Organisms In Kingdom Fungi & Its Taxonomy

What type of organisms are included in kingdom Fungi? Also describe their taxonomic status.


Approximately 100,000 species of organisms called "fungi" are known and thousands are thought to be present. This group includes

(i) Pathogens such as rusts, smuts of wheat and corn and molds found growing on important crops and foodstuff.

(ii) Delicate species such as mushrooms, truffles and morels.

(iii) Organisms of commercial use such as Penicillium. It is also source of antibiotic penicillin.

(iv) Yeast it is used in bakeries and breweries.

Ecological role of fungi as decomposers is paralleled only by bacterial.

Taxonomic Status of Fungi:

Taxonomic status of fungi has changed from that of a group of plant kingdom. Now they are placed in a separate kingdom "Fungi".

Plant - Like Characters:

They resemble plants in some respects:

(i) They have cell wall.

(ii) They lack centrioles.

(iii) They are non-motile.

Animal - Like Characters:

Fungi resemble, more animals than plants. They show following animal-like characters:

(i) Fungi are heterotrophs.

(ii) They lack cellulose in their cell wall and contain chitin-a nitrogen containing polysaccharide also found in exoskeleton of arthropods. For this reason, some mycologists (scientists who study fungi) think that fungi and animals probably arose from a commom ancestor.

Differences between Fungi and Animals:

Fungi are different from animals in following ways:

(i) Fungi have cell wall.

(ii) They are absorptive heterotrophs.

(iii) They are non-motile.

So fungi are neither plants nor animals.

Fungi Different from all Organisms:

(i) DNA Studies:

Their DNA studies also confirms that they are different from all other organisms.

(ii) Nuclear Mitosis:

They show a characteristic type of mitosis, called 'nuclear mitosis'. During nuclear mitosis, nuclear envelope does not break; instead the mitotic spindle forms within the nucleus and the nuclear membrane constricts between the two clusters of daughter chromsomes. (In some fungi nuclear envelop dismantles late).


As fungi are distinct from plants, animals and protists in many ways, they are assigned to a separate kingdom 'Fungi'.

Organisms In Kingdom Fungi & Its Taxonomy Organisms In Kingdom Fungi & Its Taxonomy Reviewed by SaQLaiN HaShMi on 6:32 AM Rating: 5

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