Classification of fungi
The scientific classification of living organisms started in the 18thcentury and at that time there were only two Kingdoms of livingorganisms—the Plant Kingdom and the Animal Kingdom. Anything thatdidn't move was put in the Plant Kingdom, so that's where fungi wereclassified. However, fungi are very strange 'plants' since they don'tmake their own food, as 'ordinary' plants do via photosynthesis. Despitethat, the two-kingdom system was retained into the second half of the20th century. By then, the electron microscope's ability to show finemicroscopic structural detail was making it obvious that the two-Kingdom classification was inadequate.While everyone now agrees that fungi do not belong in the PlantKingdom, there is still some debate over the number of Kingdomsneeded to accommodate the living world. This means that you are verylikely to see a number of different classification schemes as you look indifferent books or web sites.
The basis of which fungi are classified
1. Nutrition andGrowth
Fungi obtain their food either by infecting living organisms as
(Gr. Parasitos-eating beside another), or by attacking dead organic matter as
(Gr. sapros-rotten, bios- life).Fungi which live on dead matter and are incapable of infecting living organisms are called
Those fungi capable of causing diseases or of living on dead organicmatter, according to circumstances,
), andthose which cannot live except on living protoplasm are called
Somefungal hyphae show a widespread association with the roots of higher plants and thisassociation is known as
(Gr. mykes- mushroom + rhiza- root). In theseassociations both plant and fungus derive the benefit. Fungi differ from most plants in thatthey require already elaborated food inorder to live, and are incapable of manufacturingtheir own. But if given carbohydrates in some form preferably glucose, sucrose or maltosemost fungi can synthesize their own proteins by utilizing inorganic or organic sources of nitrogen and various mineral elements essential for their growth. Many fungi are capableof synthesizing vitamins they require for their growth and reproduction. Some, howeverare deficient in thiamine or biotin or both and must obtain these or their precursors fromthe substratum. Fungi usually store excess food in the form of glycogen and oil.Most fungi will grow between 0
C but optimum temperatures lie in the range of 20-30
C. The ability of fungi to withstand extremely low temperatures (as low as –195
C)for at least a few hours has been demonstrated.