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Joseph W. Spatafora

Joey Spatafora

Ph.D., 1992, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge

Faculty of Center for Genome Research and Biocomputing


Office/Lab: Cordley 4092/4091
Phone: 541-737-5304/5305

Research Area

Mycology; systematics and evolutionary biology of fungi

Description of Research

Research in our laboratory is focused on molecular systematics and population genetics of fungi. Particular emphases include the evolutionary biology of fungal symbioses as they relates to the evolution of host shifts, the phylogenetic integration of ecologically disparate groups of fungi, and population genetics of closely related organisms with different reproductive life histories.

Research Group Members

Faculty Research Assistants/Associates/Post docs


Graduate Students 

Derek Johnson (PhD expected 2016)
Dabao Lu (MS expected 2015)


BOT 461/561 Mycology

BOT 490/590 Special Topics in Mycology

BOT 505 Mouldy Thursday: OSU Mycology Discussion Group

BI 445/545 Evolution

Related Links

Lab page

"Tree of Life", Ascomycete Root Page

Assembling the Fungal Tree of Life (AFTOL)

An Electronic Monograph of Cordyceps and Related Fungi

Selected Publications

(since 2006)

Quandt CA, Kohler A, Hesse C, Sharpton T, Martin F and JW Spatafora.  2015.Metagenome sequence of Elaphomyces granulatus from sporocarp tissue reveals Ascomycota ectomycorrhizal fingerprints of genome expansion and a Proteobacteria rich microbiome.  Environmental Microbiology. doi:10.1111/1462-2920.12840.

Nagy LG, Ohm RA, KovácsGM, Floudas D, Riley R, Gácser A, Sipiczki M, Davis JM, Doty SL, de Hoog GS, Lang BF, Spatafora JW, Martin FB, Grigoriev IV and DS Hibbett.  2014. Latent homology and convergent regulatory evolution underlies the repeated emergence of yeasts.  Nature Communications 5: 4471. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5471.

Toome M. Kuo A, Henrissat B, Lipzen A, Tritt A, Yoshinaga Y, Zane M, Barry K, Grigoriev I, Spatafora JW and MC Aime.  2014.  Draft genome sequence of a rare smut relative, Tilletaria anomala UBC 951.  Genome Announcements 2(3):e00539-14. doi:10.1128/genomeA.00539-14.

Quandt CA, Kepler RM, Gams W, Araújo JPM, Ban S, Evans HC, Hughes D, HumberR, Hywel-JonesN, Li Z, Luangsa-ardJJ, RehnerSA, SanjuanT, SatoH, ShresthaB, SungG-H, YaoY-J, ZareR and JW Spatafora. 2014.Phylogenetic-based nomenclatural proposals for Ophiocordycipitaceae (Hypocreales) with new combinations in Tolypocladium.  IMA Fungus 5: 121-134.

Myburg, A.A., Grattapaglia, D., Tuskan, G.A. and 76 other authors. 2014. The genome of Eucalyptus grandis – a global tree for fiber and energy.  Nature 510: 356-362.

Rämä, T., Nordén, J., Davey, M.L., Mathiassen, G.H., Spatafora, J.W. and H. Kauserud.  2014.  Fungi ahoy! Diversity on marine wooden substrates in the high North.  Fungal Ecology 8: 46-58.

Sanjuan, T., Tabima, J., Restrepo, S., Læssøe, T., Spatafora, J.W. and A.E. Franco-Molano.  2014.  Entomopathogens of Amazonian stick insects and locusts are members of the Beauveria species complex (Cordyceps sensu stricto).  Mycologia 106: 260-275.

Toome, M., Ohm, R.A., Riley, R.W., James, T.Y., Lazarus, K.L., Henrisaat, B., Albu, S., Boyd, A., Chow, J., Clum, A., Heller, G., Lipzen, A., Nolan, M., Sandor, L., Zvenigorodsky, N., Grigoriev, I.V., Spatafora, J.W. and M.C. Aime.  2014. Genome sequencing provides insight into the reproductive biology, nutritional mode and ploidy of the fern pathogen Mixia osmundae. New Phytologist 202: 554-564.

Mujic. A.B., Hosaka, K. and J.W. SpataforaRhizopogon togasawarensis sp. nov., the first report of Rhizopogon associated with an Asian species of Pseudotsuga.  2014. Mycologia 106: 105-112.

Hibbett, D.S, Stajich, J.E., and J.W. Spatafora.  2013.  Towards Genome-Enabled Mycology.  Mycologia 105: 1339-1349.

Bushley, K.E., Li, Y., Wang, W.-J., Wang, X.-L., Jiao, L., Spatafora, J.W. and Y.-J. Yao.  2013. Isolation of the MAT1-1 mating type idiomorph and evidence for selfing in the Chinese medicinal fungus Ophiocordyceps sinensis.  Fungal Biology 117: 599-610.

