Comparison of the effects of borate, germanate and tellurate on fungal growth and wood decay
J D Lloyd, D J Dickinson
The tetra-hydroxy borate ion is known to undergo complexation with polyols and has been shown to inhibit dehydrogenase enzymes in this way. It has been previously suggested that this complexation is responsible for the inhibition of fungal growth and the protection of boron treated timber. Other ions that have the ability to complex with polyols have also been shown to inhibit dehydrogenase activity. The effect of two of these ions on fungal growth and wood decay was compared to that of borate. It was found that both germanate and tellurate could reduce fungal growth and provide protection of wood against decay at similar molar concentrations as borate. The results have been used to further develop our understanding of the mechanisms of action of borate wood preservatives and substantiate the theory that borate ion/polyol complexation is responsible for the protection of boron treated timber.