Daedaleopsis confragosa: The Ultimate Mushroom Guide
About The Daedaleopsis confragosa Mushroom
Daedaleopsis confragosa is a species of polypore fungus in the family Polyporaceae. A plant pathogen, it causes a white rot of injured hardwoods, especially willows. The fruit bodies are semicircular and tough, have a concentrically zoned brownish upper surface, and measure up to 20 cm (8 in) in diameter. The whitish underside turns gray-brown as the fruit body ages, but bruises pink or red.
The pore surface can develop in odd ways, leading to confusion with round-pored species, or even with "gilled polypores" like Lenzites betulina. To make matters worse, the zones of color on the cap are not always clearly evident, and the pore surface does not always bruise red, especially if you are looking at an older specimen.
This mushroom is found all year and is common in northern temperate woodlands of eastern North America, Europe, and Asia.
Other names: Thin-maze Flat Polypore, Blushing Bracket.
Daedaleopsis confragosa Identification
Saprobic; growing alone or gregariously on decaying hardwood logs and stumps, or rarely from the wounds of living hardwoods; partial to birch, willow, and many other hardwoods, but only rarely on oak; very rarely on conifer wood; summer through winter; widely distributed, but more commonly encountered east of the Rocky Mountains. The fungus produces "a white delignifying decay of the sapwood" (Overholts, p. 122).
5-15 cm; broadly convex to more or less flat; fan-shaped or nearly round in outline; dry; smooth or minutely hairy; pale grayish to brown or reddish-brown; typically with zones of color.
White, becoming dingy brownish in age; typically with elongated, maze-like pores and fairly thin walls between the pores, but sometimes with more or less round pores, or even with the pores elongated so much that they appear like gills; often bruising salmon pink to reddish when handled.
White, or pinkish to brownish; very tough.
Spore Print: White.
Daedaleopsis confragosa Medicinal Uses
The compound 20(29)-lupen-3-one, purified from dried fruit bodies of D. confragosa (as D. tricolor), showed antifungal activities against Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Microsporum gypseum, and antibacterial activities against Escherichia coli, Proteus vulgaris, Pseudomonas pyocyanea, Bacillus subtilis, and Staphylococcus aureus. Also, this compound inhibited lipid-peroxidation by 6.4% at the concentration of 0.706 µM, showing an inhibitory effect similar to the well-known antioxidant α-tocopherol (Kim et al., 2001)
The blushing bracket was one of several mushrooms whose water extract was able to inhibit the activity of the zinc-containing metalloendopeptidases angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) and neutral endopeptidase (NEP). Specifically, the IC50 against ACE was 300 µg (of extract)/ml, and 55 µg/ml against NEP (Melzig et al., 1996). The biochemical activities of these and similar metalloendopeptidases are involved in various physiological functions related to blood pressure regulation and pain suppression, and significant research has gone into finding inhibitors of these therapeutically important enzymes to serve as antihypertensive agents.
Polysaccharides extracted from the mycelial culture of D. confragosa and administered intraperitoneally into white mice at a dosage of 300 mg/kg inhibited the growth of Sarcoma 180 and Ehrlich solid cancers by 90% (Ohtsuka et al., 1973). Later, a crude methanol extract from this species was shown to have cytoxic activity against murine cancer cell line L1210 (lymphocytic leukaemia), with an IC50 of 74.5 µg/ml (Tomasi et al., 2004).
Daedaleopsis confragosa Taxonomy & Etymology
In 1791 the British mycologist James Bolton described this bracket fungus and gave it the binomial name Boletus confragosus. It was the German mycologist Joseph Schröter (1837 - 1894) who transferred this species to the genus Daedaleopsis in 1888, whereupon its scientific name became Daedaleopsis confragosa.
Synonyms of Daedaleopsis confragosa include Boletus confragosus Bolton, Daedalea confragosa (Bolton) Pers., Daedalea rubescens Alb. & Schwein., Trametes rubescens (Alb. & Schwein.) Fr., Trametes confragosa (Bolton) Rabenh., Polyporus confragosus (Bolton) P. Kumm., and Daedalea intermedia Berk.
The generic name Daedaleopsis means 'having the appearance of Daedalea' (which is the genus in which you will find the Oak Polypore, Daedalea quercina; and the specific epithet confragosa means roughly corrugged and refers not to the gill-like pores but to the wrinkled and bumpy upper (infertile) surface.
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