Clavariadelphus truncatus

Clavariadelphus truncatus (Quél.) Donk, the flat-topped coral.


Kingdom Fungi
Phylum Basidiomycota
Class Basidiomycetes
Order Phallales
Family Gomphaceae
Genus Clavariadelphus


Clavaria truncata Quél.
Clavaria truncata Lovejoy
Clavariadelphus borealis V.L. Wells & Kempton
Trombetta pistillaris (Fr.) Kuntze

Common name

Club mushroom
Orange club
Flat-topped coral
Truncated club coral


Fruiting body: 6-15 cm tall, 2.0-8 cm wide; club-shaped; tip rounded at first, but soon flattened and sometimes depressed in age, with a rounded, uplifted margin; surface dry, smooth at first, developing irregular vertical wrinkles or grooves; light orange-yellow to orange or yellowish-brown.
Flesh: white, thin, hollow at top.
Spore print: yellowish.
9-12 x 5-7 µm, ellipsoid, smooth, hyaline, nonamyloid.
Edibility: edible, with a distinctive bitter-sweet taste.
Habitat: solitary, gregarious, or in small clusters on soil in coniferous woods; late summer to autumn.
Chemical reactions: flesh turns green in FeSO4.

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Medicinal Mushrooms

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Medicinal properties

Anti-tumor effects

Farnesyl-protein transferase (FPTase) is an enzyme that catalyses the transfer of the isoprenoid farnesyl to various cellular proteins, a process that is essential to establishing the proper cellular location and activity of the modified proteins. Included among these modified proteins is Ras, a protein that when farnesylated has tumor-causing properties. Inhibition of FPTase activity is known to reduce tumor development in mice, suggesting that FPTase is a viable therapeutic target in human cancers, especially in leukemias and pancreatic and colon carcinomas, where mutated ras-oncogenes are often found. Research has shown that the triterpenoid clavaric acid, a fungal metabolite found in C. truncatus, inhibits FTPase, with an IC50 = 1.3 µM (Jayasuriya et al., 1998; Lingham et al., 1998).

Clavaric acid
Clavaric acid, the FTPase-inihibiting anti-tumor compound from the medicinal mushroom Clavariadelphus truncatus

Clavaric acid, the common name for 24,25-dihydroxy-2-(3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl) lanostan-3-one.

Antibacterial activity

Using the disk diffusion and microdilution methods, the antimicrobial activity of C. truncatus was evaluated (Yamac and Bilgili, 2006). Aqueous and organic extracts of the club mushroom had a broad antibacterial spectrum, showing weak activity against the Gram-negative bacteria Escherichia coli, Enterobacter aerogenes and Salmonella typhimurium. Both extracts were also antibacterial towards Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis; the spectrum and levels of antimicrobial activity were similar to that of the positive control, ceftriaxone.  The antibiotic activity was not sensitive to heat treatment (i.e. heating at 60°C for 30 min or 100°C for 5 min).


California Fungi


Jayasuriya H, Silverman KC, Zink DL, Jenkins RG, Sanchez M, Pelaez F, Vilella D, Lingham RB, Singh SB.
Clavaric acid: A triterpenoid inhibitor of farnesyl-protein transferase from Clavariadelphus truncatus.
J Nat Prod. 1998 61(12):1568-70.

Lingham RB, Silverman KC, Jayasuriya H, Kim BM, Amo SE, Wilson FR, Rew DJ, Schaber MD, Bergstrom JD, Koblan KS, Graham SL, Kohl NE, Gibbs JB, Singh SB.
Clavaric acid and steroidal analogues as ras- and FPP-directed inhibitors of human farnesyl-protein transferase.
J Med Chem. 1998 41(23):4492-501.

Yamac M, Bilgili F.
Antimicrobial activities of fruit bodies and/or mycelial cultures of some mushroom isolates.
Pharm Biol. 2006 44(9):660-7.

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