As the mycoflora project continues to progress, we will continue working to streamline the protocols being used by participating projects and our partner labs. One of the first significant changes in our protocols is a shift to collecting tissue from dried specimens in empty microcentrifuge tubes. Up until this time, we accepted tissue in 2.0 mL microcentrifuge tubes that contained a buffer solution. These tubes allowed the tissue to be stored from fresh specimens. We are now shifting exclusively to 1.5 mL microcentrifuge tubes without a buffer solution. This change requires that specimens be dried before the tissue is extracted and placed in a tube

A second requirement is that a small portion of the specimen be sent along with the tissue collection tubes. Along with your tube order, you will also be sent small Ziploc bags. Please include a small portion of each collection in these bags, label them with the collection number, and send them along with the tubes to the sequencing facility. The main portion of the collection will still be sent to your partner herbarium. These secondary smaller collections in the Ziploc bags, commonly called a "split" of the collection, should consist of a piece of the primary collection about the size of a quarter to a half dollar. For small samples, it is fine to send a smaller portion. If splitting the collection is not possible without destroying or significantly reducing the primary collection, retain the primary collection in-tact and do not send a split of that sample.

These changes to the protocols will take effect immediately. Awardees of the fall 2018 grants will be sent microcentrifuge tubes without a buffer solution.

Tissue Collection Protocol at Mycoflora.org

If you have any questions about these changes, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The North American Mycoflora Project, Inc. (NAMP) created a Mycoflora Fund to subsidize sequencing by amateurs.  It was launched with $20,000 from the professional association, Mycological Society of America, and a gift of $10,000 from Paul Stamets and Dusty Yao made through the amateur association, North American Mycological Association (the latter funds are restricted to NAMA-affiliated clubs). On May 15th, the Mycoflora Citizen Science Committee made the first sequencing awards to 35 projects. These initial awards fund sequencing of 30 fungal specimens for each project, with funds distributed directly to sequencing labs on receipt of tissue samples.  The results from these citizen science-based sequencing efforts will form the initial backbone of the North American Mycoflora dataset.

The first funding round includes projects sponsored by mycological clubs, by private individuals, as well as by an undergraduate collegiate course. Most projects will focus upon a defined geographic area. Projects focusing on a state or province include New York, Quebec, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, California, Washington, Oregon, Virginia, Kentucky, New Jersey, Indiana, Illinois, and Florida. Projects dealing with a particular taxonomic group will focus on Amanita, Russula, Inocybe, Hygrophoraceae, and Boletaceae, among others. One project is even dedicated to sequencing macrofungi that are popularly used in the dying of fabric; specimen vouchers will include samples of the dye produced from that specimen.

In addition to projects sponsored through the Mycoflora Fund, NAMP also provides sequencing services for self-funded, citizen science based projects. These projects are typically sponsored by regional mycological societies or by private citizens working in collaboration with their communities.

The next application deadline for sequencing awards is September 15, 2018.  All mushroom enthusiast individuals and clubs are welcome to register a local mycoflora project and apply for grants.  More information on the application process can be found at www.mycoflora.org/participate/apply-for-funding.

 

– By NAMP Staff

About North American Mycoflora Project

NAMP is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. We are working towards a single goal - the development of the first comprehensive mycoflora of North America. This project is a consortium of citizen scientists and professional mycologists performing a biological survey of all the macrofungi that occur in North America.

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