Neurospora crassa has been at the forefront of biological research from the early days of biochemical genetics to current progress being made in understanding gene and genetic network function. Here, we discuss recent developments in analysis of the fundamental form of fungal growth, development and proliferation - the hypha. Understanding the establishment and maintenance of polarity, hyphal elongation, septation, branching and differentiation are at the core of current research. The advances in the identification and functional dissection of regulatory as well as structural components of the hypha provide an expanding basis for elucidation of fundamental attributes of the fungal cell. The availability and continuous development of various molecular and microscopic tools, as utilized by an active and co-supportive research community, promises to yield additional important new discoveries on the biology of fungi. © 2011 The British Mycological Society.
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