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Electrical response of fungi to changing moisture content

Phillips, Neil; Gandia, Antoni; Adamatzky, Andrew

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Dr Neil Phillips
Research Fellow in Fungal Analog Electronics

Antoni Gandia


Mycelium-bound composites are potential alternatives to conventional materials for a variety of applications, including thermal and acoustic building panels and product packaging. If the reactions of live mycelium to environmental conditions and stimuli are taken into account, it is possible to create functioning fungal materials. Thus, active building components, sensory wearables, etc. might be created. This research describes the electrical sensitivity of fungus to changes in the moisture content of a mycelium-bound composite. Trains of electrical spikes initiate spontaneously in fresh mycelium-bound composites with a moisture content between ∼ 95% and ∼ 65%, and between ∼ 15% and ∼ 5% when partially dried. When the surfaces of mycelium-bound composites were partially or totally encased with an impermeable layer, increased electrical activity was observed. In fresh mycelium-bound composites, electrical spikes were seen both spontaneously and when induced by water droplets on the surface. Also explored is the link between electrical activity and electrode depth. Future designs of smart buildings, wearables, fungi-based sensors, and unconventional computer systems may benefit from fungi configurations and biofabrication flexibility.


Phillips, N., Gandia, A., & Adamatzky, A. (2023). Electrical response of fungi to changing moisture content. Fungal Biology and Biotechnology, 10(1), Article 8.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 25, 2023
Online Publication Date Apr 3, 2023
Publication Date Apr 3, 2023
Deposit Date Apr 21, 2023
Publicly Available Date Apr 24, 2023
Journal Fungal Biology and Biotechnology
Electronic ISSN 2054-3085
Publisher BioMed Central
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 10
Issue 1
Article Number 8
Keywords Research, Connecting material science and fungal biology, Mycelium network, Fungal materials, Environmental sensors, Oscillations, Biosensor
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