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Japan: Researchers ‘tap’ mushrooms for rubber

Ten pounds yield one pound of allergy-free material
Updated: 12:27 p.m. ET Dec. 2, 2004

TOKYO - Japanese researchers say they have produced rubber from a natural substance extracted from an edible, wild mushroom commonly found in the country.

Researchers at Gunma University, west of Tokyo, have not only produced rubber from the chichitake mushroom but the end-product has the advantage of not containing a protein that can cause allergies, said Hiroshi Mitomo, head of the research team at the university's biological and chemical engineering department.

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