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Photochem Photobiol Sci. 2008 Feb;7(2):170-82. doi: 10.1039/b713328f. Epub 2008 Jan 24.

Fungi bioluminescence revisited.

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San Francisco State University, Department of Biology, 1600 Holloway Ave., San Francisco, CA 94132, USA.


A review of the research conducted during the past 30 years on the distribution, taxonomy, phylogeny, ecology, physiology and bioluminescence mechanisms of luminescent fungi is presented. We recognize 64 species of bioluminescent fungi belonging to at least three distinct evolutionary lineages, termed Omphalotus, Armillaria and mycenoid. An accounting of their currently accepted names, distributions, citations reporting luminescence and whether their mycelium and/or basidiomes emit light are provided. We address the physiological and ecological aspects of fungal bioluminescence and provide data on the mechanisms responsible for bioluminescence in the fungi.

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