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Working Group I Sub-group 5 'Insects in dry wood'. Plan for data sheets
1982 - IRG/WP 1173
S Cymorek


The restricted distribution of Serpula lacrymans in Australian buildings
1989 - IRG/WP 1382
Temperature data has been gathered over a number of years, not only for flooring regions of various buildings in Melbourne, but also within roof spaces and external to the buildings. Findings are discussed in relation to the distribution of Serpula lacrymans within Australia, its restriction to certain types of building construction and its restriction to flooring regions. The subfloor spaces of badly-ventilated, masonry buildings are highlighted as being better suited than are the subfloor spaces of, for example, Japanese buildings for the activity of this fungus. Hence Serpula lacrymans is very restricted in its distribution in Australia, yet where it is active it does grow rapidly and causes rapid flooring failures.
J D Thornton


The dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans. Examples of attack and remedial treatment
1988 - IRG/WP 1347
The film deals with several aspects of dry rot attack and eradication in buildings. The detailed biology and morphological charasteristics of the fungus are portrayed. The various forms of mycelial growth, the role of the strands in the nourishment and spread of the fungus, as well as the many types of fruitbody formation are outlined. Environmental and nutritional requirements of the fungus as well as the potential infection danger posed by the basidiospores are discussed. The second part of the film, outlining the main reasons for dry-rot attack and spread in building together with the significant damage caused, shows the full extent of the problem to expert and lay-person alike. The necessity of correct survey and inspection of decayed areas to determine the full range of attack is stressed. Examples of various remedial treatments and the present technological state of eradication techniques, e.g. pressure injection, in Germany are discussed.
G Buchwald, B M Hegarty, W Metzner, R Pospischil, H Siegmund, P Grabow


Improved techniques designed for evaluation of fungicides in soil for control of dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans
1985 - IRG/WP 2238
Improved techniques provide a laboratory method for the evaluation of chemicals in soil for control of dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans. Results with their application to three chemicals were reported. These techniques are useful to eliminate chemicals lacking the necessary toxicity and weatherbility for dry rot control when the chemicals have been applied to the soil.
M Takahashi, K Nishimoto


Insects in dry wood (other than termites)
1977 - IRG/WP 153
S Cymorek


The dry rot fungus and other fungi in houses. Part 2
1993 - IRG/WP 93-10001
J Bech-Andersen


The dry rot fungus and other fungi in houses. Part 1
1992 - IRG/WP 92-2389
J Bech-Andersen


Biological performance of gypsum products containing borates
2000 - IRG/WP 00-30237
At suitable retentions borates have biostatic properties enabling them to be used for biodeterioration control in wood. They provide protection against decay fungi, mould, and termites, which are known to also attack gypsum products. Currently, many gypsum products contain added borates, which are used to improve physical and processing characteristics. Work examining the effect of borates at controlling biological attack in gypsum products is presented in this paper. Gypsum or gypsum board with different borate loadings was tested for its performance against dry rot, mould, and subterranean termites in order to see if current commercial levels of borates used in gypsum products would also render them resistant to these common types of biodeterioration. It was confirmed that the presence of borates significantly decreases the amount of biological attack found in gypsum products. From the results obtained it can be concluded that the addition of borates to gypsum products provides more than simple mechanical and processing improvements. For complete biodeterioration control however, especially against mould, higher retentions should be considered. This knowledge could have great significance in the near future, with moves to require termite resistant construction materials (including gypsum board) in some areas and the rising concern of illnesses associated with 'sick building syndrome' caused by in-house mould growth.
J L Fogel, J D Lloyd


Iron promotes decay capacity of Serpula lacrymans
1993 - IRG/WP 93-10008
The influence of iron and iron compounds on the decay capacity of Serpula lacrymans was studied. Mass losses of pine wood caused by dry rot fungus were increased when FeSO4 was added into the culture medium or when there were iron nails or stone wool on the culture medium. This supports the hypothesis that iron in stone-based building materials is one reason for the increased decay capacity of Serpula lacrymans.
L Paajanen


