Our previous studies indicated that extracellular glycoproteins produced by some white-rot and brown-rot basidiomycetous fungi reduce Fe(III) to Fe(II) and O2 to H2O2 and produce hydroxyl radicals. The continuous generation of hydroxyl radicals requires a constant supply of O2 and an electron donor for the reduction of oxidized forms of the glycoproteins to the reduced forms. However, electron donors for this reaction, such as NADH, have not been identified. In this study, the amounts of the extracellular pyridine coenzymes, NAD(＋) and NADH, were measured in agar cultures of four white-rot fungi, one brown-rot fungus, and three soft-rot fungi. The sums of NAD(＋) and NADH detected in wood-containing cultures of all five basidiomycetes were greater than those in glucose cultures. The amounts of NAD(＋) were higher than those of NADH in all wood-containing cultures except that of Irpex lacteus, and NAD(＋) was greater than NADH in all glucose cultures except that of Fomitopsis palustris. Significant amounts of pyridine coenzymes were present in glucose and wood-containing cultures of the three soft-rot fungi. The non-wood-degrading fungus, Penicillium funiculosum, did not produce NAD(＋) or NADH in either glucose or wood-containing cultures. The extracellular pyridine coenzyme levels were relatively high compared to the rates of extracellular hydroxyl radical generation in wood-degrading fungal cultures. Thus, white-, brown-, and soft-rot fungi produce pyridine coenzymes that could serve as electron donors for the production of hydroxyl radicals during wood degradation.
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