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Study: Extracts of Polypore Mushroom Mycelia Reduce Viruses in Honey Bees

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  • Study: Extracts of Polypore Mushroom Mycelia Reduce Viruses in Honey Bees


    Extracts of Polypore Mushroom Mycelia Reduce Viruses in Honey Bees

    Paul E. Stamets, Nicholas L. Naeger, Jay D. Evans, Jennifer O. Han, Brandon K. Hopkins, Dawn Lopez, Henry M. Moershel, Regan Nally, David Sumerlin, Alex W. Taylor, Lori M. Carris & Walter S. Sheppard

    Scientific Reportsvolume 8, Article number: 13936 (2018) | Download Citation

    Waves of highly infectious viruses sweeping through global honey bee populations have contributed to recent declines in honey bee health. Bees have been observed foraging on mushroom mycelium, suggesting that they may be deriving medicinal or nutritional value from fungi. Fungi are known to produce a wide array of chemicals with antimicrobial activity, including compounds active against bacteria, other fungi, or viruses. We tested extracts from the mycelium of multiple polypore fungal species known to have antiviral properties. Extracts from amadou (Fomes) and reishi (Ganoderma) fungi reduced the levels of honey bee deformed wing virus (DWV) and Lake Sinai virus (LSV) in a dose-dependent manner. In field trials, colonies fed Ganoderma resinaceum extract exhibited a 79-fold reduction in DWV and a 45,000-fold reduction in LSV compared to control colonies. These findings indicate honey bees may gain health benefits from fungi and their antimicrobial compounds...

  • #2

    How the mushroom dream of a ?long-haired hippie? could help save the world?s bees
    Originally published October 4, 2018 at 6:43 pm
    Updated October 4, 2018 at 8:41 pm

    A study published Thursday details a promising and novel approach to help stop the viruses killing honeybees, which pollinate much of the food we rely on: mushrooms.

    The epiphany that mushrooms could help save the world?s ailing bee colonies struck Paul Stamets while he was in bed.

    ?I love waking dreams,? he said. ?It?s a time when you?re just coming back into consciousness.?

    Years ago, in 1984, Stamets had noticed a ?continuous convoy of bees? traveling from a patch of mushrooms he was growing and his beehives. The bees actually moved wood chips to access his mushroom?s mycelium, the branching fibers of fungus that look like cobwebs.

    ?I could see them sipping on the droplets oozing from the mycelium,? he said. They were after its sugar, he thought...