Unicellular mushrooms

No living organism on Earth has such properties as fungi. They are so complex that their kingdom is still not fully understood. Their classification, in contrast to that for plants or animals, is very interesting if only because it necessarily takes into account the conditional division into "lower" and "higher" mushrooms. Mushrooms are on the peculiar border of the two kingdoms of wildlife - plants and animals. On Earth, there are multicellular and unicellular fungi. The study of fungi is the science of mycology, which is attributed to the botanical sciences, because mushrooms were previously included in the kingdom of the plant.

Unicellular mushrooms

The principle of division of mushrooms

These organisms are classified according to the presence or absence of mycelium and fruiting body. The main types are:

  • hats;
  • moldy;
  • yeast.

Yeast is often called the extra-taxonomic group of unicellular fungi, which have switched to a permanent habitat in environments (liquid and semi-liquid) rich in nutrients. There are species related to ascomycetes, there are those belonging to basidiomycetes.

With each of these species, a person has repeatedly encountered in his life. Almost all unicellular fungi belong to yeast, which number about 1, 500 species. The division into groups of lower and higher mushrooms is based on the principle of the structure of the mycelium:

  • Lower: the mycelium in its structure does not have partitions, therefore it is also called non-cellular.
  • Higher: the mycelium is divided into cells (cellular).

The size of the body is the division of mushrooms into the following groups:

  • Micromycetes: microscopically small organisms, representing the bulk of the fungi.
  • Macromycetes: this includes fungi that have a fruiting body that develops above the surface of the soil.

Description of Unicellular

Some facts made scientists think that fungi belong to a special group of plants without chlorophyll and chloroplasts.

With the development of science, research has shown the presence in their composition of enzymes characteristic of animals. The property was revealed to move towards the light or food, which is characteristic of higher-level creatures. It has been proven that fungi have signs of animals that have organs of movement.

All unicellular mushrooms combine some characteristic identification features:

  • consist of 1 cell;
  • multiply rapidly;
  • the presence of multicore mycelium;
  • the presence of hyphae (thin threads);
  • microscopic dimensions;
  • lack of plastids;
  • reproduction by spores;
  • heterotrophic nutrition.

Thin threads (hyphae) serve to weave and are essential for the formation of the mycelium and the fruiting body. There is chitin in every cell wall of the fungus, and urea in the decay products.


Unicellular fungi multiply rapidly

All unicellular and multicellular fungi are subject to classification and systematization. The main unicellular groups include the following:

  • Oomycetes: members of the class are characterized by well-developed non-cellular mycelium. The simplest mushrooms of the order Saprolegnievye resemble chitridiomycetes. Representatives of oomycete are ectrogella, lagen idr.
  • Chitridiomycetes: the mycelium is poorly developed, the thallus is plasmodium (a vegetative body represented by plasma Iassa with many nuclei and without a cell membrane) with rhizoid hyphae. They are represented by olpidium, synchitrium, spizellomas, monoblepharid ones, etc. They feel good both in water and on land. To a greater extent parasitize on plants in water and on animals on land.
  • Zygomycetes: the class is represented by fungi with a well-developed non-cellular or in mature state mycelium divided into cells to separate the reproductive organs - the reproductive organs from the main plasma mass. Among them, parasites are found in humans and animals. Sometimes plants are affected. Examples of zygomycetes: trichomycetes, mucors, zoopagalis, etc.
  • Ascomycetes (partially): the class includes both unicellular and multicellular organisms. Typical representatives of unicellular ascomycetes are yeast.

Features of life

The kingdom of these organisms is huge. Many of the representatives in the process of evolution found a place for themselves in the earth and in the water.

All the processes that accompany their life lead to the release of certain enzymes, with the help of which they subsequently get their food.

Letting out formations resembling rhizoids, they quickly stick to the intended place and absorb food. Some representatives make this their surface.

Zoopagalis learned to feed on small insects, arthropods or protozoa, which themselves adhere to their outer layer.

The sticky surface gradually digests everything that is on it. Therefore, zoopagalis are considered predators.

Yeast works differently. They produce enzymes and chemical compounds in their bodies that allow them to survive, using sugar for their nutrition during fermentation. The vital activity of other organisms allows you to get the necessary substances to create drugs.

In reproduction, the simplest mushrooms are similar, almost all do it non-sexually. These unicellulars have few similarities, it is difficult to combine them. Therefore, the vital processes, structure and description of each are better considered separately.

Description of species

There are many varieties of unicellular mushrooms in the world.

All these organisms have certain characteristics of lifestyle and reproduction. Mycelium is almost undeveloped, and movement occurs at the expense of flagella. Soil individuals form mycorrhiza with plant roots. Their cellular composition is similar. These are mainly parasites, obligate or optional, which humanity faces every day.

A fungus mold

The most striking and well-known representative is mold, and in particular, its typical educator is the fungus mucor. It is found both on the soil in the form of gray, and in damp rooms (in the basement or bathroom) or foodstuffs that have been stored under inappropriate conditions for a long time.

The mycelium of this unicellular fungus is characterized by the presence of many nuclei. and has a large branching mycelium, it has only one cell. Belongs to zygomycetes, from which they prepare Chinese sourdough, similar to our yeast. Enzymes that these organisms contain in their composition are used for medical purposes.

Irina Selyutina (Biologist):

Representatives of the genus Mukor in the countries of the Asian continent are used as one of the components of the starter culture (“Chinese yeast”, “stew”) or directly to obtain fermented foods, as soy cheese, pace. For cooking, soybeans, cereals (rice, etc.), coconut kernels are used. Mukorovye also find their application for the production of alcohol from potato tubers.

Part of the mucoric can cause mycoses (mucoromycoses) of the lungs (false tuberculosis), the brain or other organs of a person, poultry and farm animals. These include, for example, branched absidia, small mucor, Kona rhizopus.

Outwardly, the colony of mucor looks like a gray fluff or beige plaque. It causes decomposition of organic matter and serves as a natural orderly.


Yeast fungus is known to all housewives who have at least once encountered homemade cakes. This organism lives on constantly budding colonies. It consists of one mycelium, part of the septum is absent. They are classified as useful organisms. Some strains were bred artificially.

By nature, protozoa are optional parasites. Like most living organisms, they can breathe oxygen and emit carbon dioxide. When interacting with sugar, fermentation occurs. Different species feed on substrates. Some interact better with hexose, while others interact with lipids or proteins. As a result of their activity, diacetyl, fusel oils, dimethyl sulfide and isoamyl alcohol arise - the result of fermentation.


Among the unicellular organisms, there are representatives that are dangerous to humans, which can cause a variety of diseases. The list of parasitic representatives is quite large. The most famous are those that cause diseases of the skin, hair, nails in humans, harm plants and animals.

Skin diseases can cause trichophytone and microsporum. Candida is the cause of candidiasis in women. Dermatophytes suffer from nails. Lichen and black spots on the body causes a pedestal.

Irina Selyutina (Biologist):

Diagnoses of mycosis of the scalp are based on data of the so-called clinical picture and microscopy of a hair pulled out for examination (scraping of scales) in a wet preparation using KOH. The study of the external and internal appearance of the hair shaft, the size of the spores - allow you to identify the parasite and prescribe treatment.

Phytophthora is dangerous for plants. It affects the root system and leaf cover. Rot occurs, some plants die.

Value for man

These organisms are of great importance in human life. They are good helpers in various important processes. So, yeast fermentation is important for the housewife; in agriculture, they help rot the waste, they are the natural “decomposers” of organics, which significantly speeds up the process without the use of chemicals. Unicellular organisms are necessary for the development of the food industry. They are used to prepare feed for animals and birds.

They are important in cooking, cosmetology, medicine and pharmaceuticals. Many drugs are made on the basis of different types of mold.


The largest and most developed part of living organisms is fungi. It consists of different types and orders, there are multicellular or unicellular. These are the most ancient inhabitants of the Earth whose nature has not been fully studied. Humanity cannot do without them, although many of them are parasites.


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