SUMMARY: Conidia of the endoparasitic nematophagous fungus adhere to the sensory organs of the nematode leading to a complete loss of the nematode's ability to be attracted to fungi. Sialic acids located on the head region of the nematode seem to be involved in this interaction. Treatment of the nematode with sialidase reduced attraction towards fungi, and treatment with the sialic acid-specific lectin, limulin, reduced both nematode attraction and conidial adhesion. Other lectins tested (WGA, SBL, HPL, Con A) gave no effect on either attraction or adhesion. Treatment of conidia with trypsin or glutaraldehyde reduced conidial adhesion, indicating the presence of a fungal sialic acid-specific carbohydrate-binding protein. The results show the importance of sialic acids in nematode chemotaxis and also in adhesion of conidia of Sialic acid, therefore, seems to be a link between attraction and adhesion in this system.


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