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Concept: Agaricales


Drugs dedicated to alleviate neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s have always been associated with debilitating side effects. Medicinal mushrooms which harness neuropharmacological compounds offer a potential possibility for protection against such diseases. Pleurotus giganteus (formerly known as Panus giganteus) has been consumed by the indigenous people in Peninsular Malaysia for many years. Domestication of this wild mushroom is gaining popularity but to our knowledge, medicinal properties reported for this culinary mushroom are minimal.

Concepts: Neurology, Neurodegenerative disorders, Latin America, Malaysia, Agaricus bisporus, Indigenous peoples, Agaricales, Pleurotus nebrodensis


Presented are results of a study on accumulation and distribution of (210)Po and (210)Pb in the fruitbodies of parasol mushroom (Macrolepiota procera) and risk to human consumer due to exposure from highly radiotoxic decay particles emitted by both radionuclides. Mushrooms were collected from 16 forested places in central and northern regions of Poland. Activity concentrations of (210)Po and (210)Pb were determined after radiochemical separation of nuclides and subsequent measurement using validated method and alpha spectrometer. Results showed on spatially heterogeneous distribution of the (210)Po and (210)Po activity concentrations in M. procera and two interpolation maps were prepared. Activity concentrations of nuclides in dried caps of M. procera were in the range from 3.38 ± 0.41 to 16.70 ± 0.33 Bq∙(210)Po ∙kg(-1) and from 5.11 ± 0.21 to 13.42 ± 0.30 Bq∙(210)Pb ∙kg(-1). Consumption of M. procera foraged in central and northern Poland should not contribute significantly to the annual effective radiation doses from (210)Po and (210)Pb due to amount of both nuclides accumulated by fungus in caps.

Concepts: Ionizing radiation, Fungus, Radioactive decay, Mushroom, Agaricales, Macrolepiota, Parasol mushroom, Shaggy parasol


Agaricomycetes, or mushrooms, are familiar, conspicuous and morphologically diverse Fungi. Most Agaricomycete fruiting bodies are ephemeral, and their fossil record is limited. Here we report diverse gilled mushrooms (Agaricales) and mycophagous rove beetles (Staphylinidae) from mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber, the latter belonging to Oxyporinae, modern members of which exhibit an obligate association with soft-textured mushrooms. The discovery of four mushroom forms, most with a complete intact cap containing distinct gills and a stalk, suggests evolutionary stasis of body form for ∼99 Myr and highlights the palaeodiversity of Agaricomycetes. The mouthparts of early oxyporines, including enlarged mandibles and greatly enlarged apical labial palpomeres with dense specialized sensory organs, match those of modern taxa and suggest that they had a mushroom feeding biology. Diverse and morphologically specialized oxyporines from the Early Cretaceous suggests the existence of diverse Agaricomycetes and a specialized trophic interaction and ecological community structure by this early date.

Concepts: Evolution, Insect, Fungus, Beetle, Mushroom, Agaricales, Agaricomycetes, Rove beetle


To study the antidiabetic activity of Pleurotus ostreatus in normal and alloxan-induced diabetic mice.

Concepts: Agaricales, Lovastatin, Pleurotus eryngii, Pleurotus, Oyster mushroom


BACKGROUND: The oyster mushroom, Pleurotus ostreatus is cultivated worldwide. It is one of the most appreciated mushrooms due to its high nutritional value. Immersion in hot water is one of the most popular and worldwide treatment used for mushroom farmers. It is cheap and easy to implement. AIMS: To compare the yields obtained during mushroom production of P. ostreatus using different pre-treatments: immersion in hot water, sterilization by steam and the use of fungicide to determine if they influence mushroom crop. METHODS: Four different treatments of substrate (wheat straw) were carried out: i) immersion in hot water (IHW); ii) steam sterilization; iii) Chemical; iv) Untreated. The residual water from the IHW treatment was used to evaluate the mycelium growth and the production of P. ostreatus. RESULTS: Carbendazim treatment produced highest yields (BE: 106.93 %) meanwhile that IHW produced the lowest BE with 75.83 %. Sugars, N, P, K and Ca were found in residual water of IHW treatment. The residual water increased the mycelium growth but did not increase yields. CONCLUSIONS: We have proved IHW treatment of substrate reduced yields at least 20 % when compared with other straw treatments such as steam, chemical or untreated wheat straw. Nutrients like sugars, proteins and minerals were found in the residual water extract which is the resultant water where the immersion treatment is carried out. The loss of these nutrients would be the cause of yield decrease. Alternative methods to the use of IHW as treatment of the substrate should be considered to reduce economical loss.

Concepts: Mycelium, Mushroom, Agaricales, Fungiculture, Pleurotus eryngii, Pleurotus, Oyster mushroom, Mycoremediation


The amount of the trace elements As, Ba, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Li, Mn, Ni, Pb, Rb, Se, Sr, and Zn was measured in top soils and edible mushrooms, Boletus edulis, Macrolepiota procera, collected at five distinct green microhabitats inside the Lucca province, North-Central Italy (years 2008-2009). Results showed a top soil element content within the Italian statutory limits. Concerning the amount of mushroom elements, we observed significant species-differences obtaining higher levels of Ni, Rb, and Se in B. edulis or As, Pb, Cu in M. procera. Bioaccumulation factors (BCFs: element in mushroom/element in soil) resulted species-dependent and element-selective: in particular, B. edulis preferentially accumulated Se (BCFs varying from 14 to 153), while M. procera mainly concentrated Cu (BCFs varying from 5 to 15). As well, both species displayed between-site BCF differences. By a multivariate principal component approach, cluster analysis (CA), we could resolve two main clusters of soil element composition, corresponding to the most ecologically divergent sites. Besides, CA showed no cluster relating to element contents of B. edulis at the different collection sites, while a separation in groups was found for M. procera composition with respect to harvesting locations, suggesting uptake systems, in this saprotrophic species, sensitive to microhabitat. Regarding consumer safety, Cd, Hg, Pb levels resulted sometime relevant in present samples, never reaching values from current literature on mushrooms collected in urban-polluted areas. Our findings encourage a deeper assessment of the molecular mechanisms of metal intake by edible mushrooms, encompassing genetic biochemical and geo-ecological variables, with particular awareness to element bioavailability in soils and fungi.

