Polyporales are extensively studied wood-decaying fungi with applications in white and green biotechnologies and in medicinal chemistry. We developed an open-access, user-friendly, bioinformatics tool named FunGene-DB (http://www.fungene-db.org). The goal was to facilitate the molecular authentication of Polyporales strains and fruit-bodies, otherwise subjected to morphological studies. This tool includes a curated database that contains ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 rDNA genes screened through a semi-automated pipeline from the International Nucleotide Sequence Database (INSD), and the similarity search BLASTn program. Today, the web-accessible database compiles 2379 accepted sequences, among which 386 were selected as reference sequences (most often fully identified ITS sequences for which a voucher, strain or specimen, has been deposited in a public-access collection). The restriction of the database to one reference sequence per species (or per clade for species complex) allowed most often unequivocal analysis. We conclude that FunGene-DB is a promising tool for molecular authentication of Polyporales. It should be especially useful for scientists who are not expert mycologists but who need to check the identity of strains (e.g. for culture collections, for applied microbiology). © 2012 Elsevier B.V.
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