Improving ruminal digestibility of various wheat straw types by white-rot fungi

Nazri Nayan*, Gijs van Erven, Mirjam A. Kabel, Anton S.M. Sonnenberg, Wouter H. Hendriks, John W. Cone

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: This study investigated the ruminal degradability of various wheat straw types by the white-rot fungi Ceriporiopsis subvermispora (CS) and Lentinula edodes (LE). Different cultivars (CV) of wheat straw at different maturity stages (MS) were treated with the fungi for 7 weeks and assessed for chemical composition and in vitro gas production (IVGP). RESULTS: Both fungi showed a more pronounced degradation of lignin on a more mature straw (MS3; 89.0%) in comparison with the straw harvested at an earlier stage (MS1; 70.7%). Quantitative pyrolysis coupled to gas chromatography and mass spectrometry, using 13C lignin as an internal standard 13C-IS Py-GC/MS revealed that lignin in more mature straw was degraded and modified to a greater extent. In contrast, cellulose was less degraded in MS3, as compared to MS1 (8.3% versus 14.6%). There was no effect of different MS on the IVGP of the fungus-treated straws. Among the different straw cultivars, the extent of lignin degradation varied greatly (47% to 93.5%). This may explain the significant (P < 0.001) effect of cultivar on the IVGP of the fungal-treated straws. Regardless of the factors tested, both fungi were very capable of improving the IVGP of all straw types by 15.3% to 47.6%, (as compared to untreated straw), with CS performing better than LE – on different MS (33.6% versus 20.4%) and CVs (43.2% versus 29.1%). CONCLUSION: The extent of lignin degradation caused by fungal treatment was more pronounced on the more mature and lignified straw, while variable results were obtained with different cultivars. Both fungi were capable of improving the IVGP of various straw types.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)957-965
JournalJournal of the Science of Food and Agriculture
Issue number2
Early online date20 Aug 2018
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • in vitro gas production
  • lignocellulosic biomass
  • ruminant feed
  • wheat straw cultivar
  • wheat straw maturity
  • white-rot fungi


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