"Chicken of the woods"?

Colin Davidson cabd2 at biotech.cam.ac.uk
Tue Jun 25 03:33:48 EST 2002

"Mycos" <amanita at shaw.ca> wrote in message
news:ukg7hu0bb9b4p61dimkjpc8h1uqhk3kd8r at 4ax.com...

> Not to worry . There are some molds that can give off spores that are
> toxic and I've heard of people in the industry developing a
> sensitivity to the heavy spore load that they are constantly inhaling,
> but there are no mushroom sized fungi that are anywhere near that
> toxic.

It's not uncommon for people using sporulating fungi like, for example,
Aspergillus sp. to become allergic to the spores after working with the
fungus for a few years. Not uncommon at all. Theoretically, a lab worker
shouldn't be exposed to many spores (due to correct containment and good
aseptic technique), but in reality if you're working with such a fungus it's
quite likely that you'll come into contact with many over a period of time.

On a more industrial scale, oyster mushrooms are reknowned for irritating
people with breathing problems such as asthma, and those cultivating this
mushroom in their homes should perhaps bear in mind the need for adequate

Out in the field, though, and when dealing with individual specimens, I have
never heard a report of problems caused by inhalation of spores from a few

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