Working Group I 'Biological Problems' Sub-group 'Insects in dry wood (other than termites)', Scope of work
1976 - IRG/WP 152
S Cymorek


The effectiveness test of chemicals against Serpula lacrymans
1984 - IRG/WP 2222
The effectiveness tests of wood preservatives against Serpula lacrymans were conducted in accordance with Japan Industrial Standard A 9302 and Japanese Wood Preserving Association Standard No. 1. Also, the soil treatment test against this fungus was carried out with two chemicals. The preservatives tested without Creosote oil (out of JIS) had sufficient preservative effect against Serpula lacrymans. Flutolanil for soil treatment had full effect for suppression of the hyphal growth of Serpula lacrymans onto the soil surface.
S Doi


Biological control of Serpula lacrymans using Trichoderma spp
1994 - IRG/WP 94-10069
The effectiveness, or otherwise, in killing Serpula lacrymans, of a range of Trichoderma spp. in a variety of media and using two different incubation systems has been tested. In agar based systems with normal nutrients or minimal nutrients with high or low nitrogen contents and high or low iron content Trichoderma harzianum 25 proved to be the most efficient and killing Serpula lacrymans. Other species, such as Trichoderma hamatum 150, were effective in some media but not in others. Initial observation on partially decayed small wood blocks suggested that actively growing Serpula lacrymans could not be killed by Trichoderma spp.. Experiments undertaken on a specially designed system, however, indicated that certain Trichoderma spp. can act as effective antagonists even in wood based systems.
A J Score, J W Palfreyman


Changed susceptibility of the chemically and thermally degraded spruce wood to its attack by the dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans
1999 - IRG/WP 99-10322
In buildings, some intentional or unintended situations can occur at which some wood products are exposed to aggressive chemicals and also to higher temperatures. Occasional activity of fungi on such pre-attacked wood products can be either higher or lower. This paper deals with changes in the susceptibility of spruce wood (Picea abies L. Karst.) to attack by the dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans, in such situations, when the wood samples 8.5x8.5x120 mm3 (RxTxL) were first pre-treated with 1% water solutions of selected acids (H2SO4, CH3COOH), bases (NaOH, NH4OH) or oxidizing agent (H2O2), or they were also exposed to a higher temperature (190°C/3h). The activity of S. lacrymans was totally restricted only in one situation, if the wood was pre-treated with sulphuric acid and then exposed to 190°C. On the other hand, specimens pre-treated with ammonium hydroxide were more susceptible to bio-attack (in both situations: without or with high temperature pre-treatment effect) than sound ones.
L Reinprecht


Some thoughts on the future strategy for eradicating Serpula lacrymans from a building
1989 - IRG/WP 1405
We now have a clear view of the mechanism of translocation of nutrients in the mycelium of Serpula lacrymans which is one of the physiological processes underlying the remarkable capacity of this fungus to spread through a building. Here the elements of the mechanism of translocation are dissected out to suggest avenues which might be followed in the search for new ways for eradicating the fungus from buildings.
D H Jennings


On the problem "House Longhorn Beetle" in hardwoods and an aid to distinguish between Hylotrypes bajulus and Hesperophanes cinereus larvae
1981 - IRG/WP 1141
S Cymorek


