alignment, and congruence test. Gene sequences that pass all tests and are finally verified by their authors will undergo automated phylogenetic analysis on a regular schedule. Although all steps are initially carried out noninteractively, the users can verify and correct the results at any step and thus initiate the reanalysis of dependent data.

URL: http://www.aftol.org/

Resource ID: nlx_64804     Resource Type: Resource     Version: Latest Version


cytology, morphology, phylogeny, ultrastructure, primer, alignment, blast, sequence, taxonomy, structure, biochemical, subcellular, organism-related portal, data analysis service, culture, sporocarp, dna, pcr product, molecular, molecule, gene sequence

Additional Resource Types

Data Set, Biospecimen Repository, Data Repository






Assembling the Fungal Tree of Life

Parent Organization

Funding Information

NSF, EF-0228671, NSF 0090301


The community can contribute to this resource



Original Submitter


Version Status


Submitted On

12:00am July 25, 2011

Originated From


Changes from Previous Version

  • Description was changed
  • Additional Resource Types was changed

Version 2

Created 2 months ago by Christie Wang

Version 1

Created 4 years ago by Anonymous

Assembling the Fungal Tree of Life: constructing the structural and biochemical database.

  • Celio GJ
  • Mycologia
  • 2007 9

A major goal of the Assembling the Fungal Tree of Life project is to create a searchable database of selected ultrastructural and biochemical characters from published and new data for use in phylogenetic and other analyses. While developing this database such issues as evaluating specimen fixation quality in published micrographs, organizing data to accommodate characters that were dependent on location and developmental stage, and requiring accountability of data contributors were addressed. Character states for three traits, septal pore apparatus, nuclear division and spindle pole body cycle, are illustrated, and character states are resolved with maximum parsimony and plotted on a summary cladogram of known phylogenetic relationships of the Fungi. The analysis illustrates the inherent phylogenetic signal of these characters, the paucity of comparable characters and character states in subcellular studies and the challenges in establishing a comprehensive structural and biochemical database of the Fungi.

Assembling the fungal tree of life: progress, classification, and evolution of subcellular traits.

  • Lutzoni F
  • Am. J. Bot.
  • 2004 9

Based on an overview of progress in molecular systematics of the true fungi (Fungi/Eumycota) since 1990, little overlap was found among single-locus data matrices, which explains why no large-scale multilocus phylogenetic analysis had been undertaken to reveal deep relationships among fungi. As part of the project "Assembling the Fungal Tree of Life" (AFTOL), results of four Bayesian analyses are reported with complementary bootstrap assessment of phylogenetic confidence based on (1) a combined two-locus data set (nucSSU and nucLSU rDNA) with 558 species representing all traditionally recognized fungal phyla (Ascomycota, Basidiomycota, Chytridiomycota, Zygomycota) and the Glomeromycota, (2) a combined three-locus data set (nucSSU, nucLSU, and mitSSU rDNA) with 236 species, (3) a combined three-locus data set (nucSSU, nucLSU rDNA, and RPB2) with 157 species, and (4) a combined four-locus data set (nucSSU, nucLSU, mitSSU rDNA, and RPB2) with 103 species. Because of the lack of complementarity among single-locus data sets, the last three analyses included only members of the Ascomycota and Basidiomycota. The four-locus analysis resolved multiple deep relationships within the Ascomycota and Basidiomycota that were not revealed previously or that received only weak support in previous studies. The impact of this newly discovered phylogenetic structure on supraordinal classifications is discussed. Based on these results and reanalysis of subcellular data, current knowledge of the evolution of septal features of fungal hyphae is synthesized, and a preliminary reassessment of ascomal evolution is presented. Based on previously unpublished data and sequences from GenBank, this study provides a phylogenetic synthesis for the Fungi and a framework for future phylogenetic studies on fungi.