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Paramyrothecium indicum

18th January, 2024 Environment

Paramyrothecium indicum

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  • Scientists have discovered a new species of fungus in Kerala named as ‘Paramyrothecium indicum’.


  • Named after India, ‘Paramyrothecium indicum’ (Ascomycota, Stachybotryaceae), is a new species of phytopathogenic fungus.
  • It exists as a parasite on plants and is associated with emerging leaf spots on the wild hibiscus plans near Peechi-Vazhani Wildlife Sanctuary in Thrissur district of Kerala.
  • Phytopathogen fungi are responsible for “serious plant diseases which might negatively affect crop productivity”.
  • Most of the Paramyrothecium are phytopathogens, a parasite surviving on a plant host.

Importance of Paramyrothecium indicum

  • The scientists have pointed out that the Western Ghats region of Kerala is renowned for its abundant fungal diversity, including numerous species endemic to the specific area.
  • The climatic conditions, rainfall, and phanerogamic vegetation are congenial for the growth and development of different kinds of pathogenic and non-pathogenic fungi
  • This finding underscores the importance of ongoing exploration and research into the diverse flora, fauna, and fungi in the Western Ghats.
  • Paramyrothecium leaf spots are a type of fungal disease that can affect a variety of plants. To control and manage these leaf spot diseases, they said, surveillance and early detection of causal agents is essential.
  • The disease can be prevented by pruning and removing infected leaves to reduce the source of infection.
  • Because this infects all plant leaves within a short time once climatic conditions are favourable.
  • Some biological preventive solutions are available in the market that can be used for the control of this disease.
  • In severe cases, fungicides can be very effective for the control of Paramyrothecium leaf spots.
  • The scientists have also observed that “some species of Paramyrothecium produce secondary metabolites with bio-herbicidal potentials” and, therefore, may find application in controlling weeds. However, this characteristic requires further exploration.


Fungi, a distinct biological kingdom, are crucial for ecosystems and human activities. Understanding their roles is vital for biodiversity comprehension.


  • Belong to a separate kingdom: Ascomycota, Basidiomycota, Zygomycota.
  • Include yeasts, mushrooms, and molds.

Ecological Roles:

  • Decomposers: Recycle nutrients by breaking down organic matter.
  • Mycorrhizae: Form symbiotic relationships aiding plant nutrient absorption.
  • Pathogens: Cause diseases in plants, animals, and humans.

Economic Importance:

  • Food Production: Essential in fermentation for bread, beer, and wine.
  • Medicine: Source of antibiotics like penicillin.
  • Bioremediation: Assist in environmental pollutant cleanup.

Disease and Health:

  • Plant Diseases: Impact agriculture by causing various plant diseases.
  • Human Diseases: Fungal infections affect individuals with compromised immune systems.

Biodiversity Hotspots:

  • Abundant in biodiversity hotspots like the Western Ghats.
  • Recent discoveries, like "Paramyrothecium indicum" in Kerala, highlight ongoing exploration.



Q. What is "Paramyrothecium indicum," recently discovered in Kerala?

a) It is a newly identified species of amphibian in Kerala.

b) It is a novel genus of flowering plants endemic to the Western Ghats.

c) It is a phytopathogenic fungus associated with leaf spots on wild hibiscus plants.

d) It is a microorganism with potential bio-herbicidal properties found in the Western Ghats.

Correct Answer: c) It is a phytopathogenic fungus associated with leaf spots on wild hibiscus plants.