Fungus News -- ScienceDaily All about the fungus kingdom. From beneficial soil fungus to fungal infections, read the current research news on fungus here.

  • Clues to the Innate Drug Resistance of a Cocoa-Fermenting Pathogen
    on October 16, 2017 at 6:48 pm

    At first glance, the yeast Candida krusei seems as innocuous as microbes come: it’s used for fermenting cocoa beans and gives chocolate its pleasant aroma. But it’s increasingly being found as a pathogen in immunocompromised patients — and C. krusei infections aren’t always easy to cure. […]

  • Gutters teem with inconspicuous life
    on October 13, 2017 at 5:22 pm

    Scientists have shown that Parisian street gutters are oases of microscopic life, home to microalgae, fungi, sponges, and mollusks. Grouped into communities, these microorganisms may help clean rainwater and urban waste by decomposing solid debris and pollutants. A deeper understanding of the role and composition of these communities could help elucidate the services rendered by gutter ecosystems. The researchers' findings are the first to reveal the unsuspected biodiversity of microscopic life in Paris city streets. […]

  • Gut fungi could play a role in obesity epidemic
    on October 11, 2017 at 5:16 pm

    A high-fat diet changes fungi in the gut and may play a role in the development of obesity, according to a new study. While gut microbes have previously been implicated in the development of obesity, this study shows that fungi may also play a role. […]

  • A step towards a new drug to treat fungal infections that kill 1.6 million people annually
    on October 10, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    Scientists are a step closer to developing a drug to treat life-threatening fungal infections that cause more than 1.6 million deaths annually. […]

  • A tubular structure to stop cell growth
    on October 4, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    TORC1 is an enzyme complex that controls the normal growth of our cells; but, when too active, it can promote diseases such as cancer. A new study describes how sugar regulates the activity of TORC1, through a surprising mechanism. In the absence of sugar, TORC1s assemble into a tubular structure, rendering them inactive and thus cell growth stops. […]

  • Antifungals and probiotics may play a key role in the development of treatment for Crohn's disease
    on October 4, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    Scientists have determined that fungus may play a key role in chronic intestinal inflammation disorders. They found that patients with Crohn's disease tend to have much higher levels of the fungus Candida tropicalis compared to their healthy family members. A new review looks at these findings and provides insights into potential new therapeutic approaches using antifungals and probiotics in the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) such as Crohn's disease (CD). […]

  • Plants become more tolerant when living in symbiosis with fungi
    on October 3, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    By developing a symbiotic relationship with fungi, plants not only become more tolerant to diseases but can also help contribute to more sustainable agricultural practices, report scientists. […]

  • Tropical diversity takes root in relationships between fungi and seeds
    on October 2, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    Scientists in Panama exposed a key to understanding tropical tree diversity by studying how fungi interact with seeds that linger in the ground. Despite a smorgasbord of species available to choose from, tropical fungi and seeds are picky about associating with one another. Early pairings with a particular fungus may influence whether a seed survives and also may help explain how tropical forests remain so diverse. […]

  • Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities exposed with new DNA sequencing approach
    on September 29, 2017 at 3:29 pm

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal systems play crucial roles in their environment, affecting the plants that can grow there and the nutrients in the soils. Researchers have developed a new DNA sequencing technique using barcoded primers that is capable of detecting rare fungal species in a community, paving the way for future insights into how they might vary in response to environmental changes. […]

  • Hunt is over for one of the 'top 50 most-wanted fungi'
    on September 28, 2017 at 7:27 pm

    In a step toward bridging the gap between fungal taxonomy and molecular ecology, scientists have characterized a sample of "mystery" fungus collected in North Carolina and found its home in the fungal tree of life. […]

  • Continental controls needed to maintain fightback against tree diseases
    on September 28, 2017 at 6:21 pm

    Tighter controls on timber and plant movements into Europe are necessary to prevent further disastrous effects of plant diseases, a new study of the ash-dieback pathogen advises. […]

  • Emerging infectious disease threatens Darwin’s frog with extinction
    on September 27, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    Iconic species likely to be wiped-out by amphibian fungus, despite lack of obvious short-term evidence. […]

  • Purple plant is on the defensive
    on September 27, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    While lavender has long been known for its strong scent and soothing oils, a researcher is exploring the plant's ability to create natural pesticides. […]

  • 'Hypermutators' drive pathogenic fungi to evolve more rapidly
    on September 26, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    For nearly two decades, a rare but potentially deadly fungus called Cryptococcus deuterogattii has gained a foothold in the Pacific Northwest and Vancouver Island. Researchers recently showed that lineages of the fungal pathogen Cryptococcus deuterogattii house a specific mutation in their DNA that increases their mutation rate. These hypermutators, as they are called, rapidly develop resistance to the antifungal drugs FK506 and rapamycin. […]

  • Artificial orchid cultivation kit
    on September 22, 2017 at 1:09 pm

    Orchids are loved by gardeners around the world but are notoriously difficult to cultivate. Researchers have developed a new orchid cultivation kit and have succeeded in complete artificial cultivation of an autonomous orchid. Since this kit can be made cheaply, it can broaden the opportunities for orchid cultivation in general households. It is also expected to be useful in preserving the genetic diversity of orchidaceous plants, many of which are in danger of extinction. […]

