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Thread: Glow in the dark fungus?

  1. #1 Glow in the dark fungus? 
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    Aug 2005
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    Greetings.

    I am in the Army and stationed at Fort Campbell Kentucky. We recenty spent three days at one of the training areas here on post and when I was walking around at night I found a stump that had what I thought was a patch of white that was reflecting light from something, but when I took a closer look at it it was actually glowing. I started pulling the old bark off the stump and sure enough there was a large mold-like pattern glowing in the dark. I found other, and larger, pieces of decaying wood that were glowing as well.

    Is this really glowing mold, or is there some other process taking place here?


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  3. #2  
    Forum Freshman Sheppard's Avatar
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    Its called bioluminescence, it occurs when the luciferase enzyme and the chemical luciferin react.


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  4. #3  
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    Actually, there are many different kinds of biochemicals in bioluminesences. The luciferin/luciferase is from fireflies. The Aequorin type is from the jellyfish Aequorea. That of Noctiluca, a tropical, Caribbean plankton is different. And that of the fungi and bacteria can be quite different as well. The study of bioluminescence is quite interesting. Much more so that just the firefly system. :wink:
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