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Volume :26 Issue : 1 1999      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

Microfungi under stress in Kuwait’s coastal saline depressions

Auther : J. L. MULDER AND HUDA EL-HENDAWY

Department of Biological Sciences,  Kuwait University, P. 0. Box 5969, 13060 Safat, Kuwait

ABSTRACT

Saline depressions are a characteristic feature of coastal areas of Kuwait and possess few microfungi occurring at high frequencies. Dematiaceous genera are isolated as the dominant fungal group from the saline-desert environment. These exhibit differing growth responses to the level of NaCl in their culture media. Growth, both linear hyphal extension and biomass, decreased significantly at concentrations >10% (w/v) NaCl. Conidiogenesis is inhibited while chlamydospore formation is prolific. TEM and SEM studies reveal changes in cell wall layers and the presence of numerous vacuoles in the cytoplasm. Lipid analysis demonstrates a response to the stress, particularly in the major constituent fatty acids, (16:0,18:1,18:2).

Keywords: Microfungi, saline-soil environment, sodium chloride, stress tolerance.

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