  • Breaking legume's crop wild relative barrier
    on September 20, 2017 at 1:59 pm

    In a new study, scientists report significant strides in transferring disease- and stress-resistance traits from wild relatives of several legumes to their domesticated varieties. […]

  • 'Mysterious' ancient creature was definitely an animal, research confirms
    on September 14, 2017 at 7:22 pm

    It lived well over 550 million years ago, is known only through fossils and has variously been described as looking a bit like a jellyfish, a worm, a fungus and lichen. But was the 'mysterious' Dickinsonia an animal, or was it something else? A new study provides strong proof that Dickinsonia was an animal. […]

  • Storming the cellular barricades to fight fungi
    on September 12, 2017 at 5:48 pm

    A new class of small molecules has been developed that attack fungal infections by clinging to the cell wall of harmful fungi and recruiting a swarm of antibodies to join the fight. […]

  • Fungal infections reduce frogs’ tolerance of heat
    on August 31, 2017 at 10:05 pm

    Fungal diseases are increasing in animals, which might have serious consequences for wildlife living in a hotter world, said a scientist. A new study shows that fungal infections reduced the heat tolerance of frogs by up to 4 degrees Celsius. […]

  • Fungal spore 'death clouds' key in gypsy moth fight
    on August 30, 2017 at 4:49 pm

    A fungus known to decimate populations of gypsy moths creates 'death clouds' of spores that can travel more than 40 miles to potentially infect populations of invasive moths, according to a new study. […]

  • Soybean rust develops 'rolling' epidemics as spores travel north
    on August 30, 2017 at 3:47 pm

    Although Midwestern soybean growers have yet to experience the brunt of soybean rust, growers in the southern United States are very familiar with the disease. Every year, the fungus slowly moves northward from its winter home in southern Florida and the Gulf Coast states, and eventually reaches Illinois soybean fields -- often just before harvest. […]

  • Magic enzymes in 'magic' mushrooms analyzed
    on August 25, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    Little fungi pack a punch: 'Magic mushrooms' of the Psilocybe species produce psychoactive compounds that alter perception when ingested. Recently, the effects on the neuronal system caused by their ingredient psilocybin have attracted the interest of pharmacologists. Scientists have now identified four of the enzymes responsible for the biosynthesis of psilocybin. Researchers describe the biosynthetic pathway and introduce a synthetic route that could form the basis of biotechnological production. […]

  • Peroxisomes identified as 'fighters' in the battle against bacterial infections
    on August 17, 2017 at 4:21 pm

    Peroxisomes are required for cells in the innate immune response to bacteria and fungi. Now scientists have found that peroxisomes are necessary for proper functioning of the innate immune system, the body's first line of defense against microorganisms. […]

  • New way to prevent a deadly fungal infection spreading to the brain
    on August 16, 2017 at 6:53 pm

    Scientists have discovered a way to stop a deadly fungus from ‘hijacking’ the body’s immune system and spreading to the brain. […]

  • Adding silicon to soil to strengthen plant defenses
    on August 15, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    Researchers have examined the addition of silicon to the soil in which plants are grown to help strengthen plants against potential predators. […]

  • Scientists map sex chromosome evolution in pathogenic fungi
    on August 11, 2017 at 8:25 pm

    Researchers recently mapped the evolutionary turning point that transformed the pathogenic Cryptococcus fungus from an organism with thousands of sexes to only two. They found that during evolution, a reshuffling of DNA known as translocation brought together separate chunks of sex-determining genes onto a single chromosome, essentially mimicking the human X or Y chromosome. Surprisingly, these translocations occurred at the chromosome's centromeres, regions so dense that they were once thought to suppress recombination. […]

  • Deadly fungus affecting hibernating bats could spread during summer
    on August 1, 2017 at 6:42 pm

    The cold-loving fungus (Pseudogymnoascus destructans, or Pd) that causes white-nose syndrome, a disease that has killed millions of North American bats during hibernation, could also spread in summer months. Bats and humans visiting contaminated caves and mines can inadvertently contribute to the spread of the fungus, according to a recently published study. […]

  • Diagnosing and treating invasive fungal infections
    on August 1, 2017 at 1:43 pm

    Thousands of patients suffering from invasive fungal infections in intensive-care units or after organ transplantation will benefit from the latest insights into diagnostic and therapeutic interventions. […]

  • Fungal spores harness physics to launch themselves
    on July 26, 2017 at 12:41 am

    More than a century ago, Reginald Buller discovered that a spherical drop of water that forms close to a spore is crucial to the spore's dispersal. Now, using an ink jet printer and high speed cameras, researchers have uncovered the detailed mechanics of the way fungal spores have evolved to harness the power of merging water droplets to launch in a uniform manner. […]

  • Symbiosis: Butter for my honey
    on July 25, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    Textbooks tell us that, in arbuscular mycorrhizal symbioses, the host plant supplies its fungal symbionts solely with sugars, in return for inorganic nutrients. New findings now show that lipids are also on the menu. […]