Quality control of microwave treatment of timber after dry rot attack
2001 - IRG/WP 01-40205
In Denmark microwave treatment of timber has been used during the last 15 years for eradication of dry rot (Serpula lacrymans). About 1500 microwave treatments have been employed in coorporation with Hussvamp Laboratoriet. Previously all the infected timber was removed plus an extra metre as a safety zone. This meant that all casting boards and plaster had to be removed as well and joists replaced. The cost of such a replacement would often amount to several thousand Danish kroner (100 Dkr . 14 Euro). In cases with sufficient residual strenght of infected timber the cost can be reduced by 40-50% with microwave treatment. Very often it is necessary to support the construction with a fishplate of pressure impregnated wood. Theoretically the lethal temperature for mycelia of Serpula lacrymans is 37°C during 10 minutes, but to ensure that also resting mycelia are killed a temperature of 75°C is used. In order to ensure a sufficient quality of the treatment a thermo controll method has been developed by Hussvamp Laboratoriet whereby the temperature reached inside the wood is registred. In a joist a hole with a diameter of 13 mm is drilled from the side to the centre. A TERMAX or RS 285-936 irreversible temperature sensitive label is placed inside a piece of plastic tube, 6 cm long and 12 mm across, which is inserted into the hole. This is then closed with a corkplug with a diameter of 14 mm and 22 mm long. Afterwards the plug is sealed with a label carrying the logo of Hussvamp Laboratoriet and the text 'Hussvamp Laboratoriets Termokontrol'. The thermo control can be employed at the same time as the attack is delimited or at the start of repair work. After the microwave treatment the seal is removed and the corkplug is pulled out with a corkscrew. The tube with the temperature label is pulled out with a pair of tweezers. On the label the white markings turn black when the indicated temperature is reached. The markings for 65°C, 71°C and 77°C should be black in order to approve the microwave treatment. The method can also be used for other kinds of heat treatment of timber.
J Bech-Andersen, J Andreasson, S A Elborne


The true dry rot fungus (Serpula lacrymans) found in the wild in the forests of the Himalayas
1993 - IRG/WP 93-10002
J Bech-Andersen, S A Elborne, F Goldie, J Singh, B Walker


A new laboratory technique devised with the intention of determining whether, related to practical conditions, there should be a relationship between growth rate and decay capacity (of different strains) of Serpula lacrymans
1989 - IRG/WP 1384
Most laboratory techniques for the determination of growth rate not only use a medium (agar) unrelated to practice, but also yield values that are often far less than those found in practice. Also, most laboratory techniques for the determination of decay capacity ensure that the whole of a small test block becomes fully surface-colonised within the first few days; whereas in Australian practice Serpula lacrymans most often grows in one direction, from the walls across floorboards, with resulting collapse first evident near the ends of boards adjacent to that wall. This paper reports on a new, medium-scale, laboratory technique enabling growth rate measurements and (subsequently) a decay capacity measurement, all using the same piece of timber. Eight strains of Serpula lacrymans have been used in the three evaluation experiments carried out to date. Mean values for growth rate on wood have been suitably high, probably as high as for the most favourable practical situations. Resulting mass losses have, as was intended, been reduced in comparison with values previously obtained in small-scale techniques. This direct technique has confirmed the conclusions that others have made based on their comparisons; that it seems unlikely that the pattern of differences between growth rates of different strains has any consistent similarity with their corresponding decay capacities.
J D Thornton


Isolation of the dry rot fungus, Serpula lacrymans, from the forests of the Himalayan Foothills
1995 - IRG/WP 95-10129
Previous expeditions to the Himalayas (Singh 1993, 1994) have reported on the presence in this area of the dry rot fungus Serpula lacrymans. However, attempts to isolate the organism from material brought back from these expeditions were not successful. In this paper we report on the isolation of Serpula lacrymans from spores and cord material brought back from the Narkanda region of the Himalayas. Whilst morphological analysis suggested the nature of the material as being Serpula lacrymans confirmation of this has been via protein fingerprint studies using SDS-PAGE. In this paper the natural habitat of the dry rot fungus will be discussed and compared with the building environment in which the organism grows in Europe, Japan, etc. In addition information on a range of other assowiated fungal species, also isolated from the Himalayan forest, will be given.
N A White, J W Palfreyman, J Singh, S Singh


