Asexual Sporulation in the Chytridiomycota

  • In unicellular species (see diagram below) the whole somatic cell becomes isolated from its rhizoids and is converted into a ZOOSPORANGIUM.
  • The nucleus undergoes several MITOTIC DIVISIONS - resulting in a MULTINUCLEATE CELL.
  • CLEAVAGE OF THE PROTOPLASM around individual nuclei is followed by each portion of nucleate protoplasm developing a SINGLE FLAGELLUM - N.B. some Chytridiomycota found in the rumen of animals possess several flagella.
  • Once mature, the zoospores are released from the zoosporangium - after a period of swimming to locate a fresh substrate, each will eventually lose its flagellum, form a wall and develop into the somatic (normal vegetative) form of the species.
  • In those species which exist as PRIMITIVELY BRANCHED CHAINS OF CELLS only cells near the ends of branches develop into zoosporangia.
Diagram illustrating asexual sporulation in Chytridiomycota.


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