Reproduction in Fungi

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Asexual reproduction

Asexual reproduction produced new organisms are genetically identical to the parent. By spores, fungi formed spores and released to create new fungi, by budding, fungus grows a new part of its body and breaks off and this broken part becomes new organism and by fragmentation, a part or piece of the mycelium of the fungus splits off and fragment produce a new colony of fungi.

Image showing mode of asexual reproduction; budding and fragmentation.

Image Showing Mode of Asexual Reproduction in Fungi.

Image showing mode of asexual reproduction; budding and fragmentation.

Sexual reproduction

In sexual reproduction, by conjugation two neighboring hyphae to produce a zygospore which after a period of rest produces a sporangium. When mature, the sporangium bursts to release spores which germinate on meeting favourable conditions and produce a new mycelium.

Image showing sexual reproduction in rhizopus.

Image Showing Sexual Reproduction in Rhizopus.

Image showing sexual reproduction in rhizopus.

Economic Importance of Fungi

Harmful roles of Fungi

  • Food spoilage caused by fungi like Mucor and yeast.

  • Different types of fungi which caused plant disease by species of Nematospora; they attack tomatoes, cotton and bean plants.

  • Several plants disease like causal organisms are stem rust of wheat (Puccinia graminis), Early blight of potato (Alternaria solani), Late blight of potato (Phytophthora infestans), White rust of crucifer (Albugo candida) and some fungi like Cryptococcus neoformans cause human disease like meningitis and brain tumor.

  • In human, skin diseases like ringworm and athlete’s foot are caused by fungi. Some ear infections are also caused by fungi.

Beneficial roles of Fungi

  • Fungi used as food (Mushrooms and Morels)

  • Used in laboratory; baking yeast, alcoholic beverages (wine, whiskey, beer, rum) prepared by fermentation of sugar solution, used in production of enzyme (amylase) and used in production of several antibiotics and other useful medicine like penicillin and streptomycin.

  • Used in commercial production of different organic products (citric acid, lactic and oxalic acid).

  • Some fungi are used to produce hormone like Gibberellin.