Cordyceps Militaris Research

Aim: Trial various substrates combinations to find what substrates support the most vigourous/quickest growth, best nutritional content and highest yields and write a guide for growing this species.

Why it’s important: Little information exists on how to grow Cordyceps militaris and what substrates and growing conditions it prefers and how different available strains compare to each other. This information will be very valuable to people wishing to start growing this species of Cordyceps that is currently attracting a lot of attention because of its ability to fruit off grain based substrates. We are developing this unique mushroom ally with its unusual energy-boosting capacity in mind for all of our ecologist and permaculture colleagues, to help them reach peak performance over the ecologically crucial next 2 decades.

How it works: Cordyceps militaris is a cordyceps mushroom that grows originally in caterpillars, but which has now been adapted for vegan substrates, which possesses an array of therapeutic benefits thanks to the immune system modulating substances complex branch chain polysaccharides, cordycepin, and D-Mannitol, and to the presence of high concentrations of the universal mitochondrial energy conversion molecule adenosine (ADP, ATP), which gives Cordyceps militaris its unique physical performance and energy boosting effects, as exhibited in the Chinese Olympic teams who use a similar, but more studied, species called Cordyceps sinensis. Adenosine-rich Cordyceps militaris can be combined as part of a smart mitochondrial enchancing and rejuvenating cellular energy improving formula for enhancement of any strenuous physical work, from Permaculture to Olympic Sports, in combination with NADH or vitamin B3 and liposolublised or high dose coenzyme Q10.

Cordycepin is an incomplete Adenosine molecule, proving that the Adenosine is produced by the Cordyceps mushroom itself and not concentrated from caterpillars. I would say that this evolved as part of the spore propagation strategy of Cordyceps; when it is about to fruit and spore in the wild, it induces the caterpillar to climb to the highest point on the tree so the spores are well distributed; the Adenosine production could have evolved as a way to give the caterpillar extra muscle power for climbing.

Unlike Cordyceps sinensis and the other species of Cordyceps, Cordyceps militaris is able to fruit on vegan substrate outside of caterpillars, and the fruiting body contains more than double the adenosine of the mycelium, and is also richer in other nutrients than the mycelial vegan Cordyceps available on the market today. Cordyceps militaris is 10% omega 3 linolenic acid, and a way we can further improve it through formulating a vegan growth substrate is through partially replacing this linolenic acid with gamma linolenic acid (GLA), the precursor of the series one prostaglandin hormones, sold commonly in evening primrose oil, through intelligent choice of substrates, such as the addition of hempseed or blackcurrantseed.

ABOVE: Vegan Cordyceps militaris, available from Hyperion Herbs online.

Alex Daniel and James Ovenden will use innovative robotic autoclaving and cataloguing processes based on Raspberry Pi electronics and Python programming to screen strains of vegan Cordyceps militaris in order to perfect two strains for two different purposes:

    1. Adenosine rich, Cordycepin impoverished C. militaris; used to enhance all physical activities and strenuous work and sports as a xenobiotic megasource of mitochondrial ADP/ATP.

    2. Cordycepin rich C. militaris. Cordycepin is an incomplete Adenosine molecule lacking a hydroxyl group on the ribose penta-ring. When, rather than ending up as mitochondrial ATP, this is incorporated into RNA as a nucleotide, the lack of this hydroxyl group means the ribophosphate RNA backbone fails to form and the RNA chain gets broken off and no longer completes cell metabolic functions. When taken into the body of a cancer patient, this substance is absorbed by rapidly replicating cancer cells and incorporated into their rapidly replicating messenger RNA, where it impairs the ability of the cancer cell to grow and replicate. This has already been successfully trialled against Leukaemia, and is very likely to have many other uses as an interferon in other cancers and pathogenic bacterial, viral and protozoan diseases as well.

Brief Outline of Process: Trial over 50 different substrate formulations with each strain and trial growing at 20 degrees C and 25 degrees C. Record date of inoculation, photos at time of harvest of each flush, weight of harvest of each flush, time of harvest.

Equipment and materials needed: substrate materials including sprouted quinoa, GLA-bearing sprouted hempseed, sprouted blackcurrant seed and various palm fats (amino acid and GLA sources), autoclave, lab with flowhood, fruiting room, sea minerals.

Time: 30 hours lab/harvest/maintenance time, 40 hours writing the manual/documenting the complete process

Experiments: 50 substrates composed plant and insect protein sources, different lipids, and carbohydrates.

Cordyceps militaris is useful for high-performance personnel, physical labourers, hardworking executives, permaculturists and ecologists, athletes, performance artists, leukaemia & cancer patients, other disease victims. World´s best lung tonic.

I have just discovered by playing around with Cordyceps militaris extract that I can create a kind of Cordyceps Marmite from it, so anybody who likes Marmite I suppose! The name militaris suggests Ye Olde Middle Kingdom are feeding it to their army, which is exactly my point about high performance personnel.

As Marmite with added cyano-cobalt-amine (B12) and other vitamins is already so beneficial to vegans and vegetarians, Cordyceps militaris extract could be blended with yeast extract in the exact proportions so that a daily dosage of Cordyceps militaris is present in an average daily dose of Marmite. This Marmite or Marmilitarmite could be a vegetarian and vegan superfood of epic nutritional value to the public.

The project will take place in Cusco, then later in other parts of South America. The idea behind the Elemental Electrical suite of ecological solutions to the industrial and agricultural dilemma of the 21st century is that the projects will run indefinitely and spread throughout the world in an autonomous grassroots fashion, and that the carbon sink aspects of the biological projects will be accounted and incorporated into full historical carbon accounting offsets of industrial participants of “Pay to Purify” cleantech conversions.

Other Cordyceps militaris developers use either grain spawn, which produces a nutritionally inferior product, or non-vegan insect based substrate such as silkworm larvae. Very high grade seamineralised multifactorial substrate for high nutrient quality vegan C. militaris fruiting body is as yet unperfected.

Marmilitarmite has not yet been created anywhere. Lush could market it if interested.

BUDGET: £1000 (Materials: £300, Documentation: £400, Lab time: £300)