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Special Issue "Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Natural Products Chemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. George Zervakis
Website
Guest Editor
Agricultural University of Athens, Laboratory of General and Agricultural Microbiology, Iera Odos 75, 11855 Athens, Greece
Interests: diversity; ecology and molecular phylogeny of fungi with emphasis on basidiomycetes; mushroom cultivation; biodegradation of lignocellulosics; valorization of agro-industrial wastes; fungal biomass and bioactive compounds

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The environmentally acceptable disposal of agro-industrial wastes and agricultural/forestry by-products constitutes a major scientific challenge, especially when their chemical properties, recalcitrance, and abundance are taken into account. The use of mushrooms, which grow in nature as wood or litter decomposers and excrete nonspecific oxidative enzymes to degrade lignocellulosics, seems to offer solutions that could be widely and readily applied for the biotransformation of such materials. In addition, these organisms exhibit efficient bioconversion of various types of plant residues to edible/medicinal biomass and to a wide range of value-added products. This Special Issue aims to attract original research article contributions highlighting the versatile roles of mushrooms in the context of novel and efficient processes developed for the biotreatment of agro-industrial wastes and agricultural/forestry residues, and of their outcome, e.g., detoxification of pollutants, generation of biologically active compounds, and/or production of food/feed with enhanced properties. Submissions are welcome in the form of original research papers or short reviews providing new insights into the aforementioned fields.

Prof. George Zervakis
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Waste valorization
  • Biodegradation
  • Edible/medicinal mushrooms
  • Solid-state fermentation
  • White-rot fungi
  • Mushroom cultivation
  • Detoxification
  • High-added value compounds

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Degradative Ability of Mushrooms Cultivated on Corn Silage Digestate
Molecules 2020, 25(13), 3020; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25133020 - 01 Jul 2020
Abstract
The current management practice of digestate from biogas plants involves its use for land application as a fertilizer. Nevertheless, the inadequate handling of digestate may cause environmental risks due to losses of ammonia, methane and nitrous oxide. Therefore, the key goals of digestate [...] Read more.
The current management practice of digestate from biogas plants involves its use for land application as a fertilizer. Nevertheless, the inadequate handling of digestate may cause environmental risks due to losses of ammonia, methane and nitrous oxide. Therefore, the key goals of digestate management are to maximize its value by developing new digestate products, reducing its dependency on soil application and the consequent air pollution. The high nitrogen and lignin content in solid digestate make it a suitable substrate for edible and medicinal mushroom cultivation. To this aim, the mycelial growth rate and degradation capacity of the lignocellulosic component from corn silage digestate, undigested wheat straw and their mixture were investigated on Cyclocybe aegerita, Coprinus comatus, Morchella importuna, Pleurotus cornucopiae and Pleurotus ostreatus. The structural modification of the substrates was performed by using attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy. Preliminary in vitro results demonstrated the ability of P. ostreatus, P. cornucopiae and M. importuna to grow and decay hemicellulose and lignin of digestate. Cultivation trials were carried out on C. aegerita, P. cornucopiae and P. ostreatus. Pleurotus ostreatus showed the highest biological efficiency and fruiting body production in the presence of the digestate; moreover, P. ostreatus and P. cornucopiae were able to degrade the lignin. These results provide attractive perspectives both for more sustainable digestate management and for the improvement of mushroom cultivation efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles)
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of Rich in Β-Glucans Edible Mushrooms on Aging Gut Microbiota Characteristics: An In Vitro Study
Molecules 2020, 25(12), 2806; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25122806 - 18 Jun 2020
Abstract
Alterations of gut microbiota are evident during the aging process. Prebiotics may restore the gut microbial balance, with β-glucans emerging as prebiotic candidates. This study aimed to investigate the impact of edible mushrooms rich in β-glucans on the gut microbiota composition and metabolites [...] Read more.
