Date of Award


Degree Type


University or Center

Atlanta University (AU)

Degree Name





The purpose of this investigation is to study the effects of methylxanthines, catecholamines, and cyclic nucleotides on melanin synthesisand conidiation using the technique of phase contrast microscopy. Verticillium wild type (T9) strain was grown in both sucrose nitrate liquid medium and polygalacturonic acid media (SNLM and PGAM).

These media allowed rapid production of conidia and synchronous development of microsclerotia respectively. Even though caffeine has a greater effect on conidiation, both caffeine and theophylline promoted melanization. Dibutyl cyclic AMP to lesser extent inhibited conidiation, while cyclic AMP had little to no effect on conidiation. Dibutyl cyclic AMP inhibited melanin production. Cyclic AMP had a stimulatory effect on melanin production. Isoproterenol a stimulant of adenylate cyclase activity, inhibited conidiation the first two days, but had no apparent effect after day 3. Isoproterenol also induced melanin production in the flask.

Propranolol, an antagonist of hormonally induced adenylate cyclase activity, did not repress conidiation when compared to the drug-free SNLM. Melanin was not formed in either SNLM and PGAM, suggesting that the effect of propranolol was opposite that of isoproterenol. Propranolol, a beta blocking agent, reversed the isoproterenol induced inhibition of conidiation. This reversal indicates that there is a receptor which isoproterenol attached itself to - the binding beta receptor site.

The isoproterenol effect on conidiation and melanin synthesis indicates that, there might be cyclic AMP involvement in development, since this agent affects cyclic AMP level.

Since melanin is known to be associated with microsclerotia, it is possible that cyclic AMP might be involved in this development.

In this study, the effects of methylxanthines, catecholamines and cyclic nucleotides on melanin synthesis and conidiation was determined. There is every possibility that cyclic AMP might be involved in the regulation of conidiation process and melanin synthesis.

Included in

Biology Commons