Why is Sulfur a Fungicide?

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by Facial, May 4, 2012.

  1. Facial Valued Senior Member

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    I am having difficulty finding scientific explanations for why sulfur is used as a fungicide, to great efficacy. Does anyone have knowledge or leads on this?
     
  2. arauca Banned Banned

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    Camarade, perhaps sulfur react with oxygen forms SO2 and SO2 in presence react with water and form a strong acid, which is toxic
     
  3. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Interesting question but baffling. Even Wikipedia doesn't give the answer.

    Sulfur seems to be a very wide-range poison. In addition to fungus, it is also used to kill bacteria and even insects.
     
  4. Facial Valued Senior Member

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    The acid explanation is quite intriguing, but the formation of oxides of sulfur seems limited if one starts from an elemental form - the activation energy would need to be somewhat high given the electronegativities.

    Fraggle I have never seen you stumped on a question before!
     
  5. Epictetus here & now Registered Senior Member

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    I know of a Chinese 'herbal' ointment that is basically sulfur and nothing else. It works like nothing else on foot fungus -even better than Australian tea tree oil.
    It seems redundant to me to ask how or why it kills fungus. Because it's a nasty, toxic chemical that's why! This thread reminds me of the one about why getting shot with a bullet hurts, but we were specifically instructed there not to answer sarcastically. So sorry, I'm taking it out here! :p
     

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