How Temperature Makes Fungi Kill us or Heal us with Dr. Arturo Casadevall and Dr. Radames J. B. Cordero

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How Temperature Makes Fungi Kill us or Heal us with Dr. Arturo Casadevall and Dr. Radames J. B. Cordero

 

When an astroid hit earth and fungi took over, warm blooded mammals were able to survive better than cold blooded amphibians because their higher temperature gave them better resistance to fungal diseases. Since then fungi have been evolving and new fungal diseases, new medicines, and technologies have emerged.

 



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TRANSCRIPT
Alex 0:11 Welcome, welcome. You are listening to the mushroom revival podcast. I'm your host, Alex Dora. And we are absolutely ecstatic about the fantastic, wonderful world of fungi and mushrooms. We bring on guests and experts from all around the globe to geek out with us about this fascinating world of fungi. And so today we have a super spectacular episode. And we are welcoming on Rodimus and Arturo from John Hopkins University. How you guys doing? Unknown Speaker 0:43 Hello, good, Alex. Doing great. So Alex 0:45 what why don't you introduce yourselves and your research? What do you guys up to? Speaker 2 0:51 I'll go first Arturo Castro Laval. I am a professor and department chair at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. And we've been working on fungi for about 30 years. We sit we agree with you, we think that they are remarkably interesting. And we're going to talk a little bit more about that relevance. Speaker 3 1:10 Yes, my name is Ramez Cordero. I am an associate scientist at the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, also at the School of Public Health. And I agree from the our remarkable outstanding organisms and we're happy to be here to talk a little bit more about them. Alex 1:33 And rather than is what is what is your focus on on your your research specifically? Well, Speaker 3 1:40 I work on on melanin, which is mostly I work on my focus is on melanin, which is a pigment, a multifunctional pigment produced by funghi and I study how melanin absorbs radiation and also dissipates heat dissipates energy. I recently worked on a published paper on how on the temperature of funghi and how funghi are are able to maintain colder temperatures than their environment. Alex 2:18 That's incredible. And and these fungi I've heard crazy stories about how melanin is so important for the survival of fungi in really extreme environments. Including, you know, the the the famous honey mushroom Armillaria that creates melanin sheath surrounds mycelium so it can survive outside of trees and the sunlight and then in, in Chernobyl. I think Cryptococcus neoformans and other fungi were found to create melanin cheese to protect against not only protect against these radioactive isotopes, but actually use it for energy. I don't know if that energy consumption is related to the melanin or if it's purely a protective source. Do you know Unknown Speaker 3:13 do you want to? Well, I Speaker 2 3:15 think that the interesting thing is that many if not most of fungi make melanin and next time you're in a store and you buy some mushrooms turn him over. And but and this melanin by the way, the fungi make several types of melanin, but some of them are identical to the one you have in your skin. And I think the fascinating aspect of this has been the realization that this pigment does a lot of things from protecting the fungus against radiation in other in other ways, it also captures sunlight. And it may have a nutritional role in which it can capture some forms of light. And and use them for entertainment and food. Use the energy to make energy. So it's it's the fact that is found in extreme environments such as the mountains in Antarctica, by the way, that's why they are black, because they have a pigment that is with a lickin there is a fungus there and in Chernobyl just gives you a sense of of how organisms are able to use these remarkable compounds. Alex 4:26 And arterra Your, your kind of focus of your research is on you know more of the infectious side of crypto conscious. And what's interesting is I was reading about entomopathogenic fungi or fungi that attack insects and one of the defense mechanisms from the insect is using melanin as a response to kind of fight off the fungi. And I was just also reading that. fungi that produce more melanin are actually more resistant to antifungal drugs. So is it also antifungal as well? Speaker 2 5:07 Well, it's so think about it. Melanin is a protective material. So the fungi often use it to protect themselves as well as capture radiation. But the fascinating thing is that the insects, the insect kingdom uses melanin, as part of their immune system. So when a microbe gets into an insect, the insect often in cases, any melon. So what you have is almost like melanin warts, right? The fungi are using the mountain to protect themselves. And in the insects, ie, the insects, they're using the melanin to control the fungi. Alex 5:46 And so this, this mechanism that fungi uses to stay cooler than the environment around itself was you know, how do I phrase this question? Basically, when when, you know, a major asteroid hit the Earth, many, I don't know how many how long ago, hundreds of millions of years ago, I mean, two years ago, 65 million years