Rhizopus oryzae

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Classification

Kingdom: Fungi; Order: Mucorales; Family:Mucoraceae [1]

Rhizopus oryzae

Description and Significance

Rhizopus oryzae, also known as Rhizopus arrhizus, is a filamentous fungus that is the most common cause of mucormycosis, also referred to as zygomycosis. It is commonly found in dead organic matter. In my opinion, this microorganism is important because it is not only an opportunistic pathogen that cause human disease in immunocompromised people, such as those with diabetes mellitus, cancer, or AIDS, but also used as the source of making fermented foods and alcoholic beverages in Asia. [1] So, this microbe is very closely connected to human life.

Structure, Metabolism, and Life Cycle

Rhizopus oryzae is consists of four main structure such as sporangium, apophysis, sporangiophore, and rhizoid. It is grows by extending filaments called hypae along the surface of substrate, and penetrates the substrate with root-like structure called rhizoid. Rhizoid oryzae digests its food outside of body, and transport it inside of its body. [4] It can do this step by either sexual and asexual reproduction. During the asexual reproduction, spore-filled sporangia at the top of hypae. As the reproduction occurs, the haploid spores from the sporangia are spread out of the broken sporangia. These spores travel to the other organisms and send an elongated hypae inside of organism to absorb nutrients. As it develops, the new haploid fungus can produce more sporangia to initiate another cycle of Rhizopus oryzae. [4]

Ecology and Pathogenesis

Rhizopus oryzae is commonly grown in dead organic matter, and soil. It cause human disease with diabetes mellitus, cancer, or AIDS by infecting pulmonary, cutaneous, and gastrointestinal tract, and facial sinuses, which expand to the brain. [2] The symptom of these disease are facial and eye pain, allergic reaction, bulging eyes, fever, cough, and breathing difficulty. [3]

References

[1]n.p. Genome. NCBI, n.d. Web. 20 July 2013. [2]Crum-Cianflone, Nancy, et al. Mucormycosis. Medscape, 2 April 2013. Web. 21 July 2013. [3]n.p. Symptom of Rhizopus. Right Diagnosis, n.d. Web. 21 July 2013. [4]n.p. Tutorial 31.1 Life cycle of Zygomycete, n.d. Web. 21 July 2013.

Author

Page authored by Yesol Kim, student of Mandy Brosnahan, Instructor at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, MICB 3301/3303: Biology of Microorganisms.