What comes to mind when you think of fungi?


Does EW! GROSS! COOL! come to mind?


Have you ever thought that fungi can actually be useful?


Well, Rhizopus stolonifer has one particular, very useful ability, which is utilized for medicinal purposes. It is a type of fungi that can be found in common birth control pills. Rhizopus stolonifer has the ability to transform steroids, such as progesterone, in order to treat individuals who have hormonal deficiencies. Rhizopus stolonifer has a steroid hydroxylating enzyme complex and binding sites on its plasma membrane, which enables it to be so effective at producing the steroids. Birth control pills are multi-purpose medications used by women to prevent pregnancy and to treat emotional problems they may experience related to their monthly periods. Rhizopus stolonifer provides the necessary component of steroids for birth control pills in order for these emotional problems due to hormonal changes during a woman's life to be controlled.


bread mold spores

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Additionally, Rhizopus stolonifer is a common member of the fungal phylum Zygomycota. Not only is it the most common, it is the fastest growing of the Zygomycota. Rhizopus stolonifer is also commonly known as a bread mold that is filamentous and prefers moist environments. In order to learn more about the areas in which Rhizopus stolonifer lives, please proceed to habitat. Also, please visit classification to learn what this mold upholds.


To learn about other interesting medicinal organisms go to » MultipleOrganisms.net.


Specifically, if you would like to learn about another type of fungus that is the most common of the fungi family Agaricaceae, then proceed to learn about the Giant Puffball. Also, you can learn about a different type of filamentous organism named Spirogyra longata.


**Throughout this web page I provide links, just like the ones above, to many other interesting web pages on organisms researched by other students previously in organismal biology. Please feel free to browse their web pages, along with mine, to gain a better understanding of the organisms around you. Also, if you love any of the pictures I included as much as I do, please click on them to go to the photographer's web page to see and learn more.


Created by: Christina Olbrantz

University of Wisconsin- La Crosse: Organismal Biology

Last updated 9 April 2011