Rui Zhang PhD Candidate

Major adviser: Greg Mueller, PhD

Research Interests: Systematics and diversity of mushrooms and other macrofungi; biogeography of macrofungi; macrofungi conservation

Current Research

My research combines systematic analysis of molecular data, biogeographic distribution and morphological characteristics of macrofungi to address questions about evolution, diversity and conservation of global macrofungi species. Fungi are one of the major clades of life with estimated 1.5 million species (Hawksworth 1991, 2001). If this estimation is correct, less than 5% of the fungi species have been scientifically described (Mueller and Schmit 2007). By combining morphological taxonomy, biogeographic data and molecular phylogeny, my experiments in macrofungi will help to identify fungi species within a genus and reveal the evolutionary relationship between them. My research will contribute to conserve macrofungi diversity and promote stability of forest ecosystem.

Current Projects

Systematics of the ectomycorrhizal Suillus species referred from ITS, nucSSU, nucLSU, mit SSU rDNA and RPB2 four locus

Phylogenetic and biogeographic relationships of Eastern Asian, European and North American disjunct Suillus species

References

  • David Leslie Hawksworth (1991) The fungal dimension of biodiversity: magnitude, significance, and conservation. Mycological Research 95:641–655
  • David Leslie Hawksworth (2001) The magnitude of fungal diversity: the 1.5 million species estimate revisited. Mycological Research 105:1422–1432
  • Gregory M Mueller and John Paul Schmit (2007) Fungal biodiversity: what do we know? What can we predict? Biodiversity Conservation 16:1-5