Navigation Links
Obscure fungus produces diesel fuel components

A wild fungus has been found to produce a variety of hydrocarbon components of diesel fuel. The harmless, microscopic fungus, known as Gliocladium roseum (NRRL 50073), lives quietly within ulmo trees in the Patagonian rainforest.

Gary Strobel of Montana State University has found that the fungus produces many energy-rich hydrocarbons, and that the particular diesel components produced can be varied by changing the growing medium and environment of the fungus. The fungus even performs under low-oxygen conditions like those found deep underground.

Strobel's discovery suggests that fungi living in ancient plants may have contributed to the natural formation of crude oil, a slow process that occurs when organic matter is subjected to high pressure and heat under layers of rock.

"Time will tell if this microbe can be developed for useful purposes for mankind," said Strobel. He envisions these fungi, or their genetic material, being used in the future to purposefully manufacture hydrocarbons for fuel.

Before that can happen, researchers must figure out how to increase hydrocarbon yields from the fungus and find ways to supply the remaining hydrocarbon components needed for complete diesel fuel.

Strobel is now checking other strains of Gliocladium roseum for hydrocarbon production. The strain originally isolated from the tree produced annulene, a component of rocket fuel.

"Upon storage it diverted hydrocarbon production to simple things like octane and heptane," which are two components of diesel fuel, Strobel said. "As is the usual case in biology, if one microorganism can do nifty biochemical tricks, so can others."

"Dr. Strobel's research on a microbial route from biomass to hydrocarbon-based fuels is resulting in very exciting findings," said Bruce Hamilton, program director in the National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Systems, which funded the research. "This is a promising area of biofuels research, and it is wonderful to see his work move so rapidly into peer-reviewed, published literature."


Contact: Josh Chamot
National Science Foundation

Related biology news :

1. Fungus genome yielding answers to protect grains, people and animals
2. Scientists complete genome sequence of fungus responsible for dandruff, skin disorders
3. Scientists find missing evolutionary link using tiny fungus crystal
4. Evolution of the sexes: What a fungus can tell us
5. Killer fungus spells disaster for wheat
6. Smithsonians National Museum of Natural History reveals ants as fungus farmers
7. Lean and mean biomass-degrading fungus reveals capabilities for improved biofuel production
8. Turning fungus into fuel
9. Tomato stands firm in face of fungus
10. Tree-killing fungus officially named by scientists
11. Novel fungus helps beetles to digest hard wood
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/11/2015)... MedNet Solutions , an innovative SaaS-based eClinical technology company that ... announce that it will be a Sponsor of the ... held November 17-19 in Hamburg , Germany.  ... iMedNet , MedNet,s easy-to-use, proven and affordable eClinical ... able to deliver time and cost savings of up to ...
(Date:11/10/2015)... , Nov. 10, 2015 ... biometrics that helps to identify and verify the ... is considered as the secure and accurate method ... of a particular individual because each individual,s signature ... results especially when dynamic signature of an individual ...
(Date:11/9/2015)... , Nov. 9, 2015  Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: ... today announced broader entry into the automotive market with ... match the pace of consumer electronics human interface innovation. ... are ideal for the automotive industry and will be ... Europe , Japan ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... ALEXANDRIA, Va. , Dec. 1, 2015 ... provides senior debt to life sciences and healthcare services ... senior secured term loan with MDRejuvena, Inc. ("the Company"). ... commercialization and continued development of the Company,s Rejuvaphyl™ and ... --> Rejuvaphyl is the MDRejuvena brand of high ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... Park Systems ... an add-on scanning ion conductance microscopy module to Park NX10 that is the ... , Park SICM benefits virtually all materials characterization that require measurements in liquid ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... , Dec. 1, 2015 Cepheid (Nasdaq: ... its participation at the Piper Jaffray Healthcare Conference in ... morning, the Company is reaffirming its outlook for the ... 2016, in addition to discussing longer term business model ... Chief Executive Officer.  "We continue to be the fastest ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... 2015 ) ... U.K. Virology and Bacteriology Testing Market: Sales ... Supplier Shares by Test, Innovative Technologies, Competitive ... --> ) has announced ... and Bacteriology Testing Market: Sales and Volume ...
Breaking Biology Technology: