The pycnidiospore of Phyllosticta ampelicida: surface properties involved in substratum attachment and germination Academic Article uri icon


  • Pycnidiospores of Phyllosticta ampelicida germinate only after they become attached to a hydrophobic substratum. They do not readily attach or germinate on hydrophilic surfaces or on nutrient-rich media. The properties of the spore surface that function in attachment and signal mediation for germination were investigated in this study. Pycnidiospores were surrounded by a sheath that bound Concanavalin A (Con A)-TRITC and only weakly bound wheat germ agglutinin (WGA)-FITC. Galanthus nivalis lectin-FlTC selectively bound primarily to the apical region of the sheath associated with the appendage. Con A, but not WGA or GNL, disrupted spore attachment. The Con A effect on spore attachment was significantly reduced when the lectin was pre-mixed with methyl-D--mannoside. The sheath as well as the associated appendage was removed with either Novozym 234 or crude -glucuronidase. Such sheathless spores were initially adhesion incompetent but, by 40 min, the spores regained their ability to adhere to hydrophobic surfaces through the secretion of material that had an affinity toward colloidal gold. Non-treated pycnidiospores surrounded by sheath remained spatially separate; however, sheathless spores readily agglutinated. Addition of cations enhanced attachment to both hydrophobic and hydrophilic surfaces presumably through the masking of electronegative groups on the sheath or by reduction of the ordered water-shell surrounding the sheath. In particular, Ca2+ induced both attachment and germination on normally non-inductive hydrophilic surfaces, suggesting an additional role for Ca2+ in signal mediation for germination.

published proceedings

  • Fungal Biology

author list (cited authors)

  • Shaw, B. D., & Hoch, H. C.

citation count

  • 39

complete list of authors

  • Shaw, BD||Hoch, HC

publication date

  • January 1999