SAKSENAEA Saksena, 1953 (Mycologia 45:434); 1 sp. (Saksena, 1953—monograph).

Sakenaea has aerial mycelium that forms a rhizoid when it contacts the substrate, the sporangia are formed on a short stalk that arises from the rhizoid. Sporangia flask-shaped with a long neck, columellate, persistent-walled, multispored, formed in pairs Sporangiospores oblong, relatively small. Zygospores are unknown.

Type species: S. vasiformis

Species of Saksenaea:
S. vasiformis Saksena, 1953 (Mycologia 45:434).

Saksenaea vasiformis was described from soil collected in India (Saksena, 1953). Saksenaea also has been isolated from soil in Georgia (U.S.A.), Honduras, Israel, and Panama (Ajello et al., 1976). Chien et al. (1992) reported isolating S. vasiformis from soil collected near the ocean in Taiwan, and from driftwood found on the coast of the Red Sea in Ethiopia. Pillai and Ahmed (1993) isolated S. vasiformis from rice grain and husks in India.

It is difficult to get Saksenaea to form sporangia in culture and special techniques must be used to induce sporulation (Saksena, 1953; Ellis and Ajello, 1982; Padhyay and Ajello, 1988). It can cause mucormycosis in humans and animals (Ajello et al., 1976).


Ajello, L., D.F. Dean, and R.S. Irwin. 1976. The zygomycete Saksenaea vasiformis as a pathogen of humans with a critical review of the etiology of zygomycosis. Mycologia 68:52-62.

Chien, C.-Y., D.J. Bhat, and W.B. Kendrick. 1992. Mycological observations on Saksenaea vasiformis (Saksenaeaceae, Mucorales). Trans. Mycol. Soc. Japan 33:443-448.

Ellis, J.J., and L. Ajello. 1982. An unusual source for Apophysomyces elegans and a method for stimulating sporulation of Saksenaea vasiformis. Mycologia 74:144-145.

Padhyay, A.A., and L. Ajello. 1988. Simple method of inducing sporulation by Apophysomyces elegans and Saksenaea vasiformis. J. Clin. Microbiol. 26:1861-1863.

Pillai, C.M., and R. Ahmed. 1993. Saksenaea vasiformis, an ecologically important fungus on rice from India. Curr. Sci. 65:291.

Saksena, S. B. 1953. A new genus of the Mucorales. Mycologia 45:426-436.

Updated Mar 12, 2005