SUMMARY: Despite the usefulness of the macrocyst cycle for genetic analysis of slime mould cells, a great difficulty has been the extremely poor germination of the macrocysts. We describe culture conditions for reliable, high-frequency macrocyst germination, using 7 (Dm7) and a mutant MF1 derived from it. Irradiation with relatively short-wavelength light (blue-near-UV) was particularly important for the induction of germination, and only a short period of irradiation was required to obtain a high percentage of germination. There was a critical temperature between 19 and 22 °C for efficient induction of germination; a relatively high pH, around 8.0, also favoured germination. Germination competence increased with the age of the macrocysts.


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