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Dikaryon is from Greek, di meaning 2 and karyon meaning nut, referring to the cell nucleus.

It is a nuclear feature which is unique to the fungi, in which after plasmogamy the two compatible nuclei of two cells pair off and cohabit without karyogamy the cells of the hyphae, synchronously dividing so that pairs are maintained in the older cells while newer cells or hyphal tips are also binucleate, i.e. dikaryotic; in the Ascomycota this attribute of the nuclei to do such is only found in the Ascogenous hyphae but is the dominant phase in the Basidiomycota. The formation of a dikaryon is a pleisiomorphic character for the subkingdom Dikarya, which covers both the Basidiomycota and Ascomycota. The formaton of croziers in the Ascomycota and of clamp connections in the Basidiomycota, facilitate maintenance of the dikaryons. However, some fungi in each of these phyla have evolved other methods for maintaining the dikaryons, and therefore neither croziers nor clamp connections are ubiquitous in either phylum.

See Also

External links

Fungi Online Page, Formation of Dikaryons Template:Fungus-stub