Corynascus thermophilus CBS 405.69

Credit: Corinne Darmond

Genome Project

— Genozymes Project, Concordia University

EST Project

- Centre for Structural and Functional Genomics, Concordia University

Species Information (from MycoBank)

Current name

Corynascus thermophilus (Fergus & Sinden) Klopotek 1974 [1] 


Thielavia thermophila Fergus & Sinden 1969 [2]

Obligate synonym

Chaetomidium thermophilum (Fergus & Sinden)

Associated anamorph

Myceliophthora fergusii (Klopotek) Oorschot 1977 [3]

Lineage (from MycoBank)

Ascomycota; Sordariomycetes; Sordariales; Chaetomiaceae; Corynascus


The species, first described by Fergus and Sinden (2), was isolated from mushroom compost consisting of equal parts of hay, corn cobs, manure, and wheat straw, and grows optimally at 45 oC with a range of 25 oC - 54 oC.

Interesting Features

Lignocellulose degradation

C. thermophilus grows on and degrades cellulose (filter paper), and grows on but does not extensively degrade lignocellulose (bleached newsprint ). In this study of 21 thermophilic and thermotolerant fungal species, C. thermophilus was amongst the most active cellulose degraders (4). When grown on Avicel, it produces enzymes active on xylan, cellulose and cellobiose (5). Crude enzyme preparations from this species were effective in increasing the catalytic glucose yields from steam-pretreated barley straw hydrolysis with commercial cellulase preparations (6). Purification and characterization of a cellobiose dehydrogenase from C. thermophilus has been reported. (7)


1. von Klopotek A (1974) [Revision of thermophilic Sporotrichum species: Chrysosporium thermophilum (Apinis) comb. nov. and Chrysosporium fergusii spec. nov. equal status conidialis of Corynascus thermophilus Fergus and (Sinden) comb. nov]. Arch Microbiol 98: 365-369. []

2. Fergus CL, Sinden JW (1969) A new thermophilic fungus from mushroom compost: Thielavia thermophila spec. nov. Canadian Journal of Botany 47: 1635-1637.

3. van Oorschot CAN (1977) The genus Myceliophthora. Persoonia 9: 401-408.

4. Rosenberg SL (1978) Cellulose and Lignocellulose Degradation by Thermophilic and Thermotolerant Fung. Mycologia 70: 1-13

5. Oberson J, Binz T, FracheboudD and Canevascini G (1992)Comparative investigation of cellulose-degrading enzyme systems produced by different strains of Myceliophthora thermophila (Apinis) v. Oorschot. Enzyme and Microbial Technology 14: 303-312

6. Rosgaard L, Pedersen S, Cherry JR, Harris P, Meyer AS (2006) Efficiency of new fungal cellulase systems in boosting enzymatic degradation of barley straw lignocellulose. Biotechnol Prog 22: 493-498.

7. Harreither W, Sygmund C, Augustin M, Narciso M, Rabinovich ML, Gorton L, Haltrich D, Ludwig R (2011) Catalytic properties and classification of cellobiose dehydrogenases from ascomycetes. Appl Environ Microbiol 77:1804-1815