Difference between Hyphae and Pseudohyphae

Hyphae vs Pseudohyphae

Hyphae and pseudohyphae (singular – hypha and pseudohypha) are two types of filaments that compose vegetative structures found in fungi. All the fungi except few (ex: yeast) form either hyphae or pseudohyphae. Both structures support spores for reproduction and dissemination by exhibiting various physiological and biochemical activities. These two structures along with yeast form are characteristic features of polymorphic fungi.

What are Hyphae?

Hyphae are defined as elongated, tubular, and branching filaments that form the mycelium (vegetative part of a fungus consisting of numerous filaments) of a fungus. A single hypha consists of one or more elongated tubular cells. Multicellular hyphae are internally divided by cross walls, septa (singular – septum) displaying a chain of closely packed cells. Hyphae with septa are called as septate hyphae and, on the other hand, hyphae without septa are called as aseptate hyphae. Fungi are classified according to above two characters which are based on cell division. There are several other classifications of hyphae according to the form and appearance (e.g.|generative, skeletal, hyaline, granular etc.)

Hyphae are modified according to the function. For an example, the hyphae found in lichens (fungal-algae associations) are modified to protect its reproductive structures and makes a large portion of the infrastructure including the formation of attaching pads to a substrate.

Examples for fungi with true hyphae: -

  • Mucor mucedo(composed of aseptate hyphae)
  • Trichoderma viride (composed of septate branched hyphae)

What are Pseudohyphae?

Pseudohyphae are a type of filaments that form pseudomycelia mostly in polymorphic fungi like Candida spp. It is composed of ellipsoidal and elongated yeast like cells. These cells remain connected as a chain with constrictions at the site where septa found. Pseudohyphae form during the cell division and newly divided cells through budding remained adhered as chains and branches. Some scientists consider pseudohyphae as an intermediate state between yeast like cells and true hyphae.

Pseudohyphae function as for an example in Candida albicans as an invasive mobile form. It is thought that the pathogenicity of C. albicans is increased when it is found as pseudomycelium.

Examples for fungi with pseudohyphae: -

  • Candida albicans (organism that causes candidiasis)
  • Saccharomycopsis figuligera

What is the difference between Hyphae and Pesudohypahe?

• Both hyphae and pseudohyphae are filaments that composed of fungal cells arranged next to each other as a chain.

• Hyphae may or may not contain septa, whereas pseudonymous always contain septa.

• There is no constriction at the place where septa found in hyphae, whereas it is found in pseudohyphae.

• Hyphae can be coenocytic (single celled, multinuclear) or multicellular, but pseudohyphae are always multicellular.

• Hyphae do not show budding whereas pseudohyphae do show budding through which it grows continuously.

• Hyphae are always stationary, whereas pseudohyphae are used to invade cells by growing faster by budding by showing some kind of mobility.

• Both components help to bear reproductive structures.

• Both components are found in polymorphic fungi and in some dimorphic fungi.