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Pleurotus eryngii

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Pleurotus eryngii
Two Pleurotus eryngii mushrooms, one standing up and another laying on its side with its cap facing away from the camera.
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Basidiomycota
Class: Agaricomycetes
Order: Agaricales
Family: Pleurotaceae
Genus: Pleurotus
P. eryngii
Binomial name
Pleurotus eryngii
(DC.) Quél. 1872
Pleurotus eryngii
View the Mycomorphbox template that generates the following list
Gills on hymenium
Cap is depressed or offset
Hymenium is decurrent
Stipe is bare
Spore print is white
Ecology is saprotrophic
Edibility is choice

Pleurotus eryngii (also known as king trumpet mushroom, French horn mushroom, eryngi, king oyster mushroom, king brown mushroom, boletus of the steppes[Note 1], trumpet royale, aliʻi oyster) is an edible mushroom native to Mediterranean regions of Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa, but also grown in many parts of Asia.[1]


Its species name is derived from the fact that it grows in association with the roots of Eryngium campestre or other Eryngium plants (English names: 'sea holly' or 'eryngo'). P. eryngii is a species complex, and a number of varieties have been described, with differing plant associates in the carrot family (Apiaceae).

Other specimens of P. eryngii have been reported in association with plants in the genera Ferulago, Cachrys, Laserpitium, and Diplotaenia, all in Apiaceae.[6]

Molecular studies have shown Pleurotus nebrodensis to be closely related to, but distinct from, P. eryngii.[6] Pleurotus fossulatus may be another closely related species.[6]


Pleurotus eryngii is the largest species in the oyster mushroom genus, Pleurotus, which also contains the oyster mushroom Pleurotus ostreatus. It has a thick, meaty white stem and a small tan cap (in young specimens). Its natural range extends from the Atlantic Ocean through the Mediterranean Basin and Central Europe into Western Asia and India.[6] Unlike other species of Pleurotus, which are primarily wood-decay fungi, the P. eryngii complex are also weak parasites on the roots of herbaceous plants, although they may also be cultured on organic wastes.[6][7]


Sequence analysis of the ITS1–5.8S rDNA–ITS2 of P. eryngii and the control strains P. ostreatus and P. ferulae, demonstrated that the DNA regions share almost 99% of sequence identity, indicating closely related mushroom strains. ITS1–5.8S rDNA–ITS2 sequence analysis is DNA sequencing used to confirm the mushroom species at hand, although it does distinguish variants in the mushroom species. RAPD are superior to DNA sequence-based methods with distinguishing strains in species. To verify the mushroom strains RAPD was used, and DNA fragments were amplified from the total cellular DNA. Verification of Pleurotus eryngii strains was assessed using ITS sequence analysis and RAPD fingerprinting. Analysis of the DNA fragment pattern showed that the 22 P. eryngii strains were clearly distinguished from the control strains P. ostreatus and P. ferulae, and could be categorized into five subgroups:

  • Group 1- commonly showed widely spaced gills under the convex cap. They tended to form small fruiting bodies. Eastern Europe. 24-25C optimum growth
  • Group 2- funnel-shaped cap phenotype with a stout stem. Members in this group grew faster than other mushrooms. They required 15–16 d from the fructification for harvest whereas the others required 18–21 d.
  • Group 3- shared similar morphological characteristics; they formed thin fruiting bodies with a small convex cap. Strains KNR2514 and KNR 2522
  • Group 4- resembled group I mushrooms morphologically but grew at around 27 °C.
  • Group 5- was collected from Iran; they grew as mycelia but hardly formed fruiting bodies. In this group, we only succeeded in generating fruiting bodies for KNR2517, which had a wide, white, convex cap. Their optimal growth temperature was the lowest among the strains tested (19–21 °C), which may reflect their geographical origin.


