It has now been sixty years since Blakeslee (1904) reported in Rhizopus nigricans, the common “black bread mold”, the first case of obligatory cross-mating in the fungi. The required interaction between two self-sterile individuals in the process of sexual reproduction he designated heterothallism in distinction to homothallism, in which each individual had the competence to elaborate sexual organs and to complete the sexual cycle in isolation. Within a very short time, the more common species of the Mucorales were unambiguously categorized as heterothallic or homothallic, and in each heterothallic species, two and only two classes of individuals could be found. Blakeslee (1906) considered the two classes of individuals of heterothallic species to be differentiated in respect to sexual sign, since one would react only with the larger, so-called female gametangia of homothallic species and the other only with the smaller, male gametangia. The two classes, previously and arbitrarily designated (+) and (-), were accordingly interpreted as 9 and ♂, respectively.


Neurospora Crassa High Fungus Incompatibility System Mating Competence Incompatibility Factor 
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