SUMMARY: Mutants of f. (cause of pea wilt), distinguished from the parent types by their different morphology, pathogenicity and nutritional requirements, were obtained by ultraviolet irradiation. Pairs of mutants with different nutritional requirements (auxotrophs) formed balanced heterokaryons on non-supplemented medium. Most of the auxotrophs were less pathogenic than the wild-types, whereas heterokaryons between the mutants were not.

Single conidia of a heterokaryon between an auxotroph from race 1 and one from race 2 of gave a small proportion (3 in 10) of colonies which were able to grow on non-supplemented medium. These three prototrophs were presumably diploid because vegetatively they gave new strains with various combinations of colour, nutritional requirements, actinomycete tolerance and pathogenicity.

The results indicate that, in fusaria, heterokaryosis plays a part in variation of virulence and that , which has no known sexual stage, has a system similar to the parasexual cycle described by Pontecorvo for certain other Fungi Imperfecti, that permits the segregation and recombination of genetic factors outside the sexual stage.


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