Pleurotus populations growing on umbellifers seem to have recently diverged through a sympatric speciation process, that is based on both intrinsic reproductive barriers and extrinsic ecogeographical factors.[citation needed]

Pleurotus eryngii is a saprotrophic fungus. Saprotrophic fungi use the process of chemoheterotrophic extracellular digestion involved in the processing of decayed organic matter. They are also an NTF, nematode-trapping fungi, that survives by trapping and digesting nematodes working as a natural pesticide. These fungi produce trapping devices to capture, kill, and digest nematodes as food sources. Traps are not only the weapons that NTF use to capture and infect nematodes but also an important indicator of their switch from a saprophytic to a predacious lifestyle. Pleurotus eryngii can live both saprophytically on organic matter and as predators by capturing tiny animals. The development of traps shows their evolutionary importance of them. They provide a crucial role in obtaining nutrients and may confer competitive advantages over non-predatory fungi. This fungal carnivorism diverged from saprophytism about 419 million years ago (Mya), after the origin of nematodes about 550–600 Mya. This following evolution of the fungi after the nematode suggests the co-evolution of the species. Phylogenetic analysis suggested that NTF have a common ancestor and the ability to capture nematodes has been an important trait for speciation and diversification within the clade.[citation needed]

P. eryngii extract reduced the number of Panagrellus sp. larvae after 24 h by 90%. P. eryngii fungus has predatory activity against Panagrellus sp. larvae due to toxin production and negatively affects Meloidogyne javanica eggs and juveniles development.[citation needed]


The mushroom has a good shelf life and is cultivated widely. It has little flavor or aroma when raw. When cooked, it develops rich umami flavor and a meaty texture. When cultivating Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) can be used in the mushroom industry for the classification and maintenance of high-quality mushroom spawns.[citation needed] P. eryngii, are commercially produced, edible mushrooms, with P. eryngii making up 30% of the Korean edible mushroom market since its introduction in 1995.[citation needed] It is commonly used as a meat substitute in many vegan recipes.[citation needed]

Pleurotus eryngii may contain chemicals that stimulate the immune system.[8] Dietary intake of Pleurotus eryngii may function as cholesterol-lowering dietary agent.[9]

Like some other Pleurotus species, P. eryngii attacks nematodes and may provide a control method for these parasites when they infect cats and dogs.[citation needed]

It is very frequently used in Apulian cuisine. An example of this is when it is put on top of orecchiette.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The name "boletus of the steppes" is misleading as Pleurotus eryngii is a gilled mushroom in order Agaricales, and Boletus is a genus of mushrooms with pores rather than gills in order Boletales.


  1. ^ [1] Archived May 18, 2006, at the Wayback Machine[self-published source?]
  2. ^ a b Lewinsohn, D.; Wasser, S. P.; Reshetnikov, S. V.; Hadar, Y.; Nevo, E. (2002). "The Pleurotus eryngii species-complex in Israel: distribution and morphological description of a new taxon". Mycotaxon. 81: 51–67.
  3. ^ Venturella, G.; Zervakis, G.; La Rocca, S. (2000). "Pleurotus eryngii var. elaeoselini var. nov. from Sicily". Mycotaxon. 76: 419–427.
  4. ^ Estrada, Alma E. Rodriguez; Jimenez-Gasco, Maria del Mar; Royse, Daniel J. (May 2010). "Pleurotus eryngii species complex: Sequence analysis and phylogeny based on partial EF1α and RPB2 genes". Fungal Biology. 114 (5–6): 421–428. doi:10.1016/j.funbio.2010.03.003. PMID 20943152.
  5. ^ Venturella, G.; Zervakis, G.; Saitta, A. (2002). "Pleurotus eryngii var. thapsiae var. nov. from Sicily". Mycotaxon. 81: 69–74.
  6. ^ a b c d e Venturella, Giuseppe; Zervakis, Georgios I.; Papadopoulou, Kalliopi (1 November 2001). "Genetic polymorphism and taxonomic infrastructure of the Pleurotus eryngii species-complex as determined by RAPD analysis, isozyme profiles and ecomorphological characters". Microbiology. 147 (11): 3183–3194. doi:10.1099/00221287-147-11-3183. PMID 11700370.
  7. ^ Estrada, Alma E. Rodriguez; Royse, Daniel J. (February 2008). "Pleurotus eryngii and P. nebrodensis: from the wild to commercial production". Mushroom News. 56 (2): 4.
  8. ^ Nozaki, Hirofumi; Itonori, Saki; Sugita, Mutsumi; Nakamura, Kimihide; Ohba, Kiyoshi; Suzuki, Akemi; Kushi, Yasunori (August 2008). "Mushroom acidic glycosphingolipid induction of cytokine secretion from murine T cells and proliferation of NK1.1 α/β TCR-double positive cells in vitro". Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. 373 (3): 435–439. doi:10.1016/j.bbrc.2008.06.047. PMID 18577373.
  9. ^ Alam, Nuhu; Yoon, Ki Nam; Lee, Jae Seong; Cho, Hae Jin; Shim, Mi Ja; Lee, Tae Soo (Oct 2011). "Dietary effect of Pleurotus eryngii on biochemical function and histology in hypercholesterolemic rats". Saudi Journal of Biological Sciences. 18 (4): 403–409. doi:10.1016/j.sjbs.2011.07.001. ISSN 1319-562X. PMC 3730794. PMID 23961153.


