Fungal Diversity

Fungi are eukaryotic organisms which cannot produce their own energy and depend on enzymatic processes for metabolic activity to absorb nutrition. Its kingdom encompasses tremendous biological diversity, with members covering a wide range of lifestyles, forms, habitats, and sizes. Fungi includes thousands of lineages, from the mushroom forming fungi, to yeasts, rusts, smuts and moulds and have most indispensable ecological roles in decomposition processes, but are also involved in important symbiotic associations and are known to include noteworthy parasites. Recent estimates point to 1.5 million fungal species on the planet of which only ~7% have been described. Furthermore, fungi assemble in very species-rich communities, making the full documentation of fungal diversity in targeted sites a particularly challenging task. Advances in molecular techniques have formed the base for a boost in studies concerning fungal diversity, and the fast development of next generation sequencing technologies promises further progress towards a more thorough understanding of fungal diversity and function. The current limited knowledge of fungal diversity and biology complicates an assessment of the conservation status of fungal species and has hindered the development of conservation tools and efforts. There have been, however, recent concerted efforts to bring fungi to conservation debates, such as the newly created society for the conservation of fungi.

  • Fungal classification
  • Biodiversity, and systematic
  • Marine fungi
  • Molecular phylogeny
  • The genomic revolution

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