<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >
Parts a, b, c, and d show fungal parasites on grapefruit, grapes, a zinnia, and a sheaf of barley, respectively.
Some fungal pathogens include (a) green mold on grapefruit, (b) fungus on grapes, (c) powdery mildew on a zinnia, and (d) stem rust on a sheaf of barley. Notice the brownish color of the fungus in (b) Botrytis cinerea , also referred to as the “noble rot,” which grows on grapes and other fruit. Controlled infection of grapes by Botrytis is used to produce strong and much-prized dessert wines. (credit a: modification of work by Scott Bauer, USDA ARS; credit b: modification of work by Stephen Ausmus, USDA ARS; credit c: modification of work by David Marshall, USDA ARS; credit d: modification of work by Joseph Smilanick, USDA ARS)

Aflatoxins are toxic and carcinogenic compounds released by fungi of the genus Aspergillus . Periodically, harvests of nuts and grains are tainted by aflatoxins, leading to massive recall of produce, sometimes ruining producers, and causing food shortages in developing countries.

Animal and human parasites and pathogens

Fungi can affect animals, including humans, in several ways. Fungi attack animals directly by colonizing and destroying tissues. Humans and other animals can be poisoned by eating toxic mushrooms or foods contaminated by fungi. In addition, individuals who display hypersensitivity to molds and spores develop strong and dangerous allergic reactions. Fungal infections are generally very difficult to treat because, unlike bacteria, fungi are eukaryotes. Antibiotics only target prokaryotic cells, whereas compounds that kill fungi also adversely affect the eukaryotic animal host.

Many fungal infections ( mycoses ) are superficial and termed cutaneous (meaning “skin”) mycoses. They are usually visible on the skin of the animal. Fungi that cause the superficial mycoses of the epidermis, hair, and nails rarely spread to the underlying tissue ( [link] ). These fungi are often misnamed “dermatophytes” from the Greek dermis skin and phyte plant, but they are not plants. Dermatophytes are also called “ringworms” because of the red ring that they cause on skin (although the ring is caused by fungi, not a worm). These fungi secrete extracellular enzymes that break down keratin (a protein found in hair, skin, and nails), causing a number of conditions such as athlete’s foot, jock itch, and other cutaneous fungal infections. These conditions are usually treated with over-the-counter topical creams and powders, and are easily cleared. More persistent, superficial mycoses may require prescription oral medications.

Part a is a photo of a red, ring-shaped skin lesion. Part b is a light micrograph of long, thread-like mycelia and small, oval sporangia. Part c is a chest X-ray of a person with a fungal infection. There are diffuse, scattered light areas where the infiltration of fluid has replaced the air in the microscopic air sacs.
(a) Ringworm presents as a red ring on the skin. (b) Trichophyton violaceum is a fungus that causes superficial mycoses on the scalp. (c) Histoplasma capsulatum , seen in this X-ray as speckling of light areas in the lung, is a species of Ascomycota that infects airways and causes symptoms similar to the flu. (credit a, b: modification of work by Dr. Lucille K. Georg, CDC; credit c: modification of work by M Renz, CDC; scale-bar data from Matt Russell)

Systemic mycoses spread to internal organs, most commonly entering the body through the respiratory system. For example, coccidioidomycosis (valley fever) is commonly found in the southwestern United States, where the fungus resides in the dust. Once inhaled, the spores develop in the lungs and cause signs and symptoms similar to those of tuberculosis. Histoplasmosis ( [link] c ) is caused by the dimorphic fungus Histoplasma capsulatum ; it causes pulmonary infections and, in rare cases, swelling of the membranes of the brain and spinal cord. Treatment of many fungal diseases requires the use of antifungal medications that have serious side effects.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
Privacy Information Security Software Version 1.1a
in a comparison of the stages of meiosis to the stage of mitosis, which stages are unique to meiosis and which stages have the same event in botg meiosis and mitosis
Leah Reply

Get the best Algebra and trigonometry course in your pocket!

Source:  OpenStax, Concepts in biology (biology 1060 tri-c). OpenStax CNX. Jan 15, 2014 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11617/1.1
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'Concepts in biology (biology 1060 tri-c)' conversation and receive update notifications?