fungus kingdom is a goldmine of interesting chemicals. So far
we have exploited only a handful.
Biochemical prospectors will no doubt discover many more. In
their search for new drugs they are now turning to an untapped
fungal source, one that seems very tolerant to microbial diseasethe
Although still controversial, new crop plants will likely be
genetically engineered for resistance to fungi. Meanwhile, the
hunt for new fungal agents that will control specific weeds
and insect pests continues. This work has already uncovered
new information about how fungi cause plant diseases. In the
future it may even lead to remedies for human disease.
Forestry scientists are currently developing ways to apply mycorrhizal
soil fungi to soil, encourage the growth of transplanted and
established trees. Andif other research is successfulwhen
those trees are eventually harvested for pulp, white rot fungi
may be employed in the conversion process, cutting back the
paper industry's reliance on bleach, water, and energy.