Home • Psilocybe cubensis v1.0
Psilocybe cubensis growing in the lab. Image by Claudius Lenz.
Psilocybe cubensis growing in the lab. Image by Claudius Lenz.

Genome sequencing of Psilocybe cubensis was not conducted at the DOE Joint Genome Institute, rather it was initiated and carried out by the Department of Pharmaceutical Microbiology at the Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Germany.

Psilocybe cubensis is a coprophilic species, likely originating from the tropical Africa. This fungus prefers warm, humid climates and grows in open grasslands, where it colonizes the dung of cows and other herbivores.

Psilocybe carpophores are colloquially referred to as Magic Mushrooms, as numerous species in this genus have the capacity to synthesize psychotropic indole alkaloid natural products, primarily psilocybin, which is the prodrug to psilocin, the actual hallucinogenic compound. Due to their effects, these mushrooms have been considered to be divine by Central American cultures. The pharmaceutical value of psilocybin and psilocin, still scheduled drugs, has been demonstrated during various clinical studies. Favorable results were shown for the treatment of anxiety, depression, and substance addiction. Genomic sequencing was done during a study to elucidate the biochemical basis of how psilocybin is biosynthesized.

Genome Reference(s)