Alterations of gut microbiota are evident during the aging process. Prebiotics may restore the gut microbial balance, with β-glucans emerging as prebiotic candidates. This study aimed to investigate the impact of edible mushrooms rich in β-glucans on the gut microbiota composition and metabolites by using in vitro static batch culture fermentations and fecal inocula from elderly donors (n = 8). Pleurotus ostreatus, P. eryngii, Hericium erinaceus and Cyclocybe cylindracea mushrooms derived from various substrates were examined. Gut microbiota composition (quantitative PCR (qPCR)) and short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs; gas chromatography (GC)) were determined during the 24-h fermentation. P. eryngii induced a strong lactogenic effect, while P. ostreatus and C. cylindracea induced a significant bifidogenic effect (p for all <0.05). Furthermore, P. eryngii produced on wheat straw and the prebiotic inulin had comparable Prebiotic Indexes, while P. eryngii produced on wheat straw/grape marc significantly increased the levels of tested butyrate producers. P. ostreatus, P. eryngii and C. cylindracea had similar trends in SCFA profile; H. erinaceus mushrooms were more diverse, especially in the production of propionate, butyrate and branched SCFAs. In conclusion, mushrooms rich in β-glucans may exert beneficial in vitro effects in gut microbiota and/or SCFAs production in elderly subjects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles)
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Open AccessArticle
Crosslinked Enzyme Aggregates (CLEAs) of Laccases from Pleurotus citrinopileatus Induced in Olive Oil Mill Wastewater (OOMW)
Molecules 2020, 25(9), 2221; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25092221 - 08 May 2020
Abstract
The enzymatic factory of ligninolytic fungi has proven to be a powerful tool in applications regarding the degradation of various types of pollutants. The degradative potential of fungi is mainly due to the production of different types of oxidases, of which laccases is [...] Read more.
The enzymatic factory of ligninolytic fungi has proven to be a powerful tool in applications regarding the degradation of various types of pollutants. The degradative potential of fungi is mainly due to the production of different types of oxidases, of which laccases is one of the most prominent enzymatic activities. In the present work, crude laccases from the supernatant of Pleurotus citrinopileatus cultures grown in olive oil mill wastewater (OOMW) were immobilized in crosslinked enzyme aggregates (CLEAs), aiming at the development of biocatalysts suitable for the enzymatic treatment of OOMW. The preparation of laccase CLEAs was optimized, resulting in a maximum of 72% residual activity. The resulting CLEAs were shown to be more stable in the presence of solvents and at elevated temperatures compared to the soluble laccase preparation. The removal of the phenolic component of OOMW catalyzed by laccase-CLEAs exceeded 35%, while they were found to retain their activity for at least three cycles of repetitive use. The described CLEAs can be applied for the pretreatment of OOMW, prior to its use for valorization processes, and thus, facilitate its complete biodegradation towards a consolidated process in the context of circular economy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Elemental Content in Pleurotus ostreatus and Cyclocybe cylindracea Mushrooms: Correlations with Concentrations in Cultivation Substrates and Effects on the Production Process
Molecules 2020, 25(9), 2179; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25092179 - 07 May 2020
Abstract
Few data exist about the effect of substrates’ elemental content on the respective concentrations in cultivated mushrooms, on the degradation of lignocellulosics or on production parameters. Sixteen elements (14 metals and 2 metalloids) were measured by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) in [...] Read more.
Few data exist about the effect of substrates’ elemental content on the respective concentrations in cultivated mushrooms, on the degradation of lignocellulosics or on production parameters. Sixteen elements (14 metals and 2 metalloids) were measured by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) in Pleurotus ostreatus and Cyclocybe cylindracea mushrooms, and in their seven cultivation substrates composed of various plant-based residues. Results revealed a high variability in elemental concentration among substrates which generally led to significant differences in the respective mushroom contents. High bioconcentration factors (BCFs) were noted for Cd, Cu, Mg and Zn for both species in all substrates. BCF of each element was variously affected by substrates’ pH, crude composition, and P and K content. Significant positive correlations were demonstrated for Cu, Fe, Mn and Li concentrations vs. a decrease of cellulose and hemicellulose in P. ostreatus substrates, and vs. mushrooms’ biological efficiency. In the case of C. cylindracea, Be, Mg and Mn concentrations were positively correlated with the decrease of hemicellulose in substrates, while a significant positive correlation was also recorded vs. mushroom productivity. Finally, it was found that 15% to 35% of the daily dietary needs in Mg, Se and Zn could be covered by mushroom consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Critical Factors Involved in Primordia Building in Agaricus bisporus: A Review
Molecules 2020, 25(13), 2984; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25132984 - 29 Jun 2020
Abstract
The button mushroom Agaricus bisporus is an economically important crop worldwide. Many aspects of its cultivation are well known, except for the precise biological triggers for its fructification. By and large, for most basidiomycete species, nutrient availability, light and a drop in temperature [...] Read more.
