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Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities

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What might we uncover in an unknown biosphere?

The Fungal Kingdom is remarkable in the breadth and depth of its impact on life on Earth. Its six million species produce everything from edible mushrooms to infectious disease, and have major impacts on human health, the food supply, and the environment.

The harm that fungi can do is startling, causing epidemics in staple crops that feed billions and producing toxins that contaminate food supplies and cause cancer. At the same time, fungi are tremendously beneficial. They produce antibiotics such as penicillin, as well as immunosuppressive drugs that inhibit transplant rejection and drugs that reduce the risk of heart disease. They are crucial to the production of food. And fungi play an important role in the health of plants.

The complexity of the Fungal Kingdom demands a multidisciplinary approach. This CIFAR team includes diverse experts to understand the unique facets of fungal biology and develop new strategies to mitigate the threats posed by fungi and harness their extraordinary potential.

Detailed Program Description for Applicants to the CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars Program, 2021-2023

 

This new report, One Health: Fungal Pathogens of Humans, Animals, and Plants, highlights the remarkable advances in the field and provides updated recommendations to address scientific and public health challenges today.

Program member authors: Arturo Casadevall, John W. Taylor, Joseph Heitman, and Leah Cowen

Founded

2019

Interdisciplinary Collaboration

Molecular genetics
Microbiology
Epidemiology
Bioinformatics
Public Health
Biochemistry

CIFAR Contact

Kate Geddie

Fellows & Advisors

Program Directors

Leah E. Cowen

Program Co-Director

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of Toronto
Canada

Joseph Heitman

Program Co-Director

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
Duke University
United States
Fellows

David S. Blehert

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
National Wildlife Health Center
U.S. Geological Survey
United States

Charles M. Boone

Program Co-Director
Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
Genetic Networks
University of Toronto
Canada

Christina A. Cuomo

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
Broad Institute
United States

Matthew C. Fisher

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
Imperial College London
United Kingdom

Sarah Jane Gurr

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of Exeter
United Kingdom

Hailing Jin

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of California Riverside
United States

Bruce Klein

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of Wisconsin-Madison
United States

James Kronstad

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of British Columbia
Canada

Don Sheppard

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
McGill University
Canada

Jason E. Stajich

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of California Riverside
United States

Eva H. Stukenbrock

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
Christian-Albrechts University of Kiel
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology
Germany

Gerard Wright

Fellow

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
McMaster University
Canada
Advisors

Arturo Casadevall

Advisory Committee Chair

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
John Hopkins University
United States

David Denning

Advisor

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of Manchester
United Kingdom

Neil Gow

Advisor

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of Exeter
United Kingdom

Regine Kahmann

Advisor

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology
Germany

John Taylor

Advisor

Fungal Kingdom: Threats & Opportunities
University of California Berkeley
United States

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