Kepler, R.M., Ban, S., Nakagiri, A., Bischoff, J., Hywel-Jones, N. and J.W. Spatafora. 2013.  Phylogenetic placement of hypocrealean insect pathogens in the genus Polycephalomyces: an application of one fungus one name. Fungal Biology 117: 611-622.

Dunham, S., Mujic, A.B., Spatafora, J.W. and A. Kretzer.  2013. Within-population structure differs between two sympatric sister-species of ectomycorrhizal fungi, Rhizopogon vinicolor and R. vesiculosus. Mycologia 105: 814-826.

Bushley, K.E., Rajani. R., Jasiwal, P., Cumbie, J.S., Nonogaki, M., Boyd, A.E., Owensby, C.A., Knaus, B.J., Elser, J., Miller, D., Di, Y., McPhail, K.L. and J.W. Spatafora.  2013.  The Genome of Tolypocladium inflatum: Evolution, Organization and Expression of the Cyclosporin Biosynthetic Gene Cluster.  PLoS Genetics 9(6): e1003496. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1003496

Hosaka, K., Castellano, M.A., and J.W. Spatafora. Biogeography of the Hysterangiales (Phallomycetidae, Basidiomycota). 2008. Mycological Research 112: 448-462.

Zuccaro, A., Schoch, C.L., Spatafora, J.W., Kohlmeyer, J., Draeger, S., and J.I. Mitchell. 2008. Detection and identification of predominant fungi associated with the brown seaweed Fucus serratus , using different environmental analysis. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 74: 931-941.

Andrie, R.M., Schoch, C.L., Hedges, R., Spatafora, J.W. and L.M. Ciufetti. 2008. Homologs of ToxB, a host-selective toxin gene from Pyrenophora tritici-repentis, are present in the genome of sister-species Pyrenophora bromi and other members of the Ascomycota. Fungal Genetics and Biology 45: 363-377.

Hane, J.K., Lowe, R.G.T., Solomon, P.S., Tan, K.-C., Schoch, C.L., Spatafora, J.W., Crous, P.W., Kodira, C., Birren, B.W., Torriani, S.F.F., McDonald, B.A. and R. P. Oliver. 2007. Dothideomycete-plant interactions illuminated by genome sequencing and EST analysis of the wheat pathogen Stagonospora nodorum . The Plant Cell 19: 3347-3368.

Dunham, S., Larson, K.H., and J.W. Spatafora. 2007. Species richness and community composition of mat-forming ectomycorrhizal fungi in old- and second-growth Douglas-fir forests of the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest, Oregon, USA. Mycorrhiza 17: 633-645.

Sung, G.-H., J.-M. Sung, N.L. Hywel-Jones and J.W. Spatafora. 2007. A multi-gene phylogeny of Clavicipitaceae (Ascomycota, Fungi): Identification of localized incongruence using a combinational bootstrap approach. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 44: 1204-1223.

Hibbett, D.S. Binder, M., Bischoff, J.F., Blackwell, M., Cannon, P.F., Eriksson, O.E., Huhndorf, S., James, T.Y., Kirk, P.M., Lucking, R., Lumbsch, H.T., Lutzoni, F.L., Matheny, P.B., McLaughlin, D.J., Powell, M.J., Redhead, S., Schoch, C.L., Spatafora, J.W., Stalpers, J.A., Vilgalys, R., Aime, M.C., Aptroot, A., Bauer, R., Begerow, D., Benny, G.L., Castlebury, L.A., Crous, P.W., Dai, Y.-C., Gams, W., Geiser, D.M., Griffith, G.W., Gueidan, C., Hawksworth, D.L., Hestmark, G., Hosaka, K., Humber, R.A., Hyde, K.D., Ironside, J.E., Koljag, U., Kurtzman, C.P., Larsson, K.-H., Lichtwardt, R., Longcore, J., Miadlikowska, J., Miller, A., Moncalvo, J.-M., Mozley-Standridge, S., Oberwinkler, F., Parmasto, E., Reeb, V., Rogers, J.D., Roux, C., Ryvarden, L., Sampaio, J.P., Schußler, A., Sugiyama, J., Thorn, R.G., Tibell, L., Untereiner, W.A., Walker, C., Wang, Z., Weir, A., Weiss, M., White, M.M., Winka, K., Yao, Y.-J., and Zhang, N. 2007. A higher-level phylogenetic classification of the Fungi. Mycological Research 111: 509-547.

Sung, G.-H., Hywel-Jones, N.L., Sung, J.-M., Luangsa-ard, J.J., Shrestha, B. and J.W. Spatafora. 2007. Phylogenetic classification of Cordyceps and the clavicipitaceous fungi. Studies in Mycology 57: 5-59.

Spatafora, J.W., G.-H. Sung, N.L. Hywel-Jones, J.-M. Sung and J.F. White. 2007. Phylogenetic evidence for an animal pathogen origin of ergot and the grass endophytes. Molecular Ecology 16: 1701-1171.

