The Naming of Chemical Variants in Penicillium and Aspergillus

  • John I. Pitt
  • David L. Hawksworth
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 102)


It is felt inappropriate to name variants of Penicillium and Aspergillus species distinguished solely by secondary metabolite profiles within the formal systematics of the genera while their taxonomic significance is uncertain. In cases where reference to such variants is necessary, it is proposed that the tested and widely used “Chemotype” terminology now used to communicate such variation in the lichen-forming fungi also be adopted in Penicillium and Aspergillus. Each chemotype is given a Roman numeral, Chemotype I including the metabolite profile of the type of the species name. To avoid ambiguity, the differentiating compounds can be mentioned in parenthesis, e.g. “Chemotype II (citrinin)”. The Chemotype terminology avoids the necessity of creating new Latinized names and asigning ranks to them while the situation is unclear, and does not preclude the use of formal scientific names in the rank of ‘species, ’ variety’ or ‘form’ when the taxonomic importance of such variation has been assessed.


Metabolite Profile Aspergillus Species Roman Numeral Taxonomic Significance Nomenclatural Type 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • John I. Pitt
    • 1
    • 2
  • David L. Hawksworth
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Food ResearchCSIRONorth RydeAustralia
  2. 2.Commonwealth Mycological InstituteKew, SurreyUK

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