Butyrate, a small fatty acid, has an important role in the colon of ruminants and mammalians including the inhibition of inflammation and the regulation of cell proliferation. There is also growing evidence that butyrate is influencing the histone structure in mammalian cells by inhibition of histone deacetylation. Butyrate shows furthermore an antimicrobial activity against fungi, yeast and bacteria, which is linked to its toxicity at a high concentration. In fungi there are indications that butyrate induces the production of secondary metabolites potentially via inhibition of histone deacetylases. However, information about the influence of butyrate on growth, primary metabolite production and metabolism, besides lipid catabolism, in fungi is scarce. We have identified the filamentous fungus Penicillium (P.) restrictum as a susceptible target for butyrate treatment in an antimicrobial activity screen. The antimicrobial activity was detected only in the mycelium of the butyrate treated culture. We investigated the effect of butyrate ranging from low (0.001mM) to high (30mM), potentially toxic, concentrations on biomass and antimicrobial activity. Butyrate at high concentrations (3 and 30mM) significantly reduced the fungal biomass. In contrast P. restrictum treated with 0.03mM of butyrate showed the highest antimicrobial activity. We isolated three antimicrobial active compounds, active against Staphylococcus aureus, from P. restrictum cellular extracts treated with butyrate: adenine, its derivate hypoxanthine and the nucleoside derivate adenosine. Production of all three compounds was increased at low butyrate concentrations. Furthermore we found that butyrate influences the intracellular level of the adenine nucleoside derivate cAMP, an important signalling molecule in fungi and various organisms. In conclusion butyrate treatment increases the intracellular levels of adenine and its respective derivatives.