Summary: Binding of concanavalin A to the cell surface of developing zoospores was explored by fluorescence microscopy, electron microscopy and radioactive labelling. After labelling with fluorescein isothiocyanate-conjugated concanavalin A, the fluorescence intensity of individual non-induced zoospores varied greatly. On the other hand, similarly labelled zoospores, induced with K ions for synchronous development, revealed a more even distribution of fluorescence intensity. The zoospore surface contained 4.3 × 10 concanavalin A binding sites per cell which were randomly distributed and closely attached to the surface. The affinity constants ranged from 7.5 × 10 M to 3.5 × 10 M, while the Scatchard plot was typical of heterogeneous binding. Further developed cells, round cells and germlings contained 3.0 × 10 to 2.1 × 10 concanavalin A binding sites per cell which were mostly loosely associated patches protruding into the extracellular region. The affinity constants decreased appreciably compared with those measured at the zoospore stage. Specific concanavalin A binding characteristics appeared to correlate with the respective developmental stage of the zoospore.


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