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Lactifluus bicapillus (Russulales, Russulaceae), a new species from the Guineo-Congolian rainforest
expand article infoEske De Crop, Jonas Lescroart, André-Ledoux Njouonkou§, Ruben De Lange, Kobeke Van de Putte, Annemieke Verbeken
‡ Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
§ University of Bamenda, Bamenda, Cameroon
Open Access

Abstract

The milkcap genus Lactifluus is one of the most common ectomycorrhizal genera within Central African rainforests. During a field trip to the Dja Biosphere Reserve in Cameroon, a new Lactifluus species was found. Molecular and morphological analyses indicate that the species belongs to Lactifluus section Xerampelini and we formally describe it here as Lactifluus bicapillus sp. nov.

Keywords

Ectomycorrhizal fungi, Gilbertiodendron, Lactarius, phylogeny, taxonomy, tropical Africa, Uapaca

Introduction

Rainforests occur in Central Africa and form the main vegetation type in the Guineo-Congolian region (White 1983). Large parts of southern Cameroon and northern Gabon are covered by rainforest, characterised by high humidity, closed canopies, and competition for light in the understory. Common tree species within these rainforests, such as the Dja Biosphere Reserve, include ectomycorrhizal (ECM) species from the Phyllanthaceae (e.g. Uapaca spp. Baill.) and the Fabaceae (i.e. Gilbertiodendron dewevrei (De Wild.) J.Léonard) (Sonké and Couvreur 2014). Uapaca species mainly occur mixed with other tree species, whereas G. dewevrei forms more or less monodominant stands, mixed with an occasional Uapaca species. These trees are typical hosts for ECM fungi and Russulaceae have been repeatedly recorded as associated with these trees (Verbeken and Walleyn 2010; De Crop et al. 2016; Delgat et al. 2017; T.W. Henkel pers. comm.).

Within Central African rainforests, the ECM Russulaceae genera Russula Pers. and Lactifluus (Pers.) Roussel are abundant (Douanla-Meli and Langer 2009; Verbeken and Buyck 2002; Verbeken et al. 2008; Verbeken and Walleyn 2010). The milkcap genus Lactifluus is mainly distributed in the tropics (De Crop et al. 2017). It is a species-rich genus with about 160 species distributed worldwide, of which the majority is found in tropical Asia (Le et al. 2007b; Stubbe et al. 2010; Van de Putte et al. 2010), tropical Africa (Van de Putte et al. 2009; Verbeken and Walleyn 2010; De Crop et al. 2012, 2016; Maba et al. 2014, 2015a, b; Delgat et al. 2017; De Lange et al. 2018) and the Neotropics (Henkel et al. 2000; Miller et al. 2002; Smith et al. 2011; Sá et al. 2013; Sá and Wartchow 2013). The genus is relatively understudied and many species remain undescribed due to this mainly tropical distribution. Furthermore, the genus is known for its many species complexes with morphologically cryptic species (Stubbe et al. 2010; Van de Putte et al. 2010, 2012; De Crop et al. 2014; De Crop et al. 2017).

About 20 Lactifluus species are known from the rainforests of Central Africa (Verbeken and Walleyn 2010). The actual diversity is expected to be higher for several reasons: (i) the ECM flora is present in most parts of the tropical African rainforest, (ii) most countries in the region are understudied due to difficult political situations or challenging sampling conditions, (iii) seasonality in the rainforest is less pronounced, which makes it difficult to assess the exact fruiting period of these fungi and the fruiting of fungi can be missed during short sampling periods, and (iv) Lactifluus is known for its morphologically cryptic diversity with several species complexes occurring. Traditional species descriptions were often based on morphology and this morphologically cryptic diversity makes it difficult to correctly assess the number of species based on morphology alone.

During fieldwork in Cameroon in 2012 and 2014, several Lactifluus specimens were found morphologically resembling yet different from the described species within L. subg. Pseudogymnocarpi (Pacioni & Lalli) De Crop. The phylogenetic results of De Crop et al. (2017), based on four nuclear genes, revealed that this species is new to science. A preliminary microscopic study confirmed the deviating morphology of the Cameroonian collections and a more detailed study of all available material was initiated. In this study, molecular and morphological examinations were performed, the collections were compared with closely related species, and a new species, Lactifluus bicapillus, was described based on these results.

