Kew Gardens Releases Report on World Fungi

On September 12, 2018 the Kew Royal Botanical Gardens released their first ever report on the state of the world’s fungi.  This report included contributions from authors from around the world, and had sections detailing important advances in fungal genomics, the study of plant fungal interactions, as well as updates on the global conservation status of fungi.  The report contained exciting details about advances in mycology including details on the more than two thousand new species of fungi that were described in 2017.

The report also revealed advances in applied research such as showing fungal species which can be used to produce mycodiesel (figure one).  This advance and others detailed in the report continue to demonstrate the diverse potential of fungi as biofuels and other relevant products. The report also focused on the state of fungal research and production in China, with a large part dedicated to the production of edible fungi such as black morels (figure two). This business continues to expand in China becoming a significant economic resource in the country. In addition to edible mushrooms, China is a significant source of macrofungal diversity in general with new species being frequently described.

 

Figure 1: Daldinia eschscholzii is an endophyte that can breakdown lignocellulose to produce mycodiesel.

Figure 2: A plot of cultivated black morels (Morchella Sextalata) growing in China.

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09.13.18

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