Several studies have explored in depth the biochemistry and genetics of the pigments present in Fusarium graminearum
, but there is a need to discuss their relationship with the mold’s observable surface color pattern variation throughout its lifecycle. Furthermore, they require basic cataloguing, including a description of their major features known so far. Colors are a viable alternative to size measurement in growth studies. When grown on yeast extract agar (YEA) at 25 °C, F. graminearum
initially exhibits a whitish mycelium, developing into a yellow-orange mold by the sixth day and then turning into wine-red. The colors are likely due to accumulation of the golden yellow polyketide aurofusarin and the red rubrofusarin, but the carotenoid neurosporaxanthin also possibly plays a major role in the yellow or orange coloration. Torulene might contribute to red tones, but it perhaps ends up being converted into neurosporaxanthin. Culmorin is also present, but it does not contribute to the color, though it was initially isolated in pigment studies. Additionally, there is the 5-deoxybostrycoidin-based melanin, but it mostly occurs in the teleomorph’s perithecium. There is still a need to chemically quantify the pigments throughout the lifecycle, and analyze their relationships and how much each impacts F. graminearum
’s surface color.
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