Whether a spore results from the sexual union of two similar gametes (zygospore) or from the fertilization of an egg-cell by the protoplasm of a male organ (oospore); or is developed asexually as a motile (zoospore) or a quiescent body cut off from a hypha (conidium) or developed along its course (oidium or chlamydospore), or in its protoplasm (endospore), are matters of importance which have their uses in the classification and terminology of spores, though in many respects they are largely of academic interest.
Solenia, Cyphella - and even simpler cases are met with in Mortierella, where the zygospore is invested by the overgrowth of a dense mat of closely branching hyphae, and in Gymnoascus, where a loose mat of similarly barren hyphae covers in the tufts of asci as they develop.
Germinating zygospore with a germtube bearing a sporangium.
When two similar zoogametes fuse, the process is conjugation, and the product a zygospore (Gr. ?"vy6, yoke).
The germination of a zygospore or oospore is effected by the rupture of an outer cuticularized exosporium; then the cell may protrude an inner wall, the endosporium, and grow out into the new plant (Vaucheria), or the contents may break up into a first brood of zoospores.