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Aspergillus niger. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a fruiting body of the fungus A. niger, on the tip of a conidiophore. The small white, spiky spheres are spores (reproductive cells), about to be released into the air. A. niger grows in household dust, soil, and decaying vegetable matter, including stale food. It is one of the most common causes of otomycosis (fungal ear infections) and, if large amounts of spores are inhaled, may result in the serious lung disease aspergillosis. Magnification: x920 when printed 10 centimetres wide.
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