Poisonous Mushrooms

  • Gholamreza Karimi
  • Bibi Marjan Razavi
Reference work entry
Part of the Toxinology book series (TOXI, volume 2)


Mushrooms are the sexual organs or fruiting bodies of fungi. Although some mushrooms are considered to be a rich source for nutrients and biologically active compounds, some species are known because of their toxicity that may cause fatalities every year generally due to misidentification. Among thousands of mushroom species, fewer than a hundred are toxic. Mushroom poisoning is associated with different signs and symptoms that are mainly attributed to some active substances belonging to poisonous mushrooms. Most mushroom toxins cause mild or moderate signs and symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, fever, and headache. However, some species result in severe poisoning. Renal failure, neurotoxicity, hepatotoxicity, rhabdomyolysis, and other toxic effects were identified in toxicity studies with various species.

The toxicity of mushroom is influenced by many factors including genus and species, geographic location, preparation prior to ingestion, and the human’s susceptibility. This chapter is aimed to address various types of mushroom toxins, thus providing some information about their toxic mechanisms, a brief description of the toxicokinetics (absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion) of mushroom toxins, and management of mushroom poisonings.


Activate Charcoal Mushroom Species Ibotenic Acid Thioctic Acid Severe Poisoning 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Medical Toxicology Research Center and Pharmacy SchoolMashhad University of Medical SciencesMashhadIran
  2. 2.Department of Pharmacodynamy and ToxicologyMashhad University of Medical SciencesMashhadIran

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