B.S., Ecology & Environmental Biology, Appalachian State University
M.S., Conservation Ecology & Sustainable Development, University of Georgia
Ph.D., Biology, Duke University
Department of Plant, Soil & Microbial Sciences
3270 Molecular Plant Science Building
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI, 48824
Phone: (517) 884-6958
Our lab studies the ecology and evolution of plant-fungal-bacterial associations, with a particular interest in belowground root associated fungi including truffles, mushrooms & molds. These organisms provide important links between plants and soils, and are functionally important to plant health and nutrition as well as nutrient cycles and the flow of energy through terrestrial ecosystems.
Our research makes use of phylogenetics, high-throughput sequencing, isotope tracers and –omics approaches to better understand the (1) phylogenetic and functional diversity of root-associated fungi, (2) environmental and genetic factors that structure root microbiome communities, and (3) the evolution and functional relevance of bacterial symbionts of fungi. Our lab research has applications pertinent to agriculture, forestry, and in the sustainability of terrestrial life support systems.