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Fungal culture for wood research

Fungal culture for wood research

G350/0009

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Credit

SINCLAIR STAMMERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY. SINCLAIR STAMMERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY.

Caption

Research assistant examining an 8 day old culture of fungi Geotrichum candidum, growing in a petri dish. The research involves growing numerous fungal species in order to isolate those that produce ligninase, an enzyme capable of degrading lignin. Lignin is a plant strengthening material, highly resistant to chemical decay, which is laid down in the cell walls of the xylem & sclerenchyma. It forms 25-30 percent of wood. Resistance to decay means that disposal of waste products such as saw dust & stubble is problematical. This research is being carried out by the Department of Pure & Applied Biology, Imperial College, London, UK.

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