Trichoderma species isolated from water-damaged buildings were screened for toxicity by using boar sperm cells as indicator cells. The crude methanolic cell extract from Trichoderma harzianum strain ES39 inhibited the boar sperm cell motility at a low exposure concentration (50% effective concentration, 1 to 5 mug [dry weight] ml of extended boar semen(-1)). The same exposure concentration depleted the boar sperm cells of NADH(2). Inspection of the exposed boar sperm cells by transmission electron microscopy revealed damage to the plasma membrane. By using the black lipid membrane technique, it was shown that the semipurified metabolites (eluted from a SepPak C-18 cartridge) of T. harzianum strain ES39 induced voltage-dependent conductivity. The high-performance liquid chromatography-purified metabolites of T. harzianum strain ES39 dissipated the mitochondrial membrane potential (Deltapsi(m)) of human lung epithelial carcinoma cells (cell line A549). The semipurified metabolites (eluted from a SepPak C-18 cartridge) of T. harzianum strain ES39 were analyzed by mass spectrometry (MS). Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization and nanoflow electrospray ionization MS revealed five major peptailbols, each of which contained 18 residues and had a mass ranging from 1,719 to 1,775 Da. Their partial amino acid sequences were determined by collision-induced dissociation tandem MS.