Biodegradation of two superabsorbent polymers, a crosslinked, insoluble polyacrylate and an insoluble polyacrylate/ polyacrylamide copolymer, in soil by the white-rot fungus, Phanerochaete chrysosporium was investigated. The polymers were both solubilized and mineralized by the fungus but solubilization and mineralization of the copolymer was much more rapid than of the polyacrylate. Soil microbes poorly solublized the polymers and were unable to mineralize either intact polymer. However, soil microbes cooperated with the fungus during polymer degradation in soil, with the fungus solubilizing the polymers and the soil microbes stimulating mineralization. Further, soil microbes were able to significantly mineralize both polymers after solubilization by P. chrysosporium grown under conditions that produced fungal peroxidases or cellobiose dehydrogenase, or after solubilization by photochemically generated Fenton reagent. The results suggest that biodegradation of these polymers in soil is best under conditions that maximize solubilization.