WAR of the MICROWORLDS
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Drechmeria coniospora: one of the commonest and best documented of the endoparasitic nematode parasites. It is characaterized by tear-drop shaped conidia with spherical knobs at the distal end that attach to passing nematodes. Most spores attach to the mouth region of the nematode (commonest point of contact) but spores can attach at any point along the length of the body including the tail region (see illustration below).
Left Illustration: Diagram of Drechmeria showing salient features. The conidiogenous cells are phialidic but have been reduced to simple tubular devices (aphanophialides) such is often seen in Rotiferopthora (an endoparasite of rotifers). Drechmeria is related closely to the Verticillium complex of animal parasites. Right Illustration: Shows conidia of fungus attached to buccal (mouth) region of the nematode. Some spores have germinated and you can see faintly the sinuous hyphae of the parasite tracing through the body of the victim. Below left: massive reproductive growth of conidiophores and conidia of Drechmeria bursting through the cuticle of the host. Below right: conidia attached to tail region of nematode.