She studies the soil, the trees and their roots in search of fungi, because they are actually part of her job.
"We want to collect as many diverse species of fungi as possible," said Landvik, a mycologist – a fungi scientist – at the biotech company Novozymes.
The human beekeepers in the production of food and alcohol, drugs, biofuels, washing detergents and even a famous childhood toy: LEGO
Fungi are unique beings, Landvik explained. They are really different from plants, they are really different, they are really, really, amazing. "
In the wild, fungi are not able to move, so they compete against other fungi or bacteria for resources and, in doing so, produce toxic chemicals.
Once samples reach the laboratory, Landvik says they are grown inside a Petri dish and cut into pieces, which are then put into a liquid of nutrients such as minerals and vitamins and a carbon source to help the fungi grow.
Fungi grow by secreting enzymes – proteins that catalyze or speed up chemical reactions – which are captured by the liquid within the flask, allowing them to be studied in-depth.
It's like a "lottery ticket," she says, "as each discovery could turn up" the world, something that we can make a greener industry possible, and so on. "
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