As Mushrooms Evolve to Live With Trees

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edfrank
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As Mushrooms Evolve to Live With Trees

Post by edfrank » Sat Jul 21, 2012 7:12 pm

As Mushrooms Evolve to Live With Trees, They Give Up DNA Associated With Decomposing Cellulose

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 192047.htm
ScienceDaily (July 18, 2012) — Harvard researchers are unlocking the evolutionary secrets of one of the world's most recognizable groups of mushrooms, and to do it, they're using one of the most comprehensive fungal "family trees" ever created....

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amanita
Arguably the most widely-recognized group of mushrooms in the world, Amanita mushrooms have appeared in popular culture ranging from Fantasia to the Super Mario Brothers video games. Though it includes a number of edible species, such as the Amanita caesarea, the group is probably best known for its many toxic species, including the death-cap mushroom.

Armed with their family tree, Pringle and Wolfe were able to determine that Amanita evolution has largely been away from species that help decompose organic material and toward those that live symbiotically on trees and their roots. More interestingly, they found that the transition came at a steep price -- the loss of the genes associated with breaking down cellulose.
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Don
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Re: As Mushrooms Evolve to Live With Trees

Post by Don » Sat Jul 21, 2012 11:37 pm

Ed
Have you read of the role Amanita muscaria played in the times of Russian czars?
Don
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