Fungi 4 - Parasitic fungi Parasitic fungi are the principal disease-causing organisms in plants. Fungal attacks can result in devastating agricultural losses. Phytophthora infestans is not strictly a fungus although it was classified as a fungus for many years. It is, in fact, a colourless, filamentous alga and its walls contain some cellulose, unlike the true fungi. It is described here because its parasitic life style closely resembles that of the pathogenic fungi which infest plants and also because it causes serious plant diseases such as tomato blight and the potato blight which caused the devastating Irish potato famine in 1845. The hyphae of this parasite spread internally through the leaves. Short branches from the hyphae penetrate the cell walls, with the aid of enzymes, and absorb nutriment from the cell contents. The cells are eventually killed and then the leaves and finally the whole shoot die. Before this happens, branching hyphae grow out of the stomata and produce sporangia at their
This is the end of the preview. Sign up
access the rest of the document.
This note was uploaded on 11/29/2011 for the course BIO 218 taught by Professor Young during the Fall '11 term at BYU.