How do fungus-like protists reproduce?


Quick Answer

Fungus-like protists typically reproduce asexually through the release of spores. These types of protists, such as slime mold, are unicellular organisms that may form large masses of cells under the right conditions.

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Full Answer

Protists are complex cells known as eukaryotes. They have biological similarities to fungi and plants, although they are not classified as either. Slime molds are a primary form of fungus-like protists. They have several life stages and may form as unicellular, multicellular, fungus-like or amoeboid organisms.

Slime molds are typically unicellular. However, cellular slime molds may form large amoebic colonies of cells, known as slugs, when chemically stimulated or when conditions like a lack of nutrients or an incorrect temperature cause them to mass together. These masses of cells are typically attracted to light.

Plasmodial slime molds form a type of large cell with numerous nuclei by fusing their cells' cytoplasms together into a mass known as a plasmodium. Plasmodiums move across the surface on which they form in order to obtain nutrients. Slime molds produce and release spores when their current environment is not habitable. This allows new cells to form in environments that are potentially more habitable. The spores form into single cells that may eventually fuse with other cells to create a plasmodium or a similar biological mass if the conditions are correct.

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