Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg

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Natural products from fungi

Natural products from hypogeous fungi

Hypogeous fungi are an important part of terrestrial ecosystems. All known species form specific ectomycorrhizal relationships with various plants, ranging from grasses to trees. The whole life cycle of the fruiting bodies takes place beneath the soil surface. This special habitat comes with different problems to solve. The fruiting bodies must protect themselves against molds, bacterial attacks and premature consumption by animals. However, once the spores are mature, the fungi must find ways to distribute the spores.

Our first aim is the chemical profiling of the hypogeous fungi, regarding both the volatile and the non-volatile compounds they produce. In addition, extracts of the fruiting bodies will be tested in various assays for bioactivity.

Katrin Gilbert works on this project as part of her Masters thesis.


  • Prof. Björn Junker, Institut für Pharmazie, MLU Halle-Wittenberg
  • Christian Gold
  • Gunnar Hensel

Additional samples were collected by Peter Reil, Doris Karwarth, Norbert Arnold, N.N.