Morphogenesis by symbiogenesis

Int Microbiol. 1998 Dec;1(4):319-26.


Here we review cases where initiation of morphogenesis, including the differentiation of specialized cells and tissues, has clearly evolved due to cyclical symbiont integration. For reasons of space, our examples are drawn chiefly from the plant, fungal and bacterial kingdoms. Partners live in symbioses and show unique morphological specializations that result when they directly and cyclically interact. We include here brief citations to relevant literature where plant, bacterial or fungal partners alternate independent with entirely integrated living. The independent, or at least physically unassociated stages, are correlated with the appearance of distinctive morphologies that can be traced to the simultaneous presence and strong interaction of the plant with individuals that represent different taxa.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bacteria / growth & development*
  • Bacteria / ultrastructure
  • Fungi / growth & development*
  • Fungi / ultrastructure
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Morphogenesis
  • Plants / embryology*
  • Plants / ultrastructure
  • Symbiosis / physiology*