Research on forest mycology: significance and application of fungi

Subject description

The course will consist of selected topics concerning the systematics, genetics, ecology, and applications of ascomycetes, basidiomycetes, deuteromycetes and water moulds. Lectures will cover life histories, systematics, ecology, genetics, and practical applications of major phyla of Kingdom Fungi. Selected topisc will depend on the student interest: fungal community, fungal population in habitats and their characterization, Molecular techniques to analyze fungal population, Fungal degradation of plant materials, lignin and cellulose degrading fungi, importance of wood decay fungi in forest ecosystem. Fungal degradation of pesticides, plastic and heritage materials. Endosymbiosis – detection of endophytes of plants and their taxonomy, endophytic mutualism, endophytic infections, effects on insects and herbivores, reaction of endophyte-associated plants to microbial pathogens and endophytic strategies. General overview of the role of ectomycorhriza in forest ecosystems, successions of mycorrhizal fungi,Ectomycorrhizae, Ericoid, Arbutoid and Monotropoid mycorrhizae. Detection and diagnosis of plant pathogenesis- host range and symptomatology, morphology of the causal organism, selective media, biochemical markers-substrate metabolism, serological techniques, nucleic acid techniques, choice of diagnostic techniques.Microbiological methods- isolation, laboratory culture (media preparation, inoculation, incubation); microbial growth control (principles of asepsis- sterilization, sanitation and methods thereof), microscopy and staining of samples, extraction of secondary metabolites through different methods -qualitative and quantitative estimation.

The subject is taught in programs

Objectives and competences

Educational goals and anticipated study results: training for determinatoin and understanding of most important fungi in forest environment, their role in ecosystem, use and their biological characteristics. Introduction to the most appropriate methods in mycology and research on fungi.

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures will cover life histories, systematics, ecology, genetics, and practical applications of all major phylla of fungi. Power point presentations will focus on anatomy, morphology, and taxonomy of these fungi. Laboratory visit will include microscopy, work in the laboratory, sterile techniques and fungal culture.

Expected study results

Knowledge and understanding:

Students will acquire theoretical as well as practical knowledge concerning isolation, identification and the ecological role of common fungal genera/species important in forest ecosystem. They will master the techniques traditionally used in forest mycology and the novel approaches based on principal morphological, physiological and biochemical characteristics.

Basic sources and literature

           JURC D., PILTAVER A., OGRIS N., 2005. Glive Slovenije : vrste in razširjenost = Fungi of Slovenia : species and distribution. Studia forestalia Slovenica, 124. Ljubljana: Gozdarski inštitut Slovenije, Silva Slovenica: 497 str., ISBN 961-6425-24-2.

–           WEBSTER J., EEBBER R., 2007. Introduction to fungi. Cambridge University Press; 2 edition: 841 str., ISBN: 978-0-521-01483-0

–           SINCLAIR W.A., LYON H.H., JOHNSON W.T., 1987. Diseases of Trees and Shrubs.- Comstock Publ. Assoc., Cornell U. Press, Ithaca, N.Y., 574 str.

–           revijalni članki s področja,

–           tekoča periodika, druga učna gradiva

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University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Electrical Engineering Tržaška cesta 25, 1000 Ljubljana

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