Chytrid fungi and global amphibian declines

  title={Chytrid fungi and global amphibian declines},
  author={Matthew C. Fisher and Trenton W. J. Garner},
  journal={Nature Reviews Microbiology},
  • M. Fisher, T. Garner
  • Published 25 February 2020
  • Environmental Science
  • Nature Reviews Microbiology
Discovering that chytrid fungi cause chytridiomycosis in amphibians represented a paradigm shift in our understanding of how emerging infectious diseases contribute to global patterns of biodiversity loss. In this Review we describe how the use of multidisciplinary biological approaches has been essential to pinpointing the origins of amphibian-parasitizing chytrid fungi, including Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis and Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans , as well as to timing their emergence… 
Chytridiomycosis in Asian Amphibians, a Global Resource for Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) Research
It is emphasized that chytridiomycosis in Asia is an important wildlife disease and it needs focussed research, as it is a dynamic front of pathogen diversity and virulence.
Panzootic chytrid fungus exploits diverse amphibian host environments through plastic infection strategies
It is argued that plastic gene expression can drive variation in Bd lifecycles with different mode and tempo of development, such that gene expression plasticity constitutes one of the evolutionary keys leading to the success of this panzootic multi-host pathogen.
Microplastics increase susceptibility of amphibian larvae to the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis
It is found that MP ingestion increases the burden of infection by Bd in a dose-dependent manner, however, MPs accumulated to a greater extent in amphibians that were not exposed to Bd, likely due to BD-damaged tadpole mouthparts interfering with MP ingestion.
Preparing for invasion: Assessing risk of infection by chytrid fungi in southeastern plethodontid salamanders.
Bsal exhibited its highest value of pathogenic potential in a species that is already declining (Desmognathus auriculatus), and this index provides additional information beyond the standard measures of disease prevalence, intensity, and mortality, because it leveraged these disease parameters within each categorical group.
Living with the pathogenic chytrid fungus: Exploring mechanisms of coexistence in the harlequin toad Atelopus cruciger
Simulations showed that variations in the recruitment of adults and the persistence of zoospores in the environment were more likely to drive shifts between extinction and coexistence than changes in the vulnerability of toads to infection with Bd.
Immunological Aspects of Chytridiomycosis
An integrated synthesis of amphibian post-metamorphic immunological responses and the corresponding outcomes of infection with Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis is presented, focusing on recent developments within the field and highlighting future directions.
Distribution and Genetic Diversity of the Amphibian Chytrid in Japan
Organizing the data obtained so far in Japan and distributing the status of frog chytrid fungus in Japan to the world will provide useful insight for future risk management of this pathogen.
Climatic niche evolution of infectious diseases driving amphibian declines
Climate change and infectious diseases continue to drive global amphibian population declines, contributing to one of the greatest vertebrate extinctions of the Anthropocene. Currently around 16%
Tracking, Synthesizing, and Sharing Global Batrachochytrium Data at
The Amphibian Disease Portal addresses several critical community needs while also helping to build basic biological knowledge of chytridiomycosis, and introduces an advanced central online repository to archive, aggregate, and share Bd and Bsal data collected from around the world.
Diversity, multifaceted evolution, and facultative saprotrophism in the European Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans epidemic
This work generates de novo genomic assemblies for six outbreaks of the emerging pathogen Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans and reveals the European epidemic currently damaging amphibian populations to comprise multiple, highly divergent lineages demonstrating isolate-specific adaptations and metabolic capacities.


Overview of chytrid emergence and impacts on amphibians
  • K. Lips
  • Environmental Science
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2016
Robust estimates of population numbers are needed to identify species at risk, prioritize taxa for conservation actions, design management strategies for managing populations and species, and to develop effective measures to reduce impacts of chytrids on amphibians.
Amphibian fungal panzootic causes catastrophic and ongoing loss of biodiversity
A global, quantitative assessment of the amphibian chytridiomycosis panzootic demonstrates its role in the decline of at least 501 amphibian species over the past half-century and represents the greatest recorded loss of biodiversity attributable to a disease.
Recent Asian origin of chytrid fungi causing global amphibian declines
Panzootic chytrid fungus out of Asia Species in the fungal genus Batrachochytrium are responsible for severe declines in the populations of amphibians globally. The sources of these pathogens have
Enzootic and epizootic dynamics of the chytrid fungal pathogen of amphibians
Results suggest that host persistence versus extinction does not require differences in host susceptibility, pathogen virulence, or environmental conditions, and may be just epidemic and endemic population dynamics of the same host–pathogen system.
Mitigating amphibian chytridiomycoses in nature
This article focuses on discussing options for mitigating the threats once disease emergence has occurred in wild amphibian populations, and assesses disease mitigation options critically and embeds them within more comprehensive strategies for the conservation of amphibians, communities and ecosystems.
Amphibian chytrid fungus in Africa – realigning hypotheses and the research paradigm
The amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), responsible for numerous amphibian declines and extinctions, was previously thought to originate from the African continent. This was
Complex history of the amphibian-killing chytrid fungus revealed with genome resequencing data
Evidence for selection acting on the Bd genome is reported, supporting the hypothesis that protease genes are important in evolutionary transitions in this group, and it is found that even the most recently evolved Bd clade contained more genetic variation than previously reported.
Chytrid fungus infection in zebrafish demonstrates that the pathogen can parasitize non-amphibian vertebrate hosts
It is shown that infection phenotypes (fin erosion, cell apoptosis and muscle degeneration) are direct symptoms of infection and successful infection is dependent on disrupting the zebrafish microbiome, highlighting that, as is widely found in amphibians, commensal bacteria confer protection against this pathogen.
Historical amphibian declines and extinctions in Brazil linked to chytridiomycosis
The findings indicate that Brazil is post epizootic for chytridiomycosis and provide another piece to the puzzle to explain the origin of Bd globally.
Assessing the Threat of Amphibian Chytrid Fungus in the Albertine Rift: Past, Present and Future
A comprehensive effort to assess the distribution and threat of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in one of the Earth’s most important biodiversity hotspots, the Albertine Rift in central Africa, predicts that optimal habitat suitability of Bd will decrease causing a major range contraction of the fungus by 2080.