Biological Classification


  • Fungi are achlorophyllous heterotrophs which form spores that contain chitin in their cell wall.
  • Glycogen is the reserve food material
  • Study of Fungus is Mycology
  • The body of Fungus possesses tabular filaments called as Hyphae, which form filaments known as Mycelium.
  • Hyphae can be septate (or) Aseptate. Aseptate mycelium is called coenocytic mycelium.
  • Septa never complete. In Basidiomycetes, it produces a barrel-shaped structure called dolipore septum.
  • Aseptate fungi are placed under phycomycoata, which classifies into Oomycetes and Zygomycetes.
  • Oomycetes sexually reproduce by gametangial contact and the product is oospore.
    Eg. Phytophthora infestans – late blight of potato. Albugo candida – white rust
  • Zygomycetes undergo gametangial copulation (or) conjugation and hence they are called conjugation fungi and the product is zygospore. Eg. Rhizopus stolonifer - black bread mould and Mucor - Dung mould (Both are active in alcohol fermentation, citric acid and lactic acid production).
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  • Septate fungi (referred to higher fungi) is of 2 types. (i) Ascomycetes (ii) Basidiomycetes.
  • Ascomycetes (sac fungi) includes yeast (unicellular) which forms Pseudomycelium.
  • Ascomycetes exist in dikaryotic phase as karyogamy is delayed after plasmogamy.
    Eg. Yeast: Saccharomyces cerevisiae used in Brewing and Baking industry. Nematospora affects cotton, tomato.
  • Aspergillus (weed of laboratory); Penicillium – Penicillin, griseofulvin; Neurospora – Drosophila of plant kingdom; Morels – Edible; and Truffles
  • Basidiomycetes (club fungi) are the best decomposers of wood and its mycelia are of 2 types (i) Primary (ii) Secondary where the primary is monokaryotic and the secondary is dikaryotic.
  • Basidiomycetes possess clamp connections.
    Eg. Agaricus Campestris – edible; Puccinia glumarum – yellow rust of wheat; Puccinia graminis tritici – black rust of wheat
  • As the sexual reproduction of Deuteromycetes is unknown, it is commonly known as Fungi imperfectii (or) Imperfect fungus.
  • Mycelium is usually septate
    Eg. Colletotrichum falcatum – Red rot of sugarcane; Helminthosporium – Sesame (or) Brown leaf spot of rice; Alternaria Solani – Early blight of potato and tomato; Fusarium moniliforme – Gibberellins production; Trichoderma – Cyclosporin ‘A’.

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