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Characterization of Schinopsis Haenkeana wood Decayed by Phellinus Chaquensis (Basidiomycota, Hymenochaetales)

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Schinopsis haenkeana is a native tree to the Chaco Serrano Forests in Argentina. The white-rot fungus Phellinus chaquensis degrades its wood, causing a whiterot type of decay. The objective of this study was to investigate the structural alterations caused by P. chaquensis in S. hankeana decayed naturally and in vitro. Sound living branches with decay and basidiocarps of P. chaquensis were sampled from the field and in vitro decay tests were performed according to the ASTM D-2017-81 standard method. Naturally decayed branches exhibited an innermost discolored zone with white-rot decay and an outer yellowish-white portion of sound sapwood. Using LM and SEM, degraded tissue displayed diagnostic characters of selective delignification and simultaneous decay. Findings indicate that P. chaquensis causes a mottled pattern of decay (selective delignification plus simultaneous decay) in S. haenkeana wood. Other features such as accumulation of extractives, profuse deposition of crystals and tyloses, typical ofSchinopsis spp. heartwood, were additionally observed. In laboratory degraded material, signs of selective delignification and incipient stages of simultaneous decay were noticeable only microscopically. Chemical analysis revealed an oxidative alteration of aromatic moieties in naturally decayed samples which might be related to the accumulation of phenols as a response to fungal attack when compared to sound samples. Naturally degraded sapwood exhibits anatomical and chemical modifications that indicate the development of discolored wood derived from the host-pathogen interaction.


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