To investigate the spatiotemporal growth dynamics in fungal microcosms and to follow the spatial degradation effects of fungal lignocellulose fermentation, a new and flexible experimental setup was developed and tested. White and brown rot fungi were cultivated under solid-state conditions in beech wood-filled silicon tubes for 5 weeks. After inoculation of wood material at one end of the tube, the culture vessels were aerated and moistured by flushing air through alkaline and aqueous solutions. After incubation, the silicon tubes were harvested and segmented to follow different growth and degradation parameters. This new approach holds great potential since it allows the use of different growth substrates, variable aeration or moisturization conditions and is therefore a useful tool for diverse degradation studies, e.g. respiration/mineralization studies involving flow meters or carbon dioxide sensors or for molecular biological approaches.
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