Ophiocordyceps camponoti-rufipedis strain map16 (a species within the Ophiocordyceps unilateralis complex) was isolated from a Camponotus rufipes worker ant collected in the Atlantic rain forest of Brazil. Fungi of this species complex are entomopathogenic Ascomycetes infecting and manipulating the behavior of Carpenter ants. These species reside within the Order Hypocreales and Family Ophiocordycipitaceae.
Figure. An ant that was killed by O. camponoti-rufipedis. A fruiting structure emerges from the ant’s head, producing sexual spores.
Ant-infecting Ophiocordyceps genomes reveal a high diversity of potential behavioral manipulation genes and a possible major role for enterotoxins.de Bekker C, Ohm RA, Evans HC, Brachmann A, Hughes DPSci Rep. 2017 Oct; 7(1): 12508. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-12863-w