Geographic locality greatly influences fungal endophyte communities in Cephalotaxus harringtonia.
Although endophytes of conifers have been extensively studied, few data are available on Cephalotaxaceae. We examined foliar and stem endophytes of Cephalotaxus harringtonia, within its natural range in Japan and outside its natural range in France to study the effect of geography on endophyte community composition. In Japan, rapidly growing endophytes were dominant and may have masked the real diversity, in comparison to France where most endophytes were growing slowly. Analyses of ITS rDNA revealed 104 different Blast Groups among 554 isolates. Almost no overlap between endophyte assemblages of C. harringtonia from the two countries was observed. It seems that Japanese C. harringtonia trees, which should be well adapted to their native site, would host a specific, endemic endophyte community, while trees that have been introduced recently to a foreign site, in France, should have captured existing cosmopolitan and more generalist taxa. In Japan the majority of xylariaceous taxa, which dominated the communities, were unknown and, although closely related to Asian taxa, may be new to science. Dothideomycetes were more prevalent in France. Locally, urban environment, particularly in Japan, may have introduced some perturbations in the native endophyte community of C. harringtonia, with an abundance of generalist fungi such as Nigrospora and Colletotrichum.