Boyd Professor, emerita Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin, 1973 Mycology email
My research involves fungi associated with arthropods. The problems associated with spore dispersal of fungi to particular limited substrates such as dung, have led to a broader investigation of spore dispersal by arthropods. Fungi associated with mites phoretic on beetles are especially important to provide new clues to the evolution of certain entomogenous fungi.
More recently we have been interested in yeasts from the gut of beetles and other insects. Several newly enlarged ascomycete yeast clades are often found in the gut of mushroom-feeding beetles. Other yeasts, particularly unusual xylose-fermenters, are common in the gut of wood-ingesting beetles.
In addition I have been interested in the unique Gulf Coastal Plain fungi, particularly wood-rotting basidiomycetes and fungi associated with arthropods. Fungi are studied using a variety of techniques including field and cultural studies, electron microscopy, and nucleic acid sequencing.