The button mushroom Agaricus bisporus is an economically important crop worldwide. Many aspects of its cultivation are well known, except for the precise biological triggers for its fructification. By and large, for most basidiomycete species, nutrient availability, light and a drop in temperature are critical factors for fructification. A. bisporus deviates from this pattern in the sense that it does not require light for fructification. Furthermore its fructification seems to be inhibited by a self-generated factor which needs to be removed by microorganisms in order to initiate fruiting. This review explores what is known about the morphogenesis of fruiting initiation in A. bisporus, the microflora, the self-inhibitors for fruiting initiation and transcription factors involved. This information is subsequently contrasted with an overall model of the regulatory system involved in the initiation of the formation of primordia in basidiomycetes. The comparison reveals a number of the blank spots in our understanding of the fruiting process in A. bisporus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles)
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Open AccessReview
Cultivation of Mushrooms and Their Lignocellulolytic Enzyme Production Through the Utilization of Agro-Industrial Waste
Molecules 2020, 25(12), 2811; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25122811 - 18 Jun 2020
Abstract
A large amount of agro-industrial waste is produced worldwide in various agricultural sectors and by different food industries. The disposal and burning of this waste have created major global environmental problems. Agro-industrial waste mainly consists of cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin, all of which [...] Read more.
A large amount of agro-industrial waste is produced worldwide in various agricultural sectors and by different food industries. The disposal and burning of this waste have created major global environmental problems. Agro-industrial waste mainly consists of cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin, all of which are collectively defined as lignocellulosic materials. This waste can serve as a suitable substrate in the solid-state fermentation process involving mushrooms. Mushrooms degrade lignocellulosic substrates through lignocellulosic enzyme production and utilize the degraded products to produce their fruiting bodies. Therefore, mushroom cultivation can be considered a prominent biotechnological process for the reduction and valorization of agro-industrial waste. Such waste is generated as a result of the eco-friendly conversion of low-value by-products into new resources that can be used to produce value-added products. Here, we have produced a brief review of the current findings through an overview of recently published literature. This overview has focused on the use of agro-industrial waste as a growth substrate for mushroom cultivation and lignocellulolytic enzyme production. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles)
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Open AccessReview
Lectins from the Edible Mushroom Agaricus bisporus and Their Therapeutic Potentials
Molecules 2020, 25(10), 2368; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25102368 - 20 May 2020
Abstract
The mushroom Agaricus bisporus secretes biologically active compounds and proteins with benefits for human health. Most reported proteins from A. bisporus are tyrosinases and lectins. Lectins are of therapeutic or pharmaceutical interest. To date, only limited information is available on A. bisporus lectins [...] Read more.
The mushroom Agaricus bisporus secretes biologically active compounds and proteins with benefits for human health. Most reported proteins from A. bisporus are tyrosinases and lectins. Lectins are of therapeutic or pharmaceutical interest. To date, only limited information is available on A. bisporus lectins and lectin-like proteins. No therapeutic products derived from A. bisporus lectin (ABL) are available on the market despite its extensive exploration. Recently, A. bisporus mannose-binding protein (Abmb) was discovered. Its discovery enriches the information and increases the interest in proteins with therapeutic potential from this mushroom. Furthermore, the A. bisporus genome reveals the possible occurrence of other lectins in this mushroom that may also have therapeutic potential. Most of these putative lectins belong to the same lectin groups as ABL and Abmb. Their relationship is discussed. Particular attention is addressed to ABL and Abmb, which have been explored for their potential in medicinal or pharmaceutical applications. ABL and Abmb have anti-proliferative activities toward cancer cells and a stimulatory effect on the immune system. Possible scenarios for their use in therapy and modification are also presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mushrooms:The Versatile Roles)
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