Q. Which is not a characteristic of fungi?
A. They can be parasites.
B. Holozoic nutrition.
C. Absorptive nutrition.
D. They can be mutualists.
Answer: B. Holozoic nutrition.
A. They can be parasites:
Yes, fungi cab be parasites that colonize animal or plant cells and exploit host nutrients, causing life-threatening diseases. In the case of plants, fungi drastically reduce the overall plant yield. There are several diseases diagnosed in animals that are caused by fungal colonization, including Histoplasmosis, Aspergillosis, Pneumocystis pneumonia, tinea corporis, Onychomycosis, Blastomycosis, Candidiasis, Coccidioidomycosis, eye infection, etc.
B. Holozoic Nutrition:
No, this type of nutrition is not possible by fungal organisms. Animals (such as amoeba) engulf (internalization) complex solid or liquid forms of food from the outside and then digest them into smaller molecules through holozoic nutrition. In the case of fungi, the complex molecules cannot pass through the cell membrane; instead, they are just digested outside by digestion enzymes secreted by fungi and later absorbed by fungi through the hype.
C. Absorptive nutrition:
Yes, fungi perform absorptive nutrition, in which fungal cells secrete extracellular enzymes into the substrate and digest them into small, easily assimilated molecules that are later absorbed through the fungal cell membrane through the hype.
D. They can be mutualists:
Yes, fungi can establish a mutualistic relationship with other fungi or distinct living organisms. For instance, 1) mycorrhiza is a type of fungi that exhibits a symbiotic relationship with plants in the rhizosphere region. 2) lichen is a type of symbiotic structure formed by the combination of photosynthetic bacteria (cyanobacteria, autotrophs) and heterotropic fungi, which is mostly found on rocks and barks. 3) endophytic fungi colonize the plant tissue and provide PGPR properties to the plants.
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