Methods

Sampling

Sampling expeditions in Cameroon were carried out in May 2012 and May 2014, in the Guineo-Congolian rainforest of the Dja Biosphere Reserve (East Region of Cameroon), mainly in the vicinity of Somalomo and Lomié. During each expedition, four collections were made of an unknown and putative new milkcap species with characteristics of L. subg. Pseudogymnocarpi. The collections were found in either monodominant stands of Gilbertiodendron dewevrei, or mixed stands with Uapaca guineensis Müll. Arg., U. acuminata (Hutch.) Pax & K. Hoffm., and U. paludosa Aubrév. & Leandri as the main ECM hosts. Specimens were dried using a field drier and candles. The studied collections were deposited in the fungal herbarium of Ghent University (GENT).

Morphology

Macroscopic features were all based on fresh material described in the field. Colour codes refer to Kornerup and Wanscher (1978). Microscopic features were studied from dried material. Morphological terminology followed Verbeken and Walleyn (2010). Elements of the pileipellis and hymenium were mounted in Congo Red in L4. Sections of the pileipellis and stipitipellis were first mounted in 10% KOH to enhance cell expansion and then mounted in Congo Red dissolved in water. Basidium length excludes sterigmata length. Measurements are given as MIN–MAX, except for basidiospores. Basidiospores were measured in side view in Melzer’s reagent, excluding the ornamentation, and measurements are given as described in Nuytinck and Verbeken (2005): (MIN) [Ava −2 × SDa] – AvaAvb – [Avb + 2 × SDb] (MAX), in which Ava/b = lowest/highest mean value for the measured collections, SDa/b = standard deviation of the lowest/highest mean value. MIN/MAX = lowest/highest value measured and only given when they exceed [Ava −2 × SDa] or [Avb + 2 × SDb] respectively. Q stands for 'quotient length/width' and is given as MINQ – QaQb – MAXQ, in which Qa/b = lowest/highest mean quotient for the measured specimens, MIN/MAXQ = minimum/maximum value over the quotients of all available measured basidiospores. Line drawings were made with the aid of a drawing tube at the original magnifications: 6000 × for basidiospores (Zeiss axioscop 2 microscope), 1000 × for individual elements and sections (Olympus CX31 microscope).

Phylogenetic analysis

DNA was extracted using the CTAB extraction protocol described in Nuytinck and Verbeken (2003). Protocols for PCR amplification follow Le et al. (2007a). Two nuclear markers that were previously shown to be informative within this subgenus (De Crop et al. 2017) were used: (1) the internal transcribed spacer region of ribosomal DNA (ITS), comprising the ITS1 and ITS2 spacer regions and the ribosomal gene 5.8S, using primers ITS-1F and ITS4 (Gardes and Bruns 1993; White et al. 1990) and (2) a part of the ribosomal large subunit 28S region (LSU), using primers LR0R and LR5 (Moncalvo et al. 2000).

PCR products were sequenced using an automated ABI 3730 XL capillary sequencer (Life Technology) at Macrogen. Forward and reverse reads were assembled into contigs and edited where needed with the SEQUENCHER v. 5.0 software (Gene Codes Corporation, Ann Arbor, MI, USA).

A dataset was constructed, containing sequences of these recent collections, together with sequences of L. subg. Pseudogymnocarpi extracted from the dataset of De Crop et al. (2017). Furthermore, sequences were compared to sequences in the Unite database using Blastn (Abarenkov et al. 2010). One environmental sequence was found within the same Species Hypothesis and was added to the dataset. The outgroup consisted of four species of L. subg. Lactifluus (Table 1).

Specimens and GenBank accession numbers of DNA sequences used in the molecular analyses. The arrangement of the subgenera and sections in the table follows their position in the concatenated phylogeny of the genus Lactifluus (Fig. 1).

