Structural Diversity of Lichen Metabolites and Their Potential Use

  • Joanne G. Romagni
  • Franck E. Dayan


Lichens are symbiotic organisms composed of a fungal partner, the mycobiont, usually in association with one or more photosynthetic partners, the photobiont(s). The photobionts can be green alga, cyanobacteria or both. There are approximately 17,000 species of mycobionts whereas there are only ca. 40 species ofphotobionts. Therefore, the taxonomic name of the lichen is traditionally determined by the species of the fungal partner. The mycobiont, being the host partner for the photobiont, generally determines the morphology of the lichen species. Most lichen mycobionts are not known to exist naturally without the photobiont, whereas many of the photobionts, like the cyanobacteria Nostoc, Scytonema, and the green algae, Trentepohlia, are known to flourish alone in nature. However, because the symbiosis is so complex, lichens are normally referred to as individual organisms rather than separate organisms.


Ursolic Acid Lichen Species Usnic Acid Lichen Substance Lichen Extract 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joanne G. Romagni
    • 1
  • Franck E. Dayan
    • 2
  1. 1.University of St. ThomasHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Natural Products Utilization Research UnitUSDA-ARSUniversityUSA

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