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Schizophyllum commune (Split gill)


The species is grown on dead wood (saprobic) or rarely parasitic on living wood.  Growing alone or found in clusters. It is annual (survives by shrinking or dehydrating and waiting for more moisture) 1. The specimens were collected from Bandodkar College of Science, Thane.




Fruiting body 10-50 mm wide; fan-shaped with wavy margins and appears to be lobbed. The upper surface is hairy, grayish white in color. The under surface is composed of gill-like folds that are split down the middle, whitish to grayish. The fruit body is without a stem with tough, leathery and pallid flesh1.


Culinary value:


The species is edible and widely consumed in Mexico and some tropical countries. However, in US and Europe it is considered as inedible due to difference in taste standards and also may be due to its tough texture. In North-East India, it is a favorite ingredient in Manipuri's Paankam while, in Mizoram it is one of the highest rated edible mushroom in Mizo community2.


Medicinal importance:


  1. 1.Schizophyllum commune extracts had curative properties against bacteria and fungi infections and hence can be used as potential antimicrobial agent3.
  2. 2.Lectin from commune showed mitogenic activity on mouse splenocytes, anti proliferative activity toward tumor cell lines, and inhibitory activity toward HIV-1 reverse transcriptase4.
  3. 3.Schizophyllum commune produces the polysaccharide Schizophyllan which shows considerable anti-cancer activity. It is proved useful for recurrent and inoperable gastric cancer, as well as increasing survival times of patients with head and neck cancers without any side effects5.
  4. 4.Polysaccharides and phenolic compounds present in commune express antioxidant properties. Thus, using this mushroom in the daily diet as sources of natural antioxidants might be beneficial for human health in preventing or reducing oxidative damage6.



Industrial importance:


Polysaccharides and phenolic compounds present in S. commune express antioxidant properties. Oxidation must be controlled in food products to maintain attractive flavors, odors and textures, or a longer shelf life. To prevent this process, food grade antioxidants like extracts of S. commune can play an important role6.


Unique features:


It has more than 28,000 sexes. Individuals of any sex are compatible for mating with all but three of the other sexes2.


Interesting facts:


Lack of information


Commercial products:


Lack of information


Review of patents:


A method is developed where mass production of beta-glucan is achieved from S. commune with a short time frame. And also a composition for external application to get relief from itching and pain caused by dry skin, atopic diseases and bacterial infections is developed7.


Review of publications:


  1. 1.Schizophyllum commune is genetically tactable and a source of enzymes capable of efficient degradation of lignocellulosic biomass. Genome sequencing is carried out for S. commune8.
  2. 2.The long distance gene flow among Caribbean populations of S. commune is studied by selective spore trapping and molecular genotyping methods9.
  3. 3.The physiochemical studies such as effects of temperature, pH, vitamins and carbon source on the vegetative growth of S. commune from Nigeria is studied11.
  4. 4.Schizophyllum commune is studied as a source of bronchopneumonia 12.



Links to more publications:


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