  • Ravash, Rudabe; Shiran, Behrouz; Alavi, Aziz-Allah; Bayat, Fereshteh; Rajaee, Saeideh; Zervakis, Georgios I. (May 2010). "Genetic variability and molecular phylogeny of Pleurotus eryngii species-complex isolates from Iran, and notes on the systematics of Asiatic populations". Mycological Progress. 9 (2): 181–194. doi:10.1007/s11557-009-0624-2. S2CID 19342206.
  • Venturella, Giuseppe; Zervakis, Georgios I.; Papadopoulou, Kalliopi (1 November 2001). "Genetic polymorphism and taxonomic infrastructure of the Pleurotus eryngii species-complex as determined by RAPD analysis, isozyme profiles and ecomorphological characters". Microbiology. 147 (11): 3183–3194. doi:10.1099/00221287-147-11-3183. PMID 11700370.
  • Ro, Hyeon-Su; Kim, Sung Soon; Ryu, Jae San; Jeon, Che-Ok; Lee, Tae Soo; Lee, Hyun-Sook (1 June 2007). "Comparative studies on the diversity of the edible mushroom Pleurotus eryngii: ITS sequence analysis, RAPD fingerprinting, and physiological characteristics". Mycological Research. 111 (6): 710–715. doi:10.1016/j.mycres.2007.03.016. PMID 17604148.
  • Su, Hao; Zhao, Yong; Zhou, Jing; Feng, Huihua; Jiang, Dewei; Zhang, Ke-Qin; Yang, Jinkui (February 2017). "Trapping devices of nematode-trapping fungi: formation, evolution, and genomic perspectives: Trapping devices of nematode-trapping fungi". Biological Reviews. 92 (1): 357–368. doi:10.1111/brv.12233. PMID 26526919. S2CID 31294847.
  • Sufiate, Bruna Leite; Soares, Filippe Elias de Freitas; Moreira, Samara Silveira; Gouveia, Angélica de Souza; Monteiro, Thalita Suelen Avelar; Freitas, Leandro Grassi de; Queiroz, José Humberto de (1 October 2017). "Nematicidal action of Pleurotus eryngii metabolites". Biocatalysis and Agricultural Biotechnology. 12: 216–219. doi:10.1016/j.bcab.2017.10.009.
  • Rajarathnam, S.; Bano, Zakia; Miles, Philip G. (1 January 1987). "Pleurotus mushrooms. Part I A. morphology, life cycle, taxonomy, breeding, and cultivation". CRC Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition. 26 (2): 157–223. doi:10.1080/10408398709527465. PMID 3322683.
  • "fungus - Outline of classification of fungi". Britannica.

External links[edit]

Media related to Pleurotus eryngii at Wikimedia Commons