Ep. 72: Porcini, Systematics of Family Boletaceae & Fungus Farming Ants (feat. Bryn Dentinger PhD)

Today on Mushroom Hour we are joined by the distinguished Bryn Dentinger, Curator of Mycology at the Natural History Museum of Utah and Associate Professor in the Biology Department at the University of Utah. Bryn hails from Minnesota and attended the University of Minnesota for his PhD, where he studied the molecular systematics of clavarioid and porcini mushrooms. He has carried out fieldwork all over the world, including exciting collecting trips to Vietnam, Brazil, and Cameroon. He spent years in the UK as the Head of Mycology at the world-renowned Kew Gardens and since 2003 has published dozens of research papers in respected scientific journals around the world. Now running the Dentinger lab in Utah, he continues to pursue molecular systematics research on mushrooms and other fungi around the world, combining fieldwork, collections, and modern genomic tools, while maintaining a keen interest in home-brewing and whisky. Bryn’s work has overlapped with many other guests on the Mushroom Hour and has been one of the most recommended guests.   

Topics Covered:

  • Early Inspirations to Study Fungi  
  • Introduction to Porcini  
  • Definition of Porcini (Species), Boletus (Genus), Boletaceae (Family)  
  • Family Boletaceae Phylogeny & Radiative Evolutionary Event   
  • Evolutionary Biology Behind Physical Characteristics of Fungi  
  • World’s Most Comprehensive Genetic Analysis of Family Boletacae  
  • Beyond PCR - Emerging Frontiers of Genetic Sequencing  
  • Importance of Citizen Scientists in Biodiversity Research  
  • Sequencing Existing Fungarium and Herbarium Collections   
  • Species of Fungus Farming Ants  
  • "Microbial Garden" Ant/Fungus/Bacteria Ecosystems  
  • Divergent Evolution of Fungus Farming Ants  
  • Evolutionary Significance of the Chemical Psilocybin  
  • Current and Future Research at the Dentinger Lab  

Episode Resources:

Tags: mushroomsfungisciencenaturemycologyevolution

1 comment

  • Really enjoyed the podcast with Bryn. Just curious, no bio info on you on the website or in the pod summary?


    David Rust

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