In this article we will discuss about the asexual and sexual reproductive structure of penicillium.
Asexual Reproduction of Penicillium:
1. Asexual reproduction takes place by conidia.
2. Conidia develop on branched, septate and multinucleate conidiophores.
3. A conidiophore is an erect body developed from any cell of the mycelium.
4. Brush-like apical portion of the conidiopnore is known as penicillus, which bears many bottle- shaped phial ides (Fig. 87). Sometimes, it bears primary, secondary or tertiary branches, and the ultimate branches are called metulae, which bear the sterigmata or phialides.
5. Sterigmata are uninucleate structures, and bear conidia, arranged in basipetalous chains.
6. Each conidium is a small, ovoid or globose, uninucleate but sometimes multinucleate, bluish- green or pale-coloured structure with a smooth or sometimes rough wall.
7. Conidia are dispersed by the wind, and on getting the suitable conditions they germinate into a new mycelium.
Sexual Reproduction of Penicillium:
1. Sexual reproduction takes place by ascospores formed in ascus (Fig. 88).
2. Fruiting body is of cleistothecial type.
3. In each cleistothecium are present many asci.
4. Each ascus contains eight ascospores.
5. Each ascospore germinates and forms new mycelium.