ago, 70% of all life on Earth was wiped out. And reptiles got hit more than mammals because they are cold blooded, and were more prone to infectious fungal diseases. And mammals were had a higher survival rate because they had a higher temperature. So it seems like fungi, like it a bit colder. And and they what is what is the limit that they start to die? Is it 30 degrees Celsius was fungi. So So mostly, I'm sorry, that was a very poorly phrased question. Speaker 2 7:00 Yeah, 30 degrees about right 30 degrees Celsius. They like ambient temperatures, right. And they what happens is, as you go into higher temperatures, these get very stressed out and, and we get a tremendous amount of protection against the fungal kingdom from just being war. In fact, if you think about it, people fear viruses, they feel bacteria, they fear parasites like malaria, but people don't walk around saying, I'm afraid of the fungi. I mean, even though they get fungal diseases, like athlete's foot in the nail or so. And the reason for that is that we have this remarkable protection against them. And in fact, fungal diseases was no major problem until the late 20th century, when medicine developed therapies to lower immunity. So for example, transplantation, cancer, chemotherapy, etc, these things were associated with more fungal diseases. And then came the HIV epidemic, which lowered immunity. So fungal diseases become really important at the end of the 20th century part because immunity was inhibited wait. But you began by talking about the cataclysm was 65 million years ago. And one of the things that people need to keep in mind is so whenever the Earth has a bad day, to fungi have a good day. So in the past, where there have been major extinctions, like the Permian, like the what happened after that meteorite hit, think about it, all these forests come down, there is all this biomass. What do you think is going to do well, to fungi, because they degrade the environment. So the idea is, when you drive around, and you look at large animals today, we see large mammals and birds, we don't see large reptiles. How come we didn't have a second reptilian age after the asteroid hit, and the idea is that you had this massive fungal proliferation, and you had some reptiles and survive we have one us today, and you have both but that the mammals had a leg up because they had they were warm, they were able to move around, you know, you want us can move when it gets cold. And, and they were able to, to eat the food stuff or what was left over. So when the skies cleared, and the earth recovered, you had a lot more mammals and reptiles. So then that that led to the great age of mammals. So we are living in. So in a nutshell that we cover everything from mammals coming up to extinction to to why we are so protected against fungi. Alex 9:48 I think you just disproved the conspiracy theory that were run by lizard people. You heard it You heard it here first. disproven it Who knows, maybe you're being paid by them to? No, no. Yes, reptiles are no yeah, they're not. Yeah, they're not a superior race at all for sure. It's all mammals. So we're talking about so many different ways in which melanin is important for actually many different kingdoms of life from, you know, both both fungi and I guess, animals because insects are part of the animal kingdom. But what in what other ways? Are our a's melanin important for fungi? Speaker 2 10:39 Could you take that one run this? Right? So in for funghi? Speaker 3 10:44 Well, we talked about how melanin is important for funghi in terms of protection, right? It protects the fungus against a variety of stressors, both physical factors, like temperature, chemicals, drugs, but also a biotic we're living organisms, right? So, so melanin is is it just protects the fungus when the fungus wants to infect another host. That host has a lot of mechanisms to try to get rid of the fungus. But then you have there the melanin acting as a shield from from all these factors. So protection is a big one. Then we have also that melanin acts as a as a pigment, right? So for animals or organisms and can see right, then melanin could be attractive or, or providing some camo flash. Right. So so that's another one, right visual communication. And then there's another a third one that is actually pretty interesting, which is basically energy capture. Right? So the, you gave an example, there with the Chernobyl experiments, where the experiments suggest indicated that the melanin in this funghi was able to capture some of energy from radiation and translate it and use it for growth and metabolism. There's another example of how melanin absorbs a radiator is involved in energy capture, which is basically heat capturing heat, capturing energy in the form of heat. Right. And, in fact, that was one of my first projects when I joined Hopkins eight years ago, where we basically showed that melanin in funghi, in fact, is it captures heat, it captures it gets warmer, when when he radiated with with sunlight with radiation. So So you said so melanin also provides a mechanism of thermal regulation? Alex 13:07 And do you think it's possible? And do you know of any researchers, including maybe yourselves, that are working on making maybe like a bio solar panel with melanized fungi of capturing this, you know, similar to to an electric solar panel capturing this energy