Delicate, usually branching filament, many of which collectively form the mycelium and fruiting bodies of a fungus. Food molecules and other substances are transported along hyphae by the movement of the cytoplasm, known as “cytoplasmic streaming”.
Typically hyphae grow by increasing in length from the tips and by the formation of side branches. Hyphae of the higher fungi (the ascomycetes and basidiomycetes) are divided by cross walls or septa at intervals, whereas those of lower fungi (for example, bread mold) are undivided. However, even the higher fungi are not truly cellular, as each septum is pierced by a central pore, through which cytoplasm, and even nuclei, can flow. The hyphal walls contain chitin, a polysaccharide.
Any of the threadlike filaments forming the mycelium of a fungus.