What Does The Cordyceps Fungus Do?

What Does The Cordyceps Fungus Do featured image

What does the cordyceps fungus do?

This incredible fungus is not only famous for it’s ability to turn bugs into zombies, it’s also one of the most sought after natural adaptogenic supplements in the world.

The fungus known as cordyceps has the ability to infect and destroy insects. Ophiocordyceps unilateralis is a species that has gained prominence for turning ants into zombies. It infiltrates an ant’s body, creating a network of fibers that take control of the insect’s muscles.

Then it forces the ant to climb a plant stem and clasp its jaws around the undersides of leaves. The fungus excretes a stalk that protrudes from its head and terminates in an orb filled with spores, which rains down and impacts the ant’s colony-mates as they go about their foraging missions. In this manner, the zombie fungus may attack an entire colony. It’s also a master of infiltrating popular culture: it created the monsters and zombies in The Last of Us, as well as the creatures in The Girl With All the Gifts.

Matsuura’s finding of fungus in cicadas is all from the same Ophiocordyceps genus, including the ant-killing species he discovered. That is to say, this unexpected behavior has an explanation. Even when these fungus aren’t active puppet masters, they are still harmful parasites. Despite the fact that their hosts nearly always perish, spore-tipped stalks spring from their bodies after death.

What does Cordyceps Militaris do?

Cordyceps Militaris is a fungi that parasitizes insects. It was first discovered in the Tibetan Plateau, and has since been found in other mountainous regions of China. The fungus attacks the host’s body, causing it to deform and eventually die. The fruiting body of the Cordyceps Militaris then grows out of the host’s body, releasing spores into the environment to infect other insects.

Cordyceps Militaris has a long history of use in traditional Chinese medicine. It is said to have many health benefits, including boosting energy levels, improving circulation, and fighting respiratory infections. Some studies have shown that Cordyceps Militaris can help improve athletic performance, and it is sometimes taken by bodybuilders and other athletes as a supplement.

What does Cordyceps sinensis do?

Cordyceps sinensis is a fungus that has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries. It is said to have a variety of health benefits, including boosting energy levels, improving respiratory function, and aiding in the treatment of cancer and other diseases. While there is some scientific evidence to support these claims, more research is needed to confirm the efficacy of cordyceps sinensis. It’s the less potent form of cordyceps and also the one most found in supplements since it’s easier to cultivate and produce at scale.

About the author

Bruce Wilson

I've studied Mycology and Forest Pathology and love creating content to help other learn more about my passion. Follow along as I continue to explore the amazing world of functional fungi!

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