Species Voucher collection (herbarium) Country ITS accession no. LSU accession no.
Genus Lactifluus
Lactifluus subg. Pseudogymnocarpi
Lactifluus sect. Pseudogymnocarpi
L. cf. longisporus AV 11-025 (GENT) Tanzania KR364054 KR364181
L. cf. pseudogymnocarpus AV 05-085 (GENT) Malawi KR364012 KR364139
L. cf. pumilus EDC 12-066 (GENT) Cameroon KR364067 KR364196
L. gymnocarpoides JD 885 (BR) Congo KR364074 KR364203
AV 05-184 (GENT) Malawi KR364024 KR364151
L. hygrophoroides AV 05-251 (GENT) North America HQ318285 HQ318208
L. longisporus AV 94-557 (Isotype, GENT) Burundi KR364118 KR364244
L. luteopus AV 94-463 (Isotype, GENT) Burundi KR364119 None
L. medusae EDC 12-152 (GENT) Cameroon KR364069 KR364198
L. pseudoluteopus FH 12-026 (GENT) Thailand KR364084 KR364214
L. rugatus EP 1212/7 (LGAM-AUA) Greece KR364104 KR364235
L. sudanicus AV 11-174 (Isotype, GENT) Togo HG426469 KR364186
Lactifluus sect. Xerampelini
L. bicapillus sp. nov. EDC 12-176 (GENT) Cameroon KR364070 KR364199
EDC 12-174 (GENT) Cameroon MH549201 MH549201
EDC 14-245 (GENT) Cameroon MH549204 MH549204
EDC 12-169 (GENT) Cameroon MH549200 MH549200
EDC 14-249 (Holotype, GENT) Cameroon MH549203 MH549203
EDC 14-284 (GENT) Cameroon KX499395 None
EDC 14-238 (GENT) Cameroon MH549202 MH549202
EDC 12-071 (GENT) Cameroon KX499396 KX622762
L6470/Gab40 (env. seq.) Gabon FR731875 None
L. cf. pseudovolemus ADK 2927 (GENT) Benin KR364113 KR364243
L. goossensiae AB 320 (GENT) Guinea KR364132 KR364252
L. kivuensis JR Z 310 (Holotype, GENT) Congo KR364027 KR364154
L. rubiginosus JD 959 (BR) Congo KR364081 KR364210
BB 3466 (Holotype, BR) Zambia KR364014 KR364250
L. persicinus EDC 12-001 (Holotype, GENT) Cameroon KR364061 KR364190
L. xerampelinus TS 1116 (Isotype, GENT) Tanzania KR364039 KR364166
Clade 8
L. sp. JN 2011-012 (GENT) Vietnam KR364045 KR364171
TENN 065929 (TENN) North America KR364102 KR364233
L. armeniacus EDC 14-501 (Isotype, GENT) Thailand KR364127 None
L. volemoides TS 0705 (Holotype, H) Tanzania KR364038 KR364165
Lactifluus sect. Aurantiifolii
L. aurantiifolius AV 94-063 (Isotype, GENT) Burundi KR364017 KR364144
Lactifluus sect. Rubroviolascentini
L. aff. rubroviolascens EDC 12-051 (GENT) Cameroon KR364066 KR364195
L. carmineus AV 99-099 (Holotype, GENT) Zimbabwe KR364131 KR364251
L. denigricans EDC 11-218 (GENT) Tanzania KR364051 KR364178
L. kigomaensis AV 11-006 (Holotype, GENT) Tanzania KR364052 KR364179
L. subkigomaensis EDC 11-159 (GENT) Tanzania KR364050 KR364177
Lactifluus sect. Polysphaerophori
L. pegleri PAM/Mart 12-091 (LIP) Martinique KP691416 KP691425
L. sp. RC/Guy 09-036 (LIP) French Guiana KJ786645 KJ786550
MR/Guy 13-145 French Guiana KJ786691 KJ786595
MCA 3937 (GENT) Guyana KR364109 KR364240
L. veraecrucis M 8025 (Holotype, ENCB) Mexico KR364112 KR364241
Lactifluus subg. Lactifluus
Lactifluus sect. Lactifluus
L. corrugis s.l. AV 05-392 (GENT) North America JQ753822 KR364143
L. versiformis AV-KD-KVP 09-045 (Holotype, GENT) India JN388967 JN389031
L. vitellinus KVP 08-024 (GENT) Thailand HQ318236 HQ318144
L. volemus KVP 11-002 (GENT) Belgium JQ753948 KR364175

Sequences were aligned using the online version of the multiple sequence alignment program MAFFT v. 7 (Katoh and Standley 2013), using the E-INS-I strategy. Trailing ends of the alignment were trimmed and sequences were manually edited when necessary in MEGA 6 (Tamura et al. 2013). The alignment can be acquired from the first author and TreeBASE (S22916, http://purl.org/phylo/treebase/phylows/study/TB2:S22916).

Sequence data were divided into the following partitions: partial 18S, ITS1, 5.8S, ITS2 and partial 28S. Maximum likelihood (ML) analyses were conducted with RAxML v. 8.0.24 (Stamatakis 2014), where a ML analysis was combined with the Rapid Bootstrapping algorithm with 1000 replicates under the GTRCAT option (Stamatakis et al. 2008). All analyses were performed on the CIPRES Science Gateway (Miller et al. 2010).

