The biochemical properties of strains of most of the known species of Thirumalachar were compared. The mode of formation of sclerotia by a strain of Thirumalachar and Sukapure was studied by light and electron microscopy. Hyphae first show numerous lipid inclusions and then divide into cells in which lipid occupies more and more space. An intercellular cement is deposited forming a plurilocular structure. The lipids, which account for 50% of the weight of the biomass, are triglycerides of branched-chain fatty acids of the iso/anteiso series, principally C and C. The intercellular cement is rich in L-2,3-diaminopropionic acid, an amino acid not previously found associated with microbial structures.


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