SEM of the fungus Alternaria alternata

SEM of the fungus Alternaria alternata

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Credit: E. GUEHO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of the fungus Alternaria alternata, a causative agent of respiratory allergies. Here, fungal threads of the vegetative mycelium are seen, each thread is called a hypha, with a spore-producing fruiting body at centre right. Large amounts of spores are produced by this fungus, leading to its allergic properties. Alternaria alternata is a cause of both allergic rhinitis (hay fever) in which inflammation of the mucous membrane of the nose occurs; and of allergic asthma. Asthma is the more serious condition, affecting the lungs. Repeated inhaling of fungal spores may cause hypersensitivity reactions. Magnification: x685 at 6x7cm size.

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Keywords: allergen, allergic asthma, allergy, alternaria, alternaria alternata, asthma, cause, causing allergy, eumycota, false-coloured, fungal, fungal infection, fungi, fungus, mold, mould, mouldy, mycology, nature, naturemycology, rhinitis, scanning electron micrograph, sem, spores, type

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