Plasmodiophorales

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Plasmodiophora brassicae - clubroot symptoms on Brassica napus var. napobrassica (click on image to enlarge it)
Source: Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services - IPM Images

Plasmodiophoromycota - Plasmodiophorales

The Plasmodiophoromycota with its order the Plasmodiophorales are also known as slime molds. Most are plant pathogens and mainly infect the roots. They live inside the infected cells, causing hypertrophy. An important feature is the morphology of their zoospores which have 2 flagellae of unequal lengths attached to the anterior end. The infections by some species results in deformed roots (clubroot), others form galls/scab and/or are important as vectors of plant viruses.

The infected cells produce a zoosporangium which cleaves into secondary zoospores. These can infect other cells and transform into a multinucleate plasmodium. The plasmodium produces resting spores which can survive in the environment for many years. Upon germination they form primary zoospores which are identical to the secondary zoospores and can again infect root cells.

Taxonomically, the Plasmodiophoromycota are probably not related to fungi like the Ascomycota or Basidiomycota and are sometimes grouped together with the protozoa.


The following genera and individual species are currently entered under this group: