The key difference between conidiophore and sporangiophore is that conidiophore is the aerial hypha of ascomycetes fungi that bears asexual spores called conidia while sporangiophore is the aerial hypha of zygomycetes fungi that bears asexual spores called sporangiospores.
Fungi are eukaryotic microorganisms which are filamentous in nature. They reproduce sexually as well as asexually. Asexual reproduction is mainly done by asexual spores. There are two main types of asexual spores; they are the conidia and sporangiospores. Conidia are produced in conidiophores. These conidiophores are special spore-bearing reproductive hyphae of Ascomycetes and Basidiomycetes. Meanwhile, sporangiospores are produced in sporangiophores. These sporangiophores are special spore-bearing reproductive hyphae of zygomycetes. Both conidiophores and sporangiophore produce spores through mitotic cell division. Moreover, both types of hyphae are aerial hyphae.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Conidiophore
3. What is Sporangiophore
4. Similarities Between Conidiophore and Sporangiophore
5. Side by Side Comparison – Conidiophore vs Sporangiophore in Tabular Form
What is Conidiophore?
Conidiophore is an aerial hypha that bears asexual spores called conidiospores. Ascomycetes fungi such as Aspergillus and Penicillium and basidiomycetes possess these spore-bearing structures. Conidiophores develop from the conidiophore foot cells belonging to the mycelium which grows on the substrate.
Conidiophores can be septate or aseptate. they are rarely branched. Moreover, the terminal cell of the conidiophore is slightly swollen, but not enclosed in a sac. From conidiophores, sterigmata arise, and from them, conidia are formed externally. Thus, unlike sporangiospores, conidia are not enclosed inside a sac-like structure.
What is Sporangiophore?
Sporangiophore is an aerial hypha that produces asexual spores of zygomycetes. So, sporangiophores terminate by a sac-like structure called a sporangium. Inside the sporangium, asexual spores or sporangiospores are produced.
At the end of the sporangiophore, there is a small structure called columella, which aids in bursting the wall of the sporangium and exposing spores to the environment. Sporangiophores are mainly non-septate. They are also branched and hyaline.
What are the Similarities Between Conidiophore and Sporangiophore?
- Both conidiophore and sporangiophore are two hyphal structures that bear asexual spores of fungi.
- They are mainly aerial hyphae.
- Moreover, they are special reproductive hyphae.
- They produce non-motile spores.
- In both reproductive hyphae, spores are produced by mitosis.
What is the Difference Between Conidiophore and Sporangiophore?
Conidiophores are special reproductive hyphae of ascomycetes and basidiomycetes that bear conidia. Meanwhile, sporangiophores are special reproductive hyphae of zygomycetes that bear sporangiospores. So, this is the key difference between conidiophore and sporangiophore. Besides, conidiophores produce conidia externally. But, sporangiophores produce sporangiospores internally inside a sac-like structure called a sporangium. Therefore, this is another significant difference between conidiophore and sporangiophore.
Moreover, a further difference between conidiophore and sporangiophore is that the conidiophores are rarely branched, and they can be septate or aseptate, while the sporangiophores are branched and aseptate mostly.
Summary – Conidiophore vs Sporangiophore
Conidiophores and sporangiophores are special reproductive hyphae which are spore-bearing. In simple words, both conidiophores and sporangiophore are special asexual spore-producing aerial hyphae of fungi. Conidiophores are produced by fungi belonging to Ascomycetes and Basidiomycetes. In contrast, sporangiophores are produced by fungi belonging to Zygomycetes. Conidiophores produce conidia externally without being enclosed in a sac. Sporangiophores produce spores inside a sac-like structure called a sporangium. Thus, this summarizes the difference between conidiophore and sporangiophore.
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