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IMC10 approaches! Have you registered yet?

The 10th International Mycological Congress (IMC10) is rapidly approaching. It is to be be held in Bangkok, Thailand, from 3–8 August 2014, and is hosted by the Thai Mycological Association (TMA) together with Kasetsart University, the National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), and the International Mycological Association (IMA). It is the first IMC to be held in south-east Asia and will continue the broad scope developed at IMC9 in Edinburgh in 2010, with the themes: Cell biology; Genetics, genomics and molecular biology; Phylogenetics, evolution, and systematics; Diversity and conservation; Environment, ecology, and interactions; Human, animal, and plant pathogenesis and control; and, Biotechnology and applied aspects. There will also be some interdisciplinary symposia.

The overall theme of IMC10 will be Fungal Biodiversity, Physiology and Ecology in a Changing Environment, and include keynote and plenary sessions, 56 symposia, over 300 oral as well as several hundred poster presentations, special interest group meetings and nomenclatural sessions throughout the five days. In addition, there will be pre- and post-congress workshops, meetings, and excursions on various special topics in mycology. More information on the developing programme can be obtained at https://doi.org/www.imc10.com/2014/program.html. The keynote lecture for the congress will be delivered by the internationally recognized CBS-KNAW Fungal Biodiversity Centre Director Pedro Crous on the theme “Linking Life”.

We expect this conference to be a significant platform designed to attract more than 1,500 renowned, as well as budding, mycologists from all over the world, and to provide an environment for presenting research, exchanging ideas, and establishing collaborative and strategic partnerships.

Thailand is a country of scenic diversity and ancient traditions, of tranquil temples, and modern urban excitement which should appeal to everyone who attends.

This is the major international event for mycologists regardless of specialisms, and as it occurs only every four years, be sure not to miss this opportunity and register now if you have not already done so.

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The IMC10 venue (the Queen Sirikit National Convention Center), Bangkok.

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The Emerald Temple, Bangkok.

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Bangkok at night.

Techniques in Mycology workshop at IMC10

How did you do that ? If anyone has ever asked you this question about some aspect of your work, then we want you in this workshop. Our goal is to start an on-line video library demonstrating common and not so common methods, techniques and tricks that mycologists use in their work. Any kind of technique is of interest, from those used in the field to collect fungi, to those used in the lab to culture or sequence fungi, to those used in the virtual world of computer software. Participants are asked to produce short videos (no more than 5 min, taken on any camera device that can provide a clear image, preferably with sound to explain what you are doing). We will group the videos into categories and screen them during the workshop. After the workshop we will add the authors of the videos and their institutional logos to the start of each video. These will be gathered into a “Mycomethods” channel on YouTube, linked to the IMA and ICTF websites, and the website of your own institution. We hope that this will stimulate the production of even more videos demonstrating neat mycological methods. Let’s capture the working knowledge of this generation of mycologists, so that the next generation can benefit from our experience.

The workshop will be held on Sunday 3 August 2014 from 09.00–16.00 hr and is limited to 70 participants. The workshop is free, but participants must buy lunch on site at ca 950 Baht. Registration is compulsory (https://doi.org/www.imc10.org), as we need to know how many lunches and coffees are needed.

IMA Genome-F: IMA Fungus to include fungal genome announcements

IMA GENOME-F is a new addition to IMA Fungus. The advent of inexpensive sequencing technologies now enables mycologists to quite literally sequence the genome of their favourite fungus. This has resulted in an exponential increase in the number of fungal genomes that have been sequenced. While some research groups have the resources to attempt extensive characterization of these genomes, many researchers either are unable to undertake such studies or have sequenced these fungal genomes with a very specific aim, which means that they have interrogated only a small portion of the genome. IMA GENOME-F aims at providing researchers with a vehicle to announce the genome sequence of a particular fungal species. In this way these genomes will be properly archived and available through standard literature searches.

These genome announcements are short, providing an explanation of the value of the genome sequence as well as details of the technology used to sequence the genome, the assembly that was performed as well as some summary statistics about the genome such as size, completeness, probable number of Open Reading frames and the number of contigs of the current assembly. The genome coverage should be in the order of 20X and available to the scientific community. We recommend that it should be submitted to a database such as NCBI.

In accordance with the journal’s practice of rapid publication, contributions to the series will be published on-line after review and acceptance, with final pagination, rather than in a separate section in each issue. Each contribution to the series will, however, be numbered and have a header in the form “IMA Genome-F 1: Ceratocystis fimbriata”. The first number in this series is included in this issue (pp. 357–358).

2014 CBS Spring Symposium: Genera and Genomes

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CBS Symposium

Previous important and successful CBS Spring Symposia, One Fungus = One Name (2011), One Fungus = Which Name (2012), and One Fungus = Which Genes (2013) had a great impact on the mycological community. The CBS-KNAW Fungal Biodiversity Centre has now started the preparation of the 2014 Spring Symposium, “Genera and Genomes” which is to take place on Thursday–Friday 24–25 April 2014. The venue will again be the Trippenhuis, the home of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences in Amsterdam.