Schoch, C.L., Sung, G.-H., Volkmann-Kohlmeyer, B., Kohlmeyer, J. and Spatafora, J.W. 2007. Novel marine fungal lineages in the Hypocreomycetidae. Mycological Research 111: 154-162.

Blackwell, M., D.S. Hibbett, J.W. Taylor, and J.W. Spatafora. 2006. Research Coordination Networks: A Phylogeny for Kingdom Fungi (Deep Hypha). Mycologia 98: 829-837.

Wang Z., Johnston P.R., Takamatsu S., Spatafora J.W. and Hibbett D.S. 2006. Phylogenetic classification of the Leotiomycetes based on rDNA data. Mycologia 98: 1067-1077.  

Schoch, C.L., Shoemaker, R.A., Seifert, K.A., Hambleton, S., Spatafora, J.W., Crous, P.W. 2006. A multigene phylogeny of the Dothideomycetes using four nuclear loci. Mycologia 1043-1054.

Hosaka, K., Bates, S.T., Beever, R.E., Castellano, M.A., Colgan, W. III, Domínguez, L.S., Nouhra, E.R., Geml, J., Giachini, A.J., Kenney, S.R., Simpson, N.B., Spatafora, J.W., and Trappe, J.M. 2006. Molecular phylogenetics of the gomphoid-phalloid fungi with an establishment of the new subclass Phallomycetidae and two new orders. Mycologia 98: 949-959.

Spatafora, J.W., Johnson, D., Sung, G.-H., Hosaka, K., O'Rourke, B., Serdani, M., Spotts, R., Lutzoni, F., Hofstetter, V., Fraker, E., Gueidan, C., Miadlikowska, J., Reeb , V., Lumbsch, T., Lücking, R., Schmitt, I., Aptroot, A., Roux, C., Miller, A., Geiser, D., Hafellner, J., Hestmark, G., Arnold, A.E., Büdel, B., Rauhut, A., Hewitt, D., Untereiner, W., Cole, M.S., Scheidegger, C., Schultz, M., Sipman., H. and Schoch, C. 2006. A five-gene phylogenetic analysis of the Pezizomycotina. Mycologia 98: 1020-1030.

James, T.Y., Kauff, F., Schoch, C., Matheny, P.B., Hofstetter, V., Cox, C.J., Celio , G. , Gueidan , C. , Fraker, E., Miadlikowska , J. , Lumbsch, H.T., Rauhut, A., Reeb, V., Arnold , A.E. , Amtoft , A. , Stajich, J.E., Hosaka , K. , Sung, G.-H., Johnson , D. , O'Rourke , B. , Crockett , M. , Binder , M. , Curtis , J.M. , Slot , J.C. , Wang , Z. , Wilson, A.W., Schußler , A. , Longcore , J.E. , O'Donnell , K. , Mozley-Standridge , S. , Porter , D. , Letcher , P.M. , Powell, M.J., Taylor, J.W., White, M.M., Griffith , G.W. , Davies , D.R. , Humber , R.A. , Morton, J.B., Sugiyama , J. , Rossman , A.Y. , Rogers , J.D. , Pfister , D.H. , Hewitt , D. , Hansen , K. , Hambleton , S. , Shoemaker , R.A. , Kohlmeyer , J. , Volkmann-Kohlmeyer , B. , Spotts , R.A. , Serdani , M. , Crous , P.W. , Hughes , K.W. , Matsuura , K. , Langer , E. , Langer , G. , Untereiner , W.A. , Lucking , R. , Budel , B. , Geiser , D.M. , Aptroot , A. , Diederich , P. , Schmitt , I. , Schultz , M. , Yahr , R. , Hibbett , D.S. , Lutzoni , F. , McLaughlin , D.J. , Spatafora , J.W. and Vilgalys , R. 2006. Reconstructing the early evolution of Fungi using a six-gene phylogeny. Nature 443: 818-822 .

Wang, Z., Binder, M., Schoch, C., Johnston , P.R., Spatafora, J.W., and Hibbett, D.S. 2006. Evolution of helotialean fungi (Leotiomycetes, Pezizomycotina): a nuclear rDNA phylogeny. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 41: 295-312.

Robbertse, B., J. Reeves, C. Schoch, and J.W. Spatafora. 2006. A phylogenomic analysis of the Ascomycota. Fungal Genetics and Biology 43: 715-725.

Dunn, S.R., W.S. Phillips, J.W. Spatafora, D.R. Green and V.M. Weis. 2006.  Highly conserved caspase and Bcl-2 homologues from the sea anemone Aiptasia pallida : Lower metazoans as models for the study of apoptosis evolution. Journal of Molecular Evolution 63: 95-107.

Schoch, C., J. Kohlmeyer, B. Volkmann-Kohlmeer, C.K.M. Tsui and J.W. Spatafora. 2006. Glomeroblus gelineus is a member of the Ostropales. Mycological Research 110: 257-263.