Send to

Choose Destination
Sci Rep. 2016 Jan 29;6:19829. doi: 10.1038/srep19829.

White-nose syndrome without borders: Pseudogymnoascus destructans infection tolerated in Europe and Palearctic Asia but not in North America.

Author information

Institute of Vertebrate Biology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Květná 8, 603 65 Brno, Czech Republic.
Department of Botany and Zoology, Masaryk University, Kotlářská 2, 611 37 Brno, Czech Republic.
Department of Ecology and Diseases of Game, Fish and Bees, University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences Brno, Palackeho 1/3, 612 42 Brno, Czech Republic.
Laboratory of Fungal Genetics and Metabolism, Institute of Microbiology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Vídeňská 1083, 142 20 Prague 4, Czech Republic.
Department of Botany, Faculty of Science, Charles University in Prague, Benátská 2, 128 01 Prague, Czech Republic.
Ural State Pedagogical University, Kosmonavtov str. 26, 620017 Yekaterinburg, Russia.
Centre for Cartography of Fauna and Flora, Antoličičeva 1, SI-2204 Miklavž na Dravskem polju, Slovenia.
Latvian State Forest Research Institute "Silava", 111 Rigas str., LV-2169 Salaspils, Latvia.
Institute of Molecular Physiology and Genetics, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Vlárska 5, 83334 Bratislava, Slovakia.
Institute of Biostatistics and Analysis, Masaryk University, Kamenice 3, 625 00 Brno, Czech Republic.


A striking feature of white-nose syndrome, a fungal infection of hibernating bats, is the difference in infection outcome between North America and Europe. Here we show high WNS prevalence both in Europe and on the West Siberian Plain in Asia. Palearctic bat communities tolerate similar fungal loads of Pseudogymnoascus destructans infection as their Nearctic counterparts and histopathology indicates equal focal skin tissue invasiveness pathognomonic for WNS lesions. Fungal load positively correlates with disease intensity and it reaches highest values at intermediate latitudes. Prevalence and fungal load dynamics in Palearctic bats remained persistent and high between 2012 and 2014. Dominant haplotypes of five genes are widespread in North America, Europe and Asia, expanding the source region of white-nose syndrome to non-European hibernacula. Our data provides evidence for both endemicity and tolerance to this persistent virulent fungus in the Palearctic, suggesting that host-pathogen interaction equilibrium has been established.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center