What are the difference between cultivated mushrooms and wild mushrooms?


Mushrooms are known, used, and cultivated for their nutritional and medicinal values. But are there differences between wild mushrooms and cultivated mushrooms? And if so, which once?

The first difference can be found in their different nutritional profiles.

A study found that wild mushrooms provide less energy/calories than cultivated mushrooms as they contain higher contents of protein and lower fat concentrations. At the same time, cultivated mushrooms seem to have higher concentration of sugars.

When it comes to fatty acids, the wild mushrooms appear to contain lower values of monounsaturated fatty acids but also higher contents of polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Fatty acids are divided into saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fatty acids. Saturated means that all bonds are connected to a hydrogen atom.

Source: [2]

Example: Stearic acid

Monounsaturated means that there is one double bond.

Source: [3]

Example: Oleic acid

Whereas polyunsaturated means there is more than one double bond.

Source: [4]

Examples: Linoleic acid

Different studies could show that these three types of fatty acids are likely to have an influence on your health. Indicating that saturated fatty acids are unhealthy while monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids are considered healthy.

But it all depends on the amount of and ratio between the three.

Other studies could show that mushrooms contain many fibers, vitamins, minerals, and all nine essential amino acids.

The second difference can be found in their enzyme activities.

White-rot fungi (Basidiomycetes) produce various extracellular enzymes, such as laccase (Lac), manganese peroxidase (MnP) and lignin peroxidase (LiP).

Source: [6]

Laccase belongs to the family of multicopper that catalyzes the oxidation of various aromatic substances. The catalyzation of oxidation of various aromatic substances is used to identify Laccase-producing mushrooms.

The following diagram shows a plate assay for laccase production. Here, ABTS is used for measuring Laccase. The activity is indicated by a green color.

If we compare the commercial with the wild mushroom, we see that the commercial mushrooms produced more Laccase and less peroxidase then the wild mushroom.

Source: [7]

Manganese peroxidase is one of the important enzymes of fungi. It oxidizes Mn2+ to Mn3+, which may attack phenolic structures in lignin as long as it is stabilized by suitable metal chelators secreted by fungi.

Source: [6]

The oxidization process is used to identify manganese peroxidase-producing mushrooms.

Lignin peroxidase belongs to the family of oxidoreductases. It is a strong oxidant and is non-specific with a substrate. It can degrade both structures of phenolic aromatic and non-phenolic aromatic compounds. The activity can be analyzed by using a UV spectrometer.

In the graph, the reddish-brown color comes from guaiacol, which is used for the detection of peroxidase.

With these three enzymes, white-rot fungi can decompose the three compounds of lignocellulosic materials – cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin.

Source: [6]

Mushroom species are most frequently reported as Laccase and manganese peroxidase producers and least frequently reported as lignin peroxidase producers.

Source: [7]

For the wild mushrooms, a wide range of enzyme activity could be found.

For Laccase ranging from 2 to 942 U/I.

For Manganese peroxidase ranging from 24 to 79 U/I.

And for Lignin peroxidase ranging from 3 to 7 U/I.

Whereas cultivated mushrooms showed the following enzyme activities.

For Laccase ranging from 2 to 62 U/I.

For Manganese peroxidase ranging from 4 to 166 U/I.

And for Lignin peroxidase ranging from 0.7 to 18 U/I.

These different enzyme activities stem from their third difference – their genetic profiles.

For the cultivated mushrooms the genetics are constantly modified to improve

  • the Growth rate
  • Thickness
  • Color
  • Texture
  • Aroma
  • Yield
  • BE

by, for example, hybridization.

The primary aim of hybridization is to combine desirable characteristics from different strains and create variability in the existing germplasm.

In the following study, the authors could show that using hybridization of the two oyster mushroom species Pleurotus pulmonarius and Pleurotus citrinopileatus improved, for example, the mycelium growth rate, texture, and biological efficiency while keeping a mild aroma.

Source [8]

Talk to you in the following video.



[1] Own illustration/footage/picture/graph/etc.

[2] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Stearins%C3%A4ure_Skelett.svg

[3] Poyraz 72 https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Datei:%C3%96ls%C3%A4ure_V1.png#filelinks https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.de

[4] Poyraz 72 https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Datei:Alpha-Linolens%C3%A4ure_V2.png#file https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.de

[5] M Sayuti, Cindenia Puspasari, Khairul Anshar and Muhammad Zeki, Potensial Use of Backyard for Oyster Mushroom (Pleurotus Ostreatus) Cultivation to Increase Family income; Studies on Break-Event Point Analysis, https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1757-899X/536/1/012132, http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

[6] Kumla, J.; Suwannarach, N.; Sujarit, K.; Penkhrue, W.; Kakumyan, P.; Jatuwong, K.; Vadthanarat, S.; Lumyong, S. Cultivation of Mushrooms and Their Lignocellulolytic Enzyme Production Through the Utilization of Agro-Industrial Waste. Molecules 2020, 25, 2811. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25122811, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

[7] Own figure based on Own figure based on Erbil Kalmıs, ihsan Yasa, Fatih Kalyoncu, Barıs Pazarbasi, and Ali Koçyiit, Ligninolytic enzyme activities in mycelium of some wild and commercial mushrooms, African Journal of Biotechnology, https://academicjournals.org/journal/AJB/article-abstract/07805BA8330, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

[8] Abdulgani, Rosnina & Lau, Ching-Ching & Abdullah, Noorlidah & Sabaratnam, Vikineswary. (2017). Full Length Article Morphological and Molecular Characterization of Pleurotus pulmonarius (Fr.) Quél Hybrids with Improved Sporophore Features and Higher Biological Efficacy. International Journal of Agriculture and Biology. 19. 10.17957/IJAB/15.0343.