Name: Laricifomes officinalis
Author: (Batsch) Kotl. & Pouzar
Citation: Ceská Mykologie 11 (3): 158 (1957) [MB#299370]
Deprecated Synonyms: Fomitopsis officinalis (Vill.) Bondartsev & Singer, Agarikon, Boletus officinalis Batsch, Boletus officinalis Vill., Polyporus officinalis (Batsch) Fr., Piptoporus officinalis (Batsch) P. Karst., Cladomeris officinalis (Batsch) Quél., Ungulina officinalis (Batsch) Pat., Fomes officinalis (Batsch) Bres., Agaricum officinale (Batsch) Donk, Boletus laricis Rubel, Agaricum officinale Rubel, Boletus purgans J.F. Gmel., Fomes fuscatus Lázaro Ibiza
Status : Type
Remarks specimen : Agaricus sive Fungus Laricis C.B. pin. 375
Pileus firm, at length fragile, ungulate to cylindric, 3-8 X 5-10 X 4-20 em.; surface anoderm, powdery, white or slightly yellow- ish, concentrically sulcate, becoming slightly encrusted, tubercu- lose and rimose; margin obtuse, concolorous; context soft, tough, at length friable, chalk-white or slightly yellowish, very bitter, with the odor of fresh meal, 1-3 em. thick; tubes evenly stratified, concolorous, 5-10 mm. long each season, mouths circular to angular, 3-4 to a mm., edges thin, fragile, white, becoming dis- colored and lacerate, wearing away with age; spores ovoid,
5 X 4p.· Frequent throughout on dead or decayed trunks of fir, red fir,
spruce, hemlock, and pine. This species is much more abundant in Europe and is there used in medicine because of the bitter, resinous substance it contains.
Habitat/range: On live and dead conifers, especially Larix occidentalis, Picea sitchensis, and Pseudotsuga menziesii, causing a brown cubical rot. On Haida Gwaii (Kroeger et al. 2012), and scattered in southern BC from Revelstoke and Bridesville west to southern Vancouver Island (Cowichan Lake and Vic- toria). Widespread throughout western North America.
Basidiomata sessile, perennial, hoof-like becoming vertically elongated or columnar as tube layers accumulate, 40 cm or more tall; taste very bitter; pileus convex to hoof-like when young, up to 20 cm wide; pileus surface initially a paper-thin, glabrous membrane that soon wears away, then chalky white or tan, rimose; context white, chalky, friable, up to 10 cm thick; tubes conspicuously stratified, each layer 3–20 mm deep; pore surface white to beige brown; pores round to angular, 3–5 per millimetre but some up to
1 mm diameter, edges thick, entire, becoming lacerate.
Hyphal system dimitic. Generative hyphae 2.5–7.0 μm diameter with clamp connections; skeletal hyphae rarely branched, 3–6 μm diameter; gloeopler- ous hyphae abundant in context, typically sinuous, infrequently branched, up to 13 μm diameter, contents intensely coloured in stains, such as phloxine or cotton blue; sclerids in the context, apparently disarticulated, swollen hy- phal segments, up to 20 × 9 μm, walls hyaline, thick; basidiospores ellipsoid, 4–5.5 × 3–4 μm.
Notes: The quinine-like taste caused people to attribute antimalarial proper- ties to this fungus; in fact, it is mildly poisonous. Decades ago, the large (up to 1 m tall) cylindrical conks (sometimes called “agarikon”) occurring high on tree trunks were harvested by shooting them off the tree and then sold for their “medicinal” value. Recent laboratory screenings have shown extracts
to have antiviral and antibacterial properties. The basidiomata occur in two forms, hoof-like and columnar. The former is the one usually found on large conifer slash, and the latter is usually seen high up on the trunk of a living tree. The presence of one conk between 6 and 12 m from the ground means that about half of the heartwood has been decayed, and the presence of two (or more) conks means that the entire heartwood has been destroyed.
About 27pieces of tissue, soon to be 30 samples, of tissue that need to be sequenced hoping for this to shed some light on the tooic.
“The genus Fomitopsis is typified with Fomitopsis pinicola but Fomitopsis is not a monophyletic genus (Kim et al., 2005). Therefore, the combination Laricifomes officinalis has to be applied as the oldest legitimate name for Fomitopsis officinalis. About 16 rDNA ITS sequences of Laricifomes officinalis are currently available in public DNA databases (NCBI), but sequence divergences between some of them are significantly higher than 98%, indicating the existence of cryptic or geographically distinct taxa.”
Grienke, U., Zöll, M., Peintner, U., & Rollinger, J. M. (2014). European medicinal polypores–A modern view on traditional uses. Journal of ethnopharmacology.
Created: 2008-08-23 19:10:37 CDT (-0400) by Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
Last modified: 2018-03-28 13:36:33 CDT (-0400) by Chaelthomas (Chaelthomas)
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