The main topic of the symposium will be how to integrate multigene DNA and genome data to make informed decisions about generic limits, and progress in merging asexual and sexual generic names following the new provisions of the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants. A draft list of names proposed for protection to start the debate, included as the last paper in this issue of IMA Fungus, will be discussed and opportunities given for working groups to report. Some consideration will also be given as to how to proceed from this basis to a synthetic work with keys to genera. Furthermore, procedures to fix the genetic application of generic names by obtaining ex-type or ex-epitype isolates for whole genome analysis need to be addressed. Subsequent genomic information will provide reference data sets for the backbone of a stable taxonomic system to understand how fungi interact in natural and synthetic communities.

Contributed papers are welcome, and will be selected for either oral or poster presentations. Registration for the two-day meeting will be 250.00 € (to include coffee/tea, lunches, and a cocktail party).

The symposium will be followed, on Saturday 26 April 2014, by meetings of several commissions and groups at the CBS-KNAW Fungal Biodiversity Centre in Utrecht, and conclude with a fungal barbeque. Watch the CBS website (https://doi.org/www.cbs.knaw.nl) for further information as it becomes available.

Mushrooms PRO: a new App for smartphones

The German company NATURE MOBILE has developed a new tool for all smartphone users designed to assist with identifying and collecting mushrooms. With the mobile application Mushrooms PRO, collectors can start to learn about the fascinating world of mushrooms in next to no time. The identification filter for appearance and other features aims to give precise results.

Once a seemingly edible mushroom is found, fundamental doubts may develop and replace the initial euphoria. Is it edible, perhaps toxic, or even hallucinogenic ? The application Mushrooms PRO aims to assist with species identification. The program includes more than 300 species and over 2000 high-resolution images to facilitate recognition. For each mushroom, there is a description and a selection of images from different perspectives and angles. Mushrooms PRO includes several filters to aid searching and identifying mushrooms through a choice of visual and other characteristic features (appearance and scent, edibility and taste, basidiome type, habitat, family, medicinal uses, and poison) to reduce the list of candidate species for a particular find. There is also a quiz to test and to learn users’ knowledges by guessing species from pictures.

The content of this App has been compiled by Ewald Gerhardt, mycological consultant to, and former employee of, the Botanical Gardens and Botanical Museum in Berlin. The complete App is available in German, English, French, and Spanish, and common names in many other languages are provided. Recently added is an “Online Mushroom Consultation” through which Ewald and amateur mycologist around the world can support users who submit a photograph in making an identification. No internet connection is required, so the App can be used when out in the woods.

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The latest version, 1.4.1, was released on 21 October 2013, and is a modest 9.9 €. For further information see the NATURE MOBILE website (https://doi.org/itunes.apple.com/de/app/mushrooms-pro-nature-mobile/id523607704?l=en&mt=8).

New edition of popular fungal biodiversity calendar: Battle of the pixels continues!

In April 2013 the CBS-KNAW Fungal Biodiversity Centre launched its new (12 month) fungal calendar series, focusing on the beauty of fungal biodiversity.

The next calendar, for the year 2015, is starting preparation and will be distributed at the Fungal Genera and Genomes symposium on 24–25 April 2014 in Amsterdam (see p. (36) in this issue). To this end, we invite all those taking photographs or micrographs to submit their most beautiful fungal illustrations. Photographs of fungi cultivated in the laboratory, or observed in nature, will be considered. Illustrations should be identified by the species name, and preferably also have a DNA barcode. Images should be in landscape layout, at least 300 dpi (3600 × 2400 px) and in full colour.

If the image is selected, the mycologist who took the actual photograph and submitted it for publication will receive three copies of the calendar, and a choice of any CBS publication. Submissions for the 2015 calendar are welcome until 15 February 2014.

The photographs will subsequently be incorporated into MycoBank.

Submissions can either be sent to p.crous@cbs.knaw.nl or r.samson@cbs.knaw.nl, but for larger files we recommend using https://doi.org/www.wetransfer.com.

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January 2014: Coprinus comatus. Photo Jens H. Petersen.

HUV smut collection finds a new home down-under

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Herbarium Ustilaginales Vánky (HUV), comprising some 22,000 collections (including numerous name-bearing types) is undeniably the most important extant reference of collection of smut fungi in the world. Kálmán Vanky, author of numerous books and papers on smut fungi, including Smut Fungi of the World (2012; see IMA Fungus 3(1): (34), 2012), is now aged 83 years. Kálmán “has decided to reduce [his] activity with the smut fungi” and has arranged for the HUV collection, together with associated materials and literature, to be relocated from his home in Tübingen, Germany, to the Queensland Plant Pathology Herbarium, Plant Pathology Building, 80 Meiers Road, Indooroopilly, QD 4068, Australia (BRIP). The collection arrived in Brisbane in October 2013, and requests for loans should be addressed to the Director, Roger G. Shivas (roger.shivas@daff.qld. gov.au). It is gratifying that this important collection is now safeguarded for future generations and I am sure all mycologists will wish Kálmán and his wife many relatively smut-free and more relaxing years!

The acquisition of this collection further enhances BRIP as a world centre of excellance for smut systematics. Keys to the identification of the smuts of Australia and Thailand are now publically available from the collection’s website: https://doi.org/collections.daff.qld.gov.au/web/key.smutfungi for the Australian key and https://doi.org/collections.daff.qld.gov.au/wed/key/thaismutfungi/index.php for the Thai key.

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Luangsa-ard, J.J.D., Crous, P.W. & Seifert, K.A. News. IMA Fungus 4, 35–38 (2013) doi:10.1007/BF03449309

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