Concepts: Vegetarian cuisine, Boletus edulis, Mushroom, Edible mushroom, Agaricales, Tuscany, Edible fungi, Mushroom hunting


This article reviews and updates data on macro and trace elements and radionuclides in edible wild-grown and cultivated mushrooms. A huge biodiversity of mushrooms and spread of certain species over different continents makes the study on their multi-element constituents highly challenging. A few edible mushrooms are widely cultivated and efforts are on to employ them (largely Agaricus spp., Pleurotus spp., and Lentinula edodes) in the production of selenium-enriched food (mushrooms) or nutraceuticals (by using mycelia) and less on species used by traditional medicine, e.g., Ganoderma lucidum. There are also attempts to enrich mushrooms with other elements than Se and a good example is enrichment with lithium. Since minerals of nutritional value are common constituents of mushrooms collected from natural habitats, the problem is however their co-occurrence with some hazardous elements including Cd, Pb, Hg, Ag, As, and radionuclides. Discussed is also the problem of erroneous data on mineral compounds determined in mushrooms.

Concepts: Nutrition, Dietary mineral, Mineral, Mushroom, Edible mushroom, Agaricales, Lentinula, Shiitake


The short shelf-life of mushrooms is an obstacle to the distribution and marketing of the fresh product. Thus, prolonging postharvest storage, while preserving their quality, would benefit the mushroom industry as well as consumers. There has been extensive research on finding the most appropriate technology for mushrooms preservation. Gamma, electron-beam and UV irradiation have been shown to be potential tools in extending the postharvest shelf-life of fresh mushrooms. Studies evaluating the effects of ionizing radiation are available mainly in cultivated species such as Agaricus bisporus, Lentinus edodes and Pleurotus ostreatus. This review comprises a comprehensive study of the effects of irradiation on physico-chemical parameters (weight, colour, texture and pH), chemical compounds including nutrients (proteins, sugars and vitamins) and non-nutrients (phenolics, flavonoids and flavour compounds), and on biochemical parameters such as enzymatic activity of mushrooms for different species and from different regions of the world.

Concepts: Ionizing radiation, Ultraviolet, Nutrition, Species, Mushroom, Agaricus bisporus, Agaricales, Agaricus


Abstract To assess the effect of edible mushroom extracts on the induction of T-helper 1 (Th1) immunity, we examined differences in interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) and interleukin (IL)-4 production in mice induced by hot-water extracts of 15 species of edible mushroom. Extracts from Agaricus bisporus, Flammulina velutipes, Hypsizigus marmoreus, Lentinula edodes, and Lyophyllum decastes induced both IFN-γ and IL-4 production in mice, whereas extracts from Pleurotus ostreatus only induced IL-4. In contrast, extracts from Agaricus blazei, Grifola frondosa, Morchella esculenta, Pholiota nameko, Pleurotus citrinopileatus, and Pleurotus eryngii induced only IFN-γ production. In particular, the extract from P. eryngii induced high levels of IFN-γ and reduced levels of IL-4. We further investigated the use of a trial immunogen using the P. eryngii extract as a Th1 immunostimulator. An oil-in-water emulsion of the hot-water extract from P. eryngii (the immunomostimulator) and the ovalbumin (OVA) (the antigen) was used as a trial immunogen. This immunogen induced strong OVA-specific IgG2a antibody production in mice compared with the negative controls. In addition, OVA-specific IgG1 antibody levels were lower than those for the negative controls. Marked increases in serum IFN-γ levels and high-level production of IFN-γ in the culture supernatant from the CD4(+) spleen cells in the trial immunogen group mice were observed. Our results suggested that the hot-water extract from P. eryngii induced Th1 immunity by acting as an immunostimulator.

Concepts: Immune system, Antibody, Agaricales, Fungi of Europe, Edible fungi, Fungiculture, Pleurotus eryngii, Pleurotus


Browning is one of the most common postharvest changes in button mushrooms, which often results in economic losses. Phenolic compounds, which are associated with browning, were extracted from the non-bruised and bruised skin tissue of various button mushrooms with a sulphite containing solution and analysed with UHPLC-PDA-MS. In total, 34 phenolic compounds were detected. Only small differences in the total phenolic content between bruising-tolerant and sensitive strains were observed. The contents of γ-L-glutaminyl-4-hydroxybenzene (GHB) and γ-L-glutaminyl-3,4-dihydroxybenzene (GDHB) correlated with bruising-sensitivity, for example a R(2) of 0.85 and 0.98 was found for non-bruised brown strains, respectively. In non-bruised skin tissue of the strains with brown caps, the GHB and GDHB contents in sensitive strains were on average 20 times and 15 times higher, respectively, than in tolerant strains. GHB and GDHB likely participate in the formation of brown coloured GHB-melanin, which seemed the predominant pathway in bruising-related discoloration of button mushrooms.

Concepts: Fungus, Vegetarian cuisine, Basidiomycota, Mushroom, Agaricus bisporus, Agaricales, Agaricus, Agaricus campestris