Results

Our molecular results show that the recently collected specimens form a well-supported monophyletic clade within Lactifluus subg. Pseudogymnocarpi, L. sect. Xerampelini (Fig. 1). The species is sister to a well-supported clade of all other species within this section, with L. xerampelinus (Karhula & Verbeken) Verbeken being its closest relative. Morphological and ecological data confirm that these collections are different from all other species in L. sect. Xerampelini, therefore the new species is described here as Lactifluus bicapillus sp. nov.

Figure 1. 

Overview Maximum Likelihood tree of Lactifluus subg. Pseudogymnocarpi, based on concatenated ITS and LSU sequence data. Sequences of the here described species Lactifluus bicapillus are written in bold. Maximum Likelihood bootstrap values > 70 are shown. Numbers of undescribed sections refer to De Crop et al. (2017).

Taxonomy

Lactifluus bicapillus Lescroart & De Crop

MycoBank No: 827400
Figs 2, 3, 4

Diagnosis

Lactifluus bicapillus differs from L. xerampelinus by its yellowish-orange to dark red cap, fertile lamella edge, a lampropalisade with two types of terminal elements as pileipellis type, and a distribution in the Guineo-Congolian rainforest.

Holotype

CAMEROON. East Region, Haut-Nyong division, Somalomo subdivision, Dja Biosphere Reserve, alt. ca 640 m, 3°21.83'N, 12°44.18'E, rainforest with Uapaca paludosa and U. guineensis, 14 May 2014, leg.: De Crop & Verbeken, EDC 14-249 (GENT!).

Basidiocarps medium-sized. Pileus 34–79 mm in diameter, firm, infundibuliform to deeply infundibuliform, planoconvex with central depression when younger; margin involute when juvenile, becoming inflexed up to reflexed when older; edge entire, sometimes eroded when older; surface felty to chamois leather-like, often slightly pruinose in the centre, often grooved, concentrically wrinkled, in young specimens completely velutinous and somewhat translucent; rubiginous (7D6–7) in centre, becoming paler and more orange towards the margin (6C5–6 to 5A5–6); young specimens dark reddish or burgundy in centre, to bright orange or yellow at the margin (8F6 to 7B6, to 6A5, 4AG); secondary velum absent. Stipe 16–39 × 6–12 mm, cylindrical to slightly tapering downwards, often laterally curved near the base, central to eccentric insertion to pileus, entire or bruised appearance, sometimes with white flocks near the base; surface smooth and felty, sometimes pruinose, yellowish orange (5AB5–6), becoming slightly paler and more yellow near the base and/or lamellae (5A4–5). Lamellae intervenose, transvenose, sparingly bifurcating; attachment adnate to decurrent with some lamellae forming a small tooth; juveniles not brittle, rather thin, older specimens brittle to very brittle, thick to very broad; edge entire and concolourous; distant, 3–5 + 6–9 L+l/cm, between 2 lamellae often 3 lamellulae, with regular short long-short pattern; creamy yellow (3A2) to yellowish orange (4A4). Context white, with a faint yellow tinge, colour not changing when cut, but in 1 collection (EDC 14-238) becoming brown when damaged, rather solid and full, smell sweet or not distinct, taste mild. Latex white, somewhat astringent, rather abundant, becomes less abundant and more watery with age, mild, colour rarely changing brownish when isolated. Chemical reactions unchanging with Fe2SO4; context faint blue after 5 sec. with guaiac.

Basidiospores [6.2]–7.3–7.9–[9.6](10.3) × [4.6]–5.5–5.9–[6.8] μm; ellipsoid, with Q = (1.22)1.31–1.39(1.51); ornamentation amyloid, composed of low ridges and warts, up to 0.2 μm high, forming an incomplete to complete reticulum; plage inamyloid or centrally amyloid. Basidia 43–62 × 8–12 μm, rather long, narrowly subclavate, 1-, 2- or 4-spored; content oleiferic. Sterile elements abundant, 19.5–40 × 3.5–5.5 μm, not emergent, cylindrical, septate with clamp-like bulges under the septum, with rounded apex. Pleurocystidia absent. Pleuropseudocystidia very scarce in mature specimens, abundant in young specimens, narrowly and irregular cylindrical to flexuose, 3.3–4.6 μm diam., not emerging, apex obtuse, oleiferic content. Lamellae-edge fertile, consisting of basidioles with some basidia. Marginal cells absent. Hymenophoral trama cellular, with sphaerocytes and abundant lactifers. Pileipellis a lampropalisade, up to 275 μm thick; terminal elements of two types, without transitional forms: the first type long and slender, thick-walled and often septate, with a wide base, up to 7 μm, and growing thinner towards the apex, down to 1–2 μm, length 52–92 μm, often narrowing rather abruptly, and twisted; the second type short and broad, also thick-walled and often septate, not specifically narrower towards the apex, often twisted, 20–44 × 5–7 μm; subpellis composed of mostly rounded cells. Stipitipellis similar to pileipellis but not as thick; terminal elements of the long type 52–75 × 5–7 μm; terminal elements of the short type 22–29 × 5–7 μm. Clamp-connections absent.