Computer-assisted numerical clustering analysis of various strains of Serpula lacrymans (Wulfen:Fr.) Schroeter apud Cohn
1992 - IRG/WP 92-2396
Eight strains of Serpula lacrymans were compared in relation to their previously determined factors (5 physiological and 10 toxicometrical). A numerical clustering analysis was used along with, as coefficient of similarity, "cos Q" after standardization of all results. Results with respect to the combined factors showed a mutual similarity within four groups of strains. The first of these groups comprises the English plus Polish strains, the second comprises the German plus one of the Australian strains, the third the Japanese plus two Australian strains and the fourth the remaining Australian strain. Of particular relevance to the testing of wood preservatives is the separation of the 8 strains into just two groups with respect to the toxicometrical factors, with the English, German and the most commonly-used of the Australian strains all being allocated to the one grouping.
J Wazny, J D Thornton, P Stenzel


Comparative study of termite diversity in moist evergreen forest and dry evergreen forest, Chanthaburi province, Thailand
2003 - IRG/WP 03-10480
Sixty out of one hundred plots of two forest types (moist evergreen forest (MEF) and dry evergreen forest (DEF)) in Chanthaburi Province, eastern Thailand, were randomly surveyed for the presence of termites from all possible habitats. Three hundred and forty-five samples were collected from December 1999 – April 2000. Morphological identification of the 345 samples gave results for 3 families, 8 subfamilies, 20 genera and 42 species, of which 37 species of 19 genera were recorded from MEF and 27 species of 15 genera from DEF respectively. One undetermined species of the genus Angulitermes was recorded, which represents a new addition to the termite list of Thailand. Microcerotermes crassus Snyder, classified as a wood feeder, was found to be the dominant species in MEF and DEF, while Globitermes sulphureus (Haviland) was the second most dominant species. Ancistrotermes pakestanicus (Silverstri, 1912) a fungus growing termite, was another dominant species in MEF. In the cool-dry season, MEF showed an H’-index value of 2.415 and in the hot-dry season an H’-index value of 2.284. The H’-index values of DEF in the cool-dry and the hot-dry seasons were 2.121 and 1.67 respectively. Identification of specimens from a different survey revealed that seasonal changes did not greatly affect termite species richness in all study sites. Species diversity and species richness or termite activity tend to be lower in the hot-dry season (April).
S Chutibhapakorn


The dry rot fungus and other fungi in houses. Part 3
1994 - IRG/WP 94-10083
J Bech-Andersen


List of Members of IRG and contributing workers proposed for membership in IRG/WP/ - I - Sub-group 5
1976 - IRG/WP 154
S Cymorek


Theoretical and practical experiments with eradication of the dry rot fungus by means of microwaves
1992 - IRG/WP 92-1577
Engineer Claus Andersen constructed a device in 1986 for microwave treatment of fungal infested timber. The device was tested on ampullae with live fungal mycelium of the dry rot fungus. A 10 minutes treatment at 37°C gave satisfactory eradicating effect. The method has since been used in practice in approximately 100 instances. A spot-test control has shown satisfactory results.
J Bech-Andersen, C Andersen


How to keep coated wood structures sufficiently dry to avoid damage caused by rot
1991 - IRG/WP 2376
During the last ten years, a new type of problems with wood rot has emerged in Scandinavia. Thousands of houses have been damaged by wood rot attaching to the exterior wood panel. This paper provides an overview of finished and ongoing work in order to identify the cause of these problems. In field tests, the moisture conditions were measured in panels coated with different paint systems. The influence of the panel structure and end-grain sealing on the moisture balance was also studied. The results from these tests show a large difference in the moisture balance between panels with different exterior wood coatings. In laboratory tests, the transmission of water vapour through paint films was measured using a modified cup method, which provides more realistic conditions for coated wood than the common cup method. One interesting observation made in the studies reported here is that latex paints seem to be much more permeable at high levels of relative humidity than earlier research has shown.
S Hjort


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