Dr. Matthew E. Smith
As an Assistant Professor in the Department of Plant Pathology and the curator of the UF Fungal Herbarium (FLAS) I have duties in three main areas: research (60%), teaching (20%) and extension (20%). I teach the UF mycology course and am responsible for identifying unknown fungi for a variety of Florida stakeholders, including the UF Plant Disease Clinic, UF-IFAS Extension Service, and the UF Veterinary School. I am broadly interested in fungal ecology, evolution, and systematics. I have worked extensively on the biology and systematics of hypogeous fungi (“truffles”) and the ecology of plant-symbiotic ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi. However, I have also studied a variety of other fungal groups, including plant pathogens Armillaria mellea ("oak root fungus") andClaviceps purpurea (Ergot disease of grasses) as well as the nematode-destroying fungi (Orbiliales and other Ascomycota). My work combines the synergistic use of molecular, morphological, and culture-based methods in both laboratory and field settings.