While some moulds (Penicillium, Aspergillus) can utilize almost any organic food-materials, other fungi are more restricted in their choice - e.g.
Next he sought to prepare the inactive form of the acid by artificial means; and after great and long-continued labour he succeeded, and was led to the commencement of his classical researches on fermentation, by the observation that when the inactive acid was placed in contact with a special form of mould (Penicillium glaucum) the right-handed acid alone was destroyed, the left-handed variety remained unchanged.
The inactive mixture may be resolved into its active components by fractional crystallization of the cinchonine salt, when the salt of the dextro modification separates first; or the ammonium salt may be fermented by Penicillium glaucum, when the laevo form is destroyed and the dextro form remains untouched; on the other' hand, Saccharomyces ellipsoideus destroys the dextro form, but does not touch the laevo form.
Among the enzymes already extracted from fungi are invertases (yeasts, moulds, &c.), which split cane-sugar and other complex sugars with hydrolysis into simpler sugars such as dextrose and levulose; diastases, which convert starches into sugars (Aspergillus, &c.); cytases, which dissolve cellulose similarly (Botrytis, &c.); peptases, using the term as a general one for all enzymes which convert proteids into peptones and other bodies (Penicillium, &c.); lipases, which break up fatty oils (Empusa, Phycomyces, &c.); oxydases, which bring about the oxidations and changes of colour observed in Boletus, and zymase, extracted by Buchner from yeast, which brings about the conversion of sugar into alcohol and carbondioxide.
The same fact is indicated by the wide range of organic substances which can be utilized by Penicillium and other moulds, and by the behaviour of parasitic fungi which destroy various cell-contents and tissues.
A second type is developed as follows: the primary hypha forms a septum below its apex as before, and the terminal conidium, thus abstricted, puts out a branch at its apex, which starts as a mere point and rapidly swells to a second conidium; this repeats the process, and so on, so that we now have a chain of conidia developed in acropetal succession, the oldest being below, and, as in Penicillium, &c., branches put forth lower down may repeat the process (Hormodendron).
Thus in Penicillium, Eurotium, Erysiphe, &c., hyphal ends which are the initials of ascogenous branches, are invested by closely packed branches at an early stage of development, and the asci develop inside what has by that time become a complete investment.
Liebig), and may be prepared by the action of Penicillium glaucum on a solution of ordinary ammonium lactate.