Rye ergot, caused by Claviceps purpurea.
Photograph courtesy J.A. Menge
Stromata produced from ergot (sclerotium) in which ascospores are produced and expelled to infect the next crop of flowering rye or other grasses. The ergots (sclerotia) of this fungus contain a number of biologically active alkaloids including those responsible for the disease of humans and animals called ergotism. This disease caused the death of many people in the middle ages when it was known as the Holy Fire or St. Anthony's fire. Victims often felt as though their skin was on fire, suffered visions and hallucinations, and often lost their hands and feet because of gangrene brought on by the constriction of peripheral blood vessels.
Picture your photograph as the APS Featured Image
Click here to find out more
License to Copy. This
notice hereby grants permission to APS users to copy the image featured for
noncommercial, personal use. All components of APSnet are copyrighted and may
not be reproduced or distributed except by express permission of APS. Copyright
is not claimed for material provided by United States government employees as
part of their work. APS copyright extends to images, text, graphics,
photographs, illustrations, audio, video, computer software, and all other
elements of the site.Instructions to Copy. For PC, position your mouse
cursor on the featured image, click the right mouse button, and choose "Save
Picture As..." or "Save this Image as..." whichever is the case. For Mac, click
the only mouse button and follow the same steps. Users may want to set up a
specific directory and file naming scheme for storing images; otherwise, they
will be saved using your system defaults. Images may be used in any software
application that supports JPEG file format or viewed in an Internet browser as
Get ALL the Latest Updates for ICPP2018: PLANT HEALTH IN A GLOBAL ECONOMY. Follow APS!