Recently, the United Nations Biodiversity has urged people globally to use the word ‘funga’ whenever they say ‘flora and fauna’, in order to highlight the importance of fungi.
- Fungi, along with Animalia (animals), Plantae (plants), Protista, Archaea/Archaebacteria, and Bacteria or Eubacteria form the six ‘kingdoms’ of biology.
- They are eukaryotic organisms; i.e., their cells contain membrane-bound organelles and clearly defined nuclei.
- Reproduction: Fungi usually reproduce both sexually and asexually.
- Fungi are either terrestrial or aquatic, the latter living in freshwater or marine environments.
- They are found in all temperate and tropical regions of the world where there is sufficient moisture to enable them to grow.
- A few species of fungi live in the Arctic and Antarctic regions, although they are rare and are more often found living in symbiosis with algae in the form of lichens.
- Importance of fungi
- They help in breaking down dead organic material, they continue the cycle of nutrients through ecosystems.
- Fungi, as food, play a role in human nutrition in the form of mushrooms.
- They also act as agents of fermentation in the production of bread, cheeses, alcoholic beverages, and numerous other food preparations.
- Secondary metabolites of fungi are used as medicines, such as antibiotics and anticoagulants.
Q1) What are Prokaryotic organisms?
Prokaryotic organisms are a diverse group of microorganisms that lack a true cell nucleus and other membrane-bound organelles. They are known for their simplicity in cellular structure but are incredibly diverse in terms of their metabolic capabilities and ecological roles.