Split-gill fungi

Split-gill fungi

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Caption: Split-gill fungus (Schizophyllum commune). These are the fruiting bodies of the fungus, which hold the reproductive spores (not seen). The split- gill fungus usually grows on the dead branches of deciduous trees, but it is highly adaptable and can grow on almost any moist surface. Although historically rare in Britain, it is increasingly found growing inside plastic-wrapped silage bales on farms. This adaptation has brought it into contact with humans; several cases of accidental infection with the fungus, which grows on the mucous membranes of the respiratory system, have been reported. The fungus is being investigated for its possible anti-cancer properties.

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