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Slayers, Saviors, Servants and Sex - An Expose of Kingdom Fungi

D Moore 
Springer Verlag  2001  


Softcover  210 pages  ISBN 9780387950983      £34.00


Hardcover  210 pages  ISBN 9780387951010      £58.00
This is a book is aimed at the general reader interested in the world of fungi. The author believes that everyone should know more about fungi. These organisms have killed us, saved us and served us since before written records began. They have been used in making bread, brewing ale, and fermenting wine for millennia. Crops have been at the mercy of fungal diseases since we became farmers, and they still are. Fungal diseases have caused large demographic changes - from the great plague of 'St. Anthony's Fire' of the Middle Ages (caused by a fungal toxin) to the Irish mass migration to the Americas during the famine (caused by a fungal disease of the potato crop). Fungi can also be thanked for antibiotics. However, the book asks, do we fully appreciate the revolution in life style (and life expectancy) that these taken-for-granted treatments permit? Fungi enabled plants (by a mutualistic combination that persists today) to invade the land during the evolution of life on Earth. Higher fungi are almost unique in their ability to decay the chemical components of timber. Without the wood-rotting fungi we would be up to our eyes in dead trees. Fungi give us the opportunity of treating plant diseases and killing specific weeds, as well as being very useful for cleaning up polluted environments and for producing chemicals. Overall this book explains why it is worth while to look again at fungi and appreciate these extraordinary organisms for what they are: a vital component of our lives and of the Earth's ecosystem.

Contents

  • Preamble.
  • Toxins - kill the primates, rule the world. or: don't turn your back on a fungus!
  • Blights, rusts, bunts and mycoses.
  • Decay and degradation, a fungal specialty.
  • Joining forces - fungal co-operative ventures.
  • Fungi in medicine - antibiotics and other pharmaceuticals.
  • Turning the tables. using fungi to control other pests.
  • Let's party!
  • The old kingdom in time and space.
  • Birds do it. bees do it. even educated fleas do it. but why?
  • The cavalry is coming. Fungi to the rescue.
  • Sources.
  • Word games and solutions to word games.

To find similar publications, click on a keyword below:
Autumn 2001 : Springer : antibiotics : beneficial microorganisms : biochemistry : biodegradation : biological control : biological conversion : bioremediation : demography : environmental science : fermentation : games : mycology : mycorrhizae : mycotoxins : oenology : pharmaceuticals : plant pathology : symbiosis : toxicology : weed science : yeast

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