SUMMARY: The dry weight of starved of an energy source decreased exponentially. The protein, RNA, DNA and endogenous respiration decreased rapidly during the first few hours of starvation and reached about 25% of their original values after 5 days starvation. The carbohydrate content of the mould only decreased after the first 2 days of starvation. About 60% of the carbon lost during autolysis was oxidized to carbon dioxide. Lysis of organelles in individual hyphal compartments occurred synchronously and did not seem to involve autophagy. Autolysis of separate compartments in the same hyphae was not synchronized. Ribosomes were rapidly degraded but membranes were particularly resistant to breakdown. Intra-hyphal hyphae were observed. In the final stages of autolysis the culture consisted largely of empty hyphal walls. A proportion of cytologically normal hyphal compartments were present at all stages, suggesting that maintenance and/or cryptic growth of some hyphae (or compartments) occurred at the expense of others.


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