rDNA-ITS sequence of Serpula lacrymans and other important indoor rot fungi and taxon-specific priming PCR for their detection
O Schmidt, U Moreth
Taxon-specific priming polymerase chain reaction (TSPP) is a powerful molecular tool for fungal diagnosis. For its application to indoor rot fungi, the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) of the ribosomal DNA (rDNA) of the main fungal species causing wood rot in European buildings was amplified with the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The ITS region was sequenced. The complete sequences are presented. From base sequence divergency among the fungi, species-specific oligonucleotide primers were designed for TSPP. These marker molecules were suitable for the differential diagnosis of the dry rot fungus, Serpula lacrymans, the wild merulius, S. himantioides, the oak polypore, Donkioporia expansa, the brown cellar fungus, Coniophora puteana, the broad-spored white polypore, Antrodia vaillantii, the sap polypore, Tyromyces placenta, and the yellow-red gill polypore, Gloeophyllum sepiarium. Each specific marker identified isolates of its respective target species. Cross reaction with 'foreign' fungi was the exception. Species identification from unknown field samples from rot damage in buildings is also possible, because DNA from contaminating organisms does not response to the specific primers. Our variant of the technique is fast, because no preceding fungal pure cultures, no special DNA extraction/purification, and no restriction by endonucleases are necessary.