College of Arts & Sciences

Department of Biology




Contact Information

Dr. Juan Luis Mata

University of South Alabama

Department of Biological Sciences, LSCB 124

307 University Blvd. N

Mobile, AL 36688-0002


Phone: 251-460-6331 (leave message)

Fax: 251-414-8220




Biographic sketch
I was born in a middle class family raised by two microbiologist parents. Born in the USA, but with Costa Rican blood, I spent my childhood in Guatemala and finished high school and completed my B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Biology in Costa Rica. Then, I was accepted at the University of Tennessee where I earned my Ph.D. Since 2004 I have been at the University of South Alabama, in Mobile, Al.

Since my sophomore year at the University of Costa Rica, I had decided I wanted to study mycology. Thanks to my mycology professor, I learned about a project on biodiversity of macrofungi that was about to start in Costa Rica. After an interview with the project PIs and passing the admission exam I was accepted in the graduate studies program in biology. My master's thesis dealt with taxonomy and ecology Agaricales mushrooms in an oak forest on the slopes of Pos Volcano. This study was based on a three-year plot sampling inventory. As a graduate student, I was lucky to meet a well-known mycologist who later became my academic mentor. At the UT