Figure 2. 

Basidiomata of Lactifluus bicapillus. a–c Basidiomata of Lactifluus bicapillus (EDC 12-176, EDC 12-174, holotype EDC 14-249 resp.) d Detail of lamellae (EDC 14-176), e) young specimen (EDC 12-169) f Detail of latex (EDC 12-169) g Detail of brown colour change of the latex (EDC 14-238) (photographs a–f by E. De Crop, g by A. Verbeken).

Figure 3. 

Microscopic features of Lactifluus bicapillus a Basidiocarps (from EDC 12-071, EDC 12-169, EDC 12-174, EDC 12-176, and EDC 14-249) b Basidia (from EDC 12-071, and EDC 14-249) c Sterile elements from the hymenium (from EDC 12-169) d Pleuropseudocystidia (from EDC 12-169) e Basidiospores (from EDC 14-249). Illustrations by E. De Crop, J. Lescroart and A. Verbeken. Scale bar: 10 μm.

Figure 4. 

Microscopic features of Lactifluus bicapillus (continued) a Terminal elements of the pileipellis (from EDC 12-071) b Terminal elements of the stipitipellis (from EDC 12-176) c Section through the pileipellis (from holotype EDC 14-249). Illustrations by E. De Crop and J. Lescroart. Scale bar: 10 μm.

Distribution

Known from Cameroon and Gabon.

Ecology

Guineo-Congolian rainforest, scattered on forest floor under Gilbertiodendron dewevrei, Uapaca guineensis, U. acuminata, and U. paludosa.

Etymology

A combination of ‘bi’ and ‘capillus’, referring to the two types of terminal elements in the pileipellis and stipitipellis.

Conservation status

Unknown.

Specimens examined

Cameroon. East Region, Haut-Nyong division, Somalomo subdivision, Koulou village, alt. ca 650 m, 3°23.61'N, 12°44.50'E, rainforest, Gilbertiodendron dewevrei, Uapaca guineensis, U. acuminata, 15 May 2012, De Crop, EDC 12-071 (GENT); East Region, Haut-Nyong division, Lomié subdivision, Bosquet village, alt. ca 610 m, 3°07.82'N, 13°53.36'E, rainforest with many Uapaca trees, on a riverbank, Uapaca guineensis, 24 May 2012, De Crop, EDC 12-169 (GENT); Ibidem, Gilbertiodendron dewevrei, De Crop, EDC 12-174 (GENT); Ibidem, Uapaca guineensis, EDC 12-176 (GENT); East Region, Haut-Nyong division, Somalomo subdivision, Dja Biosphere Reserve, alt. ca 650 m, 3°21.90'N, 12°44.15'E, rainforest, Uapaca paludosa, U. guineensis, 14 May 2014, De Crop & Verbeken, EDC 14-238 (GENT); Ibidem, alt. ca 640 m, 3°21.83'N, 12°44.18'E, De Crop & Verbeken, EDC 14-249 (GENT); Ibidem, alt. ca 650 m, 3°19.87'N, 12°45.42'E, rainforest, near the river, Uapaca sp., 17/05/2014, De Crop & Verbeken, EDC 14-284 (GENT).

Discussion

Lactifluus bicapillus is recognized in the field by its yellowish-orange to dark-red cap, a concolourous or somewhat paler stipe, yellow lamellae, and unchanging white latex. L. bicapillus is placed in L. subg. Pseudogymnocarpi, L. sect. Xerampelini. Species in this section are characterized by yellowish-orange to reddish-brown caps, a palisade-like structure as pileipellis, the absence of true pleurocystidia, and generally low ornamented basidiospores (not higher than 0.2 μm) ranging from verrucose to almost completely reticulate (De Crop et al. 2017). Lactifluus bicapillus perfectly concurs with these morphological characteristics, providing additional support for its placement in L. sect. Xerampelini.

Lactifluus sect. Xerampelini is exclusively known from Africa and contains six described species (Fig. 5): L. goossensiae (Beeli) Verbeken, L. kivuensis (Verbeken) Verbeken, L. persicinus Delgat & De Crop, L. pseudovolemus (R. Heim) Verbeken, L. rubiginosus (Verbeken) Verbeken, and L. xerampelinus (Verbeken and Walleyn 2010; Delgat et al. 2017).

Figure 5. 

Basidiomata of described species of Lactifluus sect. Xerampelini a L. xerampelinus (EDC 11-113) b L. kivuensis (JR Z 233) c L. cf. pseudovolemus (ADK 2968) d L. rubiginosus (EDC 11-120) e L. persicinus (EDC 12-001, holotypus) f L. bicapillus (EDC 14-249, holotypus) (photographs a, d–f by E. De Crop, b by J. Rammeloo and c by A. De Kesel).

Lactifluus bicapillus differs in ecology from all but one species of L. sect. Xerampelini. Species from this section occur in woodlands, gallery forests and rainforests (Verbeken and Walleyn 2010). Lactifluus xerampelinus and L. rubiginosus are found in miombo woodland in East Africa, while L. goossensiae is known from both Sudanian woodland and Central African gallery forests. Lactifluus persicinus and L. pseudovolemus occur in West African gallery forests. Both L. kivuensis and L. bicapillus are found in the Guineo-Congolian rainforest, associated with Gilbertiodendron dewevrei and Uapaca species.

Macroscopically, L. bicapillus differs from the other species of this section by a combination of bright cap colours, which vary from dark red to bright orange near the edge, cream white lamellae and pale yellow-orange stipe colours in adult basidiocarps (Fig. 5).

All species from L. sect. Xerampelini have ellipsoid to elongate basidiospores, with amyloid ornamentation composed of very low warts and ridges (up to 0.2 µm high) that are isolated, aligned or forming an incomplete reticulum. All seven species have long and slender basidia, mostly cylindrical and 4-spored. However, 1- and 2-spored basidia are present in L. bicapillus, L. persicinus, and L. pseudovolemus. True cystidia are absent in all species. Pleuropseudocystidia are scarce in L. bicapillus, L. persicinus, and L. kivuensis, abundant in the other species. These pleuropseudocystidia are occasionally emergent in all species; however, emergent pleuropseudocystidia were not observed in L. bicapillus. Lactifluus persicinus and L. bicapillus have a fertile lamellar edge, whilst the others have a sterile lamellar edge (or unknown in L. pseudovolemus and L. goossensiae).

All species of this section have palisade-like structures as pileipellis. Lactifluus bicapillus, L. persicinus, and L. goossensiae have a lampropalisade with thick-walled terminal elements. Lactifluus pseudovolemus has a palisade in which the elements of the pileipellis are slightly thickened. Lactifluus kivuensis, L. xerampelinus, and L. rubiginosus have a palisade to trichopalisade, with only thin-walled elements of the pileipellis. Only Lactifluus bicapillus, L. persicinus, and L. goossensiae have terminal elements that are narrow near the apex. Furthermore, L. bicapillus is the only species within this section with two types of terminal elements in the pilei- and stipitipellis.

With the finding of Lactifluus bicapillus, L. sect. Xerampelini now contains seven described species, all from sub-Saharan Africa. Together with the recently described L. persicinus (Delgat et al. 2017), L. bicapillus was found during two sampling expeditions in Cameroon. Even though those expeditions only covered a small area of the Guineo-Congolian rainforest and gallery forests, we collected at least five species new to science (De Crop et al. 2017). This highlights the large Lactifluus diversity in Africa, with many areas still unexplored and probably many new species still to be found.

Acknowledgements

The first author is supported by the “Special Research Fund Ghent University” (BOF, grants B/13485/01 and BOF-PDO-2017-001201). The 2012 survey in Cameroon was financially supported by the Faculty Committee Scientific Research (FCWO) of Ghent University. The 2014 survey in Cameroon was financially supported by the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO, grant V416214N) and by the King Leopold III Fund for Nature Exploration and Conservation. We express our gratitude to all who helped during fieldwork, especially to the conservators and Ecogards in post in the Dja Biosphere Reserve (from 2012 to 2014) and Mr Tchana Tchonkui Merlin. We would like to thank Viki Vandomme for conducting lab work. We thank André De Kesel and Jan Rammeloo for providing pictures of Lactifluus species. We thank the reviewers and the editor for their constructive suggestions and detailed comments on the manuscript.

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