from the sun and transforming it into energy that humans can use? Speaker 3 13:34 Yes, well, we are actually trying to work on something similar. Okay. Cool. So yeah, exactly. So there's this there's thermoelectric effect, right, that we can use and harness to, to basically generate work by basically capturing heat from solar, solar radiation. And melanin could be that that that compound that could capture that that energy and will be the idea and the interesting thing is that is whole promise, because we will be using a natural compound that is not toxic to the environment. I mean, those those solar absorbers are, are often used for these solar technologies are usually toxic to the environment, and then they eventually they will degrade and they will just heat our soils. So that's a that's a promise, basically harness the power of melanin and funghi to to maybe implement implemented in harness and in some of these solar solar technologies that are out there. Alex 14:41 That's crazy. Just in the last week, I was talking to one group that was working with the bacteria that can create electricity from humidity in the atmosphere, which I don't understand yet, but it works and they're a able to, you know, turn on a light bulb with it, which is crazy. And, and another group working and making a bio battery and some part of it is, is fungi and used to store massive amounts of energy in this bio battery. So it seems like, you know bio energies are future as we're moving away from fossil fuels and we're obviously having more technology that requires more energy. So I think this could be huge. And especially because solar panels are pretty toxic for the environment right now, a lot of the materials and if we can replace them with more biomaterials, I think that that could be huge. So that's great work. Speaker 3 15:46 I agree. I agree, Alex. And one of the things that excites me about these ideas about melanin and the potential of Millennium is the sum of these materials that come from natural origin are pretty amazing, they're pretty remarkable, they could actually out compete with synthetic versions out there that are already in the market. You know, one thing about melanin is that it basically captures the entire solar irradiance, which what that means is that you know that the sun, the energy coming from the electromagnetic waves that are being emitted by the sun, some of them gets trapped or, or disperse before they reach the Earth's surface before they recharge your skin. So there's only a portion of the salt, this solar expectrum that reaches your skin. So melanin is able to capture and trap all of that. It's, it's remarkable the ability of melanin, while other type of pigments and absorbers will focus on absorbing a specific region and portion of that of that spectrum, melanin evolved to basically capture the entire spectrum the entire solar irradiance. So I think that that's, that says a lot about how amazing nature is and how much it and the potential for some of these materials. Speaker 2 17:11 Yeah, I think Alex, if you think about our technology, biology has solved a lot of problems a long, long time ago. And we are just at the very beginning, to try to use biology to solve problems, like energy capture and all that. So I think that you know, as the century goes, the you're gonna see a lot more of this. And the good thing about biological materials instead they are, by definition, more eco friendly, that anything that you do, synthetically, with with with, you know, chemicals and minerals. Alex 17:50 And am I right in the assumption that fungi 65 million years ago had less melanin production than fungi today. Speaker 2 17:59 We don't know that we think that melanin is ancient. The reason we think so is because you can find it in all the biological kingdom. So that means that probably the ancestors of everybody made melanin, melanin is a relatively cheap molecule to make. And probably early in evolution, it was made and fun to have uses. And today it is the you know, people are realized, but the squid ink is made out of melanin particles. So you think about camouflage, the squid ink energy capture, basically nature has been using this molecule, which is remarkable properties in many, many ways. And we are just beginning to like scratch the surface and and to learn from this billions of years probably that this molecule has been around us. Alex 18:54 And more on your research, Arturo, I heard there's a lab. I don't know if you've heard of it. It's called Casa de Val lab. It might ring a bell for you but there you are working on an antibody to fungal melanin for the treatment of melanoma. Can you talk about this? Speaker 2 19:21 So this has been a this is very interesting and circuitous story. So it began in we were studying fungal melon, okay. And we want you to make a reagent to study it. So generally, one of the things you can do is make an antibody because they can you can do immuno staining, you can immunogold and this antibody was made to study melon. And then I was working with Catalina that a chihuahua who's a nuclear cheese great in physics. She's wonderful. Yeah. And chemist, and she is in a department or radio to radio, logical department and she was working on radio immunotherapy. And the idea was to combine this. And to make a long story short, this antibody when you link it with a nuclei, something that emits radiation