Influence of sucrose, mucin and xanthan gum on spore germination of ten different fungi

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Germination of conidia,uredospores and basidiospores of ten diverse fungi were compared in sterile distilled water, 0.5% sucrose, 0.5% mucin and 0.5% xanthan gum. All three compounds generally increased spore germination on cellophane membranes compared to water, but mucin was the most effective. Mucin stimulated significantly more germination than sucrose for 7 of the 10 fungi, and only Aspergillus niger and Colletotrichum gloeosporioides showed greater spore germination in sucrose than in mucin. Sucrose had no effect on uredospore or basidiospore germination, but mucin stimulated germination of these spores. Mucin was more effective than xanthan gum in increasing spore germination for 9 of the 10 fungi. Animal mucin is chemically similar to the natural spore matrix of some fungi and may provide some of the benefits of the spore matrix without the drawback of possible germination inhibitors. Animal mucin may be a useful substitute for the spore matrix in inoculations of a variety of fungi.

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