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Related to Ascomycota: Basidiomycota, Deuteromycota


A phylum of fungi characterized by the presence of asci and ascospores. Some mycologists have moved the class Ascomycetes to the phylum or division level.

Ascomycota (Ascomycotina)

a diverse group of FUNGI that includes moulds with septate (see SEPTUM) HYPHAE and YEASTS. They are called ‘sac fungi’ because their sexual SPORES, ASCOSPORES, are produced in a sac-like ASCUS. Their asexual spores are usually CONIDIOSPORES, formed in long chains at the end of the CONIDIOPHORE. The term conidia means dust, and these spores are easily detached from the conidiophore and float on the air like dust. The group includes the yeasts Saccharomyces, used in brewing and bread making; Aspergillus, which produces such products as citric acid used in foods; Penicillium which produces PENICILLIN, the ANTIBIOTIC, and which can also be used in making certain cheeses; and Neurospora which is used in genetic studies. Other less beneficial members include some that attack valuable plants, for example one ASCOMYCETE is responsible for DUTCH ELM DISEASE, others are PATHOGENS of CEREALS.


a phylum of the fungi kingdom characterized by septate hyphae, asexual reproduction by conidia and sexual reproduction in an ascus containing eight ascospores. Genera of veterinary importance in the phylum are Aspergillus, Penicillium, Sporothrix, Microsporum and Trichophyton.
References in periodicals archive ?
A 1995 paper in Science reported a DNA-based family tree with five origins of the lichen habit, including two origins within Ascomycota.
In this volume in the series contributors start with a metabolic story, namely a survey of ancient through modern RNA, followed by the origins of plastids as a driving force for the evolution of algae, the evolution and diversity of dinoflagellates from a molecular perspective, the evolution of diatoms, the biodiversity as well as the evolutionary genomics and systematics of ascomycota, yeast biodiversity and function, evolutionary relationships among species of the Aspergillus subgenera Aspergillus and Fumigati, polymerase chain reaction-based methods in Fusarium taxonomy, using molecular markers to study host-pathogen co-evolution, internally transcribed spaces of the 18S-5.
In 1988, DNA studies clearly demonstrated that it was not a single species but a complex group of eukaryotic microorganisms, which were assigned to the kingdom Fungi (2-4) at the branch point between Ascomycota and Basidiomycota (5).