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Image #   210885D
Name:   Corn smut fungus (Ustilago maydis)
Copyright:   Copyright 2010 Dennis Kunkel Microscopy, Inc.
Description:   Caption: Ustilago maydis is a pathogenic fungus that causes corn (maize) smut disease. Shown here is the budding yeast stage (laboratory grown) and its mucilaginous matrix. When grown in the lab on very simple media, Ustilago maydis behaves like baker's yeast, forming single cells, commonly named sporidia. These yeast cells multiply by budding off daughter cells (shown here). When two compatible sporidia meet on the surface of the plant, they switch to a different mode (phase) of growth. First, they send out conjugation tubes to find each other, after which they fuse and make a hypha to enter the maize plant. Hyphae growing in the plant are dikaryotic and this phase of requires infection of the plant in order to grow and differentiate, thus it cannot be maintained in the laboratory. The fungus damages the corn plants and reduces yields by forming galls on the ears, stalks and leaves. When the galls mature (dikaryotic phase) their interior turns into a mass of powdery, dark, olive-brown spores. The grey membrane of the gall then ruptures releasing the millions of teliospores. These spores overwinter in the soil before germinating the next year on a new corn crop. Corn smut occurs wherever corn is grown in the world.
Magnification*: x1,335
Type: SEM
    *(Magnifications are based on a 35mm slide image of 24mm in the narrow dimension.)
Keywords:   210885D 10.01.10 Ustilago Ustilago maydis SEM bud scar bud scars corn smut corn smut fungi corn smut fungus corn smut yeast corn smut yeasts fungi and slime molds yeast yeast bud yeast bud scar yeast bud scars yeast buds yeasts agricultural disease agricultural pest corn disease crop damage maize disease maize smut maize smut disease corn plant corn plants diseased corn plant diseased corn plants ear of corn teosinte Euchlena mexicana huitlacoche cuitlacoche sporidia dikaryotic phase dikaryotic phases dikaryotic stage dikaryotic stages teliospore teliospores diploid teleospore diploid teleospores chlorosis corn plant chlorosis plant chlorosis corn ear gall corn ear galls corn plant disease corn plant diseases corn plant gall corn plant galls corn plant infection corn plant infections plant disease plant diseases mucilaginous mucilaginous matrix fungi hypha fungi hyphae fungus hypha fungus hyphae hypha hyphae yeast hypha yeast hyphae corn gall corn gall formation corn galls gall formation fungus spore fungus spores fungal fungal spore fungal spores fungi spore fungi spores fungus yeast fungus yeasts fungal sporidia fungi sporidia fungi yeast fungi yeasts fungus sporidia corn fungal disease corn fungus disease corn smut disease corn smut gall corn smut galls maize fungal disease maize fungi maize fungus maize fungus disease maize gall maize galls smut disease corn crop damage fungal disease mycelia mycelium plant fungal disease plant fungus disease

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