could be used for treatment melanoma, and he was very promising in animal models in went into some clinical testing and it was promising there too. And he continues to be developed and we are we are hopeful that it will be available in the future. But that's an eye that's an example of something that comes out of very basic science. It didn't immediately had any ideas, no intention for using it for therapy. And then, you know, you weren't connected the dots and there were discussions and then it showed it to potential usefulness for solving one of the great medical problems, which is the treatment of malignant melanoma. Alex 20:55 You Yeah, she she said she was working on fungal sunscreen too, which was super cool for astronauts. And yeah, it's so funny that the complete juxtaposition of your work, it sounds it sounds like random as you're like almost rooting for more fungal melanin and Arturo, you're, you're trying to like dissolve it. And you're like, oh, you know, more fungal melanin, creates more infectious disease, right? And, specifically, you know, I've been hearing all these new stories about Cryptococcus neoformans. On it, how it's like the new, quote unquote, COVID, or like, it's the new infectious disease that we should be worrying about. It might just be hype. And, you know, from these these new stories, I know, it's been around for a while, it's not something new. But it, it seems like it's pretty nasty. It takes a while to cure, maybe like a year. If it's, if it's if it's a bad case, and it's a pretty pricey cure as well for the medication. And it can correct me if I'm wrong, he can get into your spinal fluid and your brain, which doesn't sound doesn't sound very pleasant. Can you can you talk about Cryptococcus neoformans, and what it does to the human body. Speaker 2 22:20 So Cryptococcus, your form is Ec yeast, and, and is following in all urban environments, it is often associated with pigeon excreta. And what I want to reassure the readers is the listeners is that we, the overwhelming majority of people are exposed to this and because their immune system can handle it, they don't have to worry about it. However, for people already immune suppress this thing can be a really significant problem. Because in the absence of a strong immune system, if the body has a lot of trouble clearing, so when, in the early days of the AIDS epidemic, when there were no therapies for patients who were HIV infected, there was a lot of cryptical causes. And Cryptococcus is nasty. It has a predilection for the brain. So what it does is it causes meningitis, and if untreated, it's always fatal. But if treated, you know about a good number of people can be cured. Although the problem as you said, Alex is, this is not like two days of antibiotics, and you get better. People have to be treated for many, many months with drugs that have a lot of side effects. So yes, it is a nasty bug. Yes, it is increasing. The medical importance is rising with every year, but the majority of people need to be aware of it, but don't necessarily need to fear. Alex 23:52 And I was I was reading that specifically. In countries like Africa, where there's a higher percentage of HIV, but there's also not there's a couple of different drug therapies, and if I'm not a medical practitioner, and so I might butcher this a little bit, but basically, there's, there's one drug that people can take, I can't remember the name, it's sort of an F, but Exactly, yeah. And that was a bit cheaper. And, you know, I'd looked it up and apparently, you can give it to your pets and I don't even think you need a prescription for it. I just saw you could buy it online. Do it. You okay. Right. But But But yeah, I found that I'm like pet chewy.com You know, you could you could buy it which is interesting. And apparently that's for you know, mild cases and that's that's fine, but that's widely available. But then for more severe cases, there's there's this other drug treatment. Exactly. Which is way more expensive. About you I was reading $10,000 For two weeks therapy. I don't know how accurate that is. But that specific drug protocol is extremely effective for severe cases, but it's not available in Africa as much. And so more people will go and take the first drug we which, Speaker 2 25:21 so the big difference between the two, the one that is Amphotericin B, which is the standard therapy for this has to be given intravenously got there, you know, only half the expensive the drug, but you have the fact that people need to be hospitalized and put on an intravenous set. And also the drug has a lot of side effects. The other drug that was a great advance because it can be taken by mouse, you really just have to basically pop a pill. The problem is that you if you really want to get the best care, you want to be treated first with the Antifa. And for terrorism, hit the fungus really hard. And then you follow up with this connoisseur. And what you're saying is true that in the absence of Amphotericin V, well, the second line will take fluconazole although people are working really hard on making it work better. And finding regimens by which you can work better. Alex 26:19 Yeah, I hear the just just the pill. It doesn't kill the fungus. It just suppresses the fungus. And so it's Speaker 2 26:29 it's known as a bacteria static drug. That means that the, that means that the it doesn't