Public Description of Phanerochaete chrysosporium Burds.

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Name: Phanerochaete chrysosporium Burds.
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 Draft For 2008/2009 Eol University Species Pages Initiative By Garryn Skurulsky (Private)
 Draft For Polypore Project By Chaelthomas (Private)

Description status: Approved
 (Latest review: 2010-04-12 19:02:56 PDT (-0700) by nathan)

Taxonomic Classification:

Domain: Eukarya
Kingdom: Fungi
Phylum: Basidiomycota
Class: Agaricomycetes
Order: Polyporales
Family: Phanerochaetaceae

General Description:

Phanerochaete chrysosporium is an environmentally friendly white rot fungus that participates in the degradation process of hardwoods. The white fruiting body is very flat, broadly effuse, moist, somewhat attached, with a jagged outline. The hyphal system is monomitic, simple septate, branched, with hyaline crystals and cylindrical cystidia that range from 3-9 µm in diameter. Phanerochaete chrysoporium has smooth basidiocarp usually less than 0.25 µm thick . Basidiospores are less than 8 µm long. Cystidia smooth or with occasional scattered granules. Cystidia mostly over 100 µm long. Phanerochaete chrysosporium displays both homothallic and heterothallic-bipolar sexuality.

This species also often forms a conidial state classified in the genus Chrysosporium.

Diagnostic Description:

Phanerochaete chrysosporium is similar to Phanerochaete magnoliae. P. chrysosporium has wider spores, longer cystidia, smaller basidia, and lacks densely branched hyphae.


Known from temperate zones of North America, Europe, and Iran, but not often collected.


Found primarily on hardwood branches, logs, and wood chips.

Look Alikes:

Phanerocheate chrysosporium is similar to Phanerochaete magnoliae. Characteristics that help distinguish them a part are listed above.


Phanerochaete chrysosporium has a couple characteristics that may assist in biotechnology. Unlike most white rot fungi, P. chrysosporium barely touches the cellulose of wood and can tolerate temperatures reaching about 40 ° C. Research shows that P. chrysosporium may possibly remedy waste products and reduce energy involved in biopulping. The same lignin-degrading enzymes that would assist in a cleaner paper making process also aid in the degradation of toxic wastes, such as PCP’s and PCB’s. Phanerochaete chrysosporium has also been shown to degrade phenolic resin polymers (“plastics”).

See Tom Volk’s page on P. chrysosporium



Bessette, A.E., Bessette, A.R., and Fischer, D.W. Mushrooms of Northeastern North America.(1997). Syracuse, NY. Syracuse University Press, 2002.

Volk, T. (1999).Phanerochaete chrysosporium, a crust fungus important in biotechnology, Tom Volk’s Fungus of the Month for May 1997. Retrieved. Nov 2008 from

Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Fungi
Phylum: Basidiomycota
Class: Agaricomycetes
Order: Corticiales
Family: Corticiaceae
Genus: Phanerochaete

Description authors: Tom Volk, Garryn Skurulsky (Request Authorship Credit)
Description editor: Nathan Wilson

Created: 2008-12-25 17:06:25 PST (-0800) by Tom Volk (TomVolk)
Last modified: 2010-04-12 19:02:56 PDT (-0700) by Nathan Wilson (nathan)
Viewed: 768 times, last viewed: 2019-06-02 23:19:59 PDT (-0700)