kill what it does is it suppresses the suppresses the replication. Alex 26:42 Got it? And so are you. You know, this has been around for a while we have treatments available. Although right now they're they need improvement. Are you worried that, you know, a super strain will develop? Or we'll find excuse me, we'll find some weird pigeon den somewhere that they, you know, haven't been exposed to humans in 100 years, and they've been developing this super strain it it gets out and and it spreads very, very fast and creates kind of a another epidemic. Is that a worry for you? Do you feel like we have the tools to handle it? It's not that big of a deal. It's kind of overhyped by the media. Speaker 2 27:33 I mean, I think the two things you bring, you know, one of them is the long term threat of crypto cards. And then there is the other threat of other fungal disease. So let's talk about the long term threat of Cryptococcus. I'm not really worried about it becoming contagious, I think that we get infected from the environment. I am worried about drug resistance, because we throw in a lot of drugs around. But there is my biggest worry is not that my biggest worry is that we are protected against a lot of fungi by your temperature, your temperature is enough to keep a lot of them out. But the world is getting warmer, Alex, and what's going to happen when all these fungi that have some ability to cause disease, but they can't quite get to you adapt to a higher temperature. Right. So and that brings the possibility of brand new diseases that none of us have ever seen before. And one example of that might be Candida Oryx, right, as you know, is spreading throughout the world. This disease was not known to medicine. Prior to 2007, it was recovered from somebody's ear, which is a cooler area was called Candida Oris. And then in a couple of years, it emerges in three continents independently. And it's not like somebody took a plane from the continents was South America, South Africa and Indian subcontinent. It's not like somebody took a plane and carry these trains were really different. Question is what's going on here? And there is no good explanation. So one hypothesis is, well, the world is getting warmer. And this strain may have been out there, but not quite able to get it to humans. And then it adapted. And then it became a human pathogen. People when they when people think about climate change, they say, well, but you know, the world has only warmed up maybe a degree and a half. How can that be? What I tell him is what you really need to worry about the number of really hot days. Yeah, because each hot day is a selection event. Think about what's happening right now, with a big heat wave in this house. In the southwest talking about days of 114 degrees. Every organism in that environment is going to make it so if you're if you're going to be selecting for some that are more heat adapted to I worry that there were that there are organisms out there being selected that could be new fungal pathogens that they could suprises. Alex 30:10 And, you know, we're pretty human centric as, as humans, but we, you know, I just did an interview about, I don't know if you've heard of the epidemic for bats going around. Right? Yeah. So I was interviewing researchers studying that. And they said, it's spreading like crazy in North America right now. And it, it has a lot to do with temperature resistance. And you know, that specific fungi does better in colder environments. And when the bats wake up, and and they heat themselves up, and you know, things like that. They build a better resistance to the fungi. But, you know, we we see that in, we're seeing it spread to warmer states here in the US. And it's, you know, it, that fear that you're just talking about other fungi. It, it goes beyond just humans, it goes to bats, it could go to honeybees, it could go to, you know, a whole other things that has massive ripple effects to our ecosystem. That's all interconnected. Right? Speaker 2 31:23 Well, I'm glad you mentioned about us because the bats are our poster child case of, of how temperature protects you. The bats are mammals and gods. So in the summer, they have 37 degrees, and they're resistant to the fungus. But in the in the, in the colder latitudes, the bats don't have food in the winter, the insect there are no insects. So what they do is they hibernate, and then their temperature drops to 10 to 12 degrees. And when that happens, they are susceptible to the fungus, the fungus kills them over the winter. Now, if you were to take those bats and bring them into the laboratory, and feed them, and let their temperature go up, just getting the temperature up can control the fungus. And that's giving you a sense of the tremendous protection that we're getting by just the war. Alex 32:18 And so, how, how exactly does how exactly does fungi make sure it's colder than the environment around it? Speaker 3 32:32 They they evaporate water. They sweat and sort of sort Alex 32:37 of speak. Interesting. Okay. Speaker 3 32:41 Yeah, we recently we recently published a paper about about this process least phenomena? Yes, it turns out that the, when you evaporate water, that surface gets colder, right? The evaporation of water basically consumes heat, right? That's why we call Well, that's what we sweat, right? We sweat when we reach a higher temperature. We put basically water on our surface on our skin. And that water basically evaporates, removing heat from that surface. Right? So in a similar way, that's how funghi are able to, to maintain colder temperatures and their surroundings Alex 33:25 out of this, it's incorporated. Speaker 2 33:27 That's what you call when you come out of the shower. The water that you have in us evaporate, so suddenly it's taking heat out of you. So then your call is innocent mechanism. Alex 33:39 Is it the same process while it's you know excreting enzymes out of the spits and copper on the hyphal tip? Is it excreting enzymes and also water at the same time in that mixture? And then that it's sweating enzymes and and water in the same process? Unknown Speaker 33:58 I don't know. Speaker 3 34:00 Yeah, I don't know. Exactly. But, but we do know that that funghi are very good at secreting, secreting enzymes outside there, there, there's this their sales right in the extracellular environment. And they're also very good at releasing water. They're most you know, they're mostly water. Actually, most of most of the strains of these species are are high have very high water content. So so we don't know if it's the same process. They say they use the same channels or the same proteins or the same mechanisms, but But that's something that we will be there's a question in the table right. So is it is are there specific specific water channels or that are allowing that that water to be evaporated similar to still matters in plants, for instance, which have dedicated water channels to these water. Yep. Alex 35:07 I'm thinking of desert fungi, and not much water in the desert. And it's also very, very hot. So, obviously, you know, obviously, I'm guessing fungi in the desert might secrete more water than other fungi in colder environments. Where are they getting that water in the first place? Speaker 2 35:28 I think they save it right from the from when there is rains and things like that. Interesting. Speaker 3 35:34 And I suspect also that in the desert, the fungal species over there will will I suspect, I suspect that they will be more, they will have evolved mechanisms and to instead of releasing and evaporating water, maybe maintaining water so so Alex 35:55 right camel, camel fungi. Cool. So it's kind of a dual action between melanin and and it's, it's its water cycle, right of of using melanin as kind of a sunscreen for it and helping not absorb, or it will absorb the heat, but not to the actual organism itself. If that makes sense. It keeps it on the outside and potentially use that stored energy for growth that it continued growing. But also, you know, sweating so it can cool down as well. And we're seeing fungi potentially evolve over time to get better at these two things, which is great for biomimicry of making new solutions for humans, but also at the same time, it might be our Achilles heel of creating more infectious disease, because we're getting super strains of fungi that can adapt better to our environment, which they're really good at adapting to pretty much any environment ever. So yeah, it's cool that you both of you can can study both edges of the sword and and see, you know, it really this conversation is, is really kind of the anticipates of, there's no good and bad, it just is. And the more we study fungi, the more we realize that there's no good and bad, it's just, it's just nature. And that's just the way it is. Speaker 2 37:38 I would agree with that. I mean, I think the other way to put it, everything is irrelevant, right? Everything you can find a you know, you can find a listen biology or a double edge. Write that, you know, biology or however often times to find the sweet ground, the sweet middle part in which to make things work. Alex 38:00 So I have a few more questions before I let you guys go. But um, the first is what has been the hardest part of both of your research? Speaker 2 38:13 That's a good question. I'll take that first. I mean, I think I think that one of the hardest things for people who were with the fungi is the fact that what we call medical mycology is relatively ignored. You can look you can look yourself look at a conference in micro microbiology, and look at the topics that are covered. And the fungi are often you know, an extra thought. I mean, you could say that the biggest thing that happened to the fungi was that series The Last of Us All a sudden the the fungi had their 15 minutes of fame, right? They almost had people discovered everybody wanted to talk about them, could this Could this really happen? Could a fungus turn people into a zombie? But the bottom line is that every year the fungal diseases and the fungal problem gets worse not only for humans, but for crops for bats for frogs, and it's just doesn't get a lot of attention. Speaker 3 39:20 Yes, I would agree. I agree with our treasurer on that. And and it is it is exciting to see that it's now getting our attention not only because due to the the concerns and the public health concerns around 5g Right in the in the issues with climate change, which poses a serious, serious problem. But also in the more most optimistic side of things. Also the fact that Frankie can do so many great things. And now I think that we are getting into an age where we're you know, now it's more common. We have a lot of big players and A lot of laboratories developing technologies with funghi, harnessing both their properties, using them as materials. So I think that now hopefully, there will be we're seeing also a lot of interest in the funghi. So I think that that's, that's promising and then good. Right. So by maybe Alex 40:24 you just answered it. Speaker 2 40:26 Yeah, yeah, I there is, there's a lot more attention, but I think things are shifting. Alex 40:33 And maybe, maybe you just answered it, but what has been the most rewarding part of your research? Speaker 2 40:40 The discovery, the the discovery of all these things that we've been talking about, I mean, they, the fungi surprise you over and over again. And, and you know, you can learn from them in ways that you can learn from bacteria, you can learn from viruses, they're very, very complex being and we even in this conversation, we just barely kind of scratched the surface of the fungal world is talking about a few anecdotes, you could say, from a world I can live in Chernobyl reactor can live in the Antarctic, and can cause terrible disease. And for you, relevance, Speaker 3 41:21 yes, I know, I agree. It's, it's very rewarding to, to be in the laboratory and have that, that experiment, and teach you something and knowing something for the first time. And, and that feeling of trying to interpret the results and, and seeing for yourself and understanding a little bit more about the biology and how they work. That I think is very rewarding. It's a great feeling. And I remember, you know, and we have this, this moments don't happen very often. But in the laboratory, but when they happen, they're, they're very exciting. And, yes, I mean, we could we could list many anecdotes of how of some of these, these moments but but in general, that will be the most rewarding is the the results of those experiments, right and knowing, knowing a little bit more about them. Alex 42:20 So an era of that, if you if both of you had unlimited time, money resources team, what, what research would you do? Speaker 2 42:32 Well, I still I will continue to do what I'm doing. Good answer. But I think that if I think that if you had the reason, I think a thorough exploration of the fungal world will be very, very harmful to humanity. fungi make a lot of drugs, statins, antibiotics, and antibiotics and all that. And we know so little about this enormous kingdom. So mapping it, I understand that even trying to get an sense of how many species are there, that I think could be a very, very wise investment for humanity, as we go forward at a very, very challenging time. Speaker 3 43:20 Yeah, I, I would say that I would continue doing the work that I'm doing as well. You know, understanding how funghi regulator temperature, understanding how they can use melanin, to capture energy from their surroundings, seeing how we can use them to create materials that can perhaps even protect astronauts and help us build houses in new worlds. You know, basically continue exploring the potential of funky AI to solve many of the big, big challenges that we face today. I think that that would that would be Yeah. Alex 44:04 And where, where can our listeners follow? along on your feature research, your feature findings feature paper, papers that you publish? What's what's the best resources that they can go to? Speaker 2 44:20 Well, I only made your work and every now and then I tend to put her on Twitter, which is now known as x. I don't know, how are we supposed to change Alex 44:29 last night? Was that sound official? No. Speaker 2 44:33 Yeah, I don't know. Check on x. I think social media we tend to be active within to put out a tip. It's not only what we do, but what we hear from others to try to maintain interest in this remarkable subject. Speaker 3 44:50 Yes, yes. I also try to disseminate the work through LinkedIn and Twitter. So Yeah, that's where I Yeah. Keep amazing. keep them updated. Alex 45:06 Cool. Well thank you both for coming on. And thank you everyone for listening wherever in the world that you're you're tuning in from, and could not make this podcast a reality without you. So thank you, we actually don't have a Patreon or anything that you can donate for listening to the show. But if you want to support, we do have a website mushroom revival.com. We have a bunch of functional mushroom products there from gummies powders, capsules, tinctures you can check out for yourself or friend family. And if you want to win some goodies, we have a giveaway going on. The link is in the bio and you can enter to win. If you want to check out something from our shop, use the code pod treat. And that's only for listeners of this podcast. It's and we have a bunch of free ebooks there free blog posts, all of our show notes all of our podcasts there as well. And you know what would also help is just telling your friends and family if you learn something from this episode, or another episode, just tell someone you're at the supermarket tell you're at the next family gathering, you know, be that weird person talking about mushrooms and hopefully you'll blow someone's mind and you'll get them into mushrooms and you know into nature as a whole. So we can find solutions for our world's biggest problems and form a deeper relationship with nature. So with that, as always much love and may the Force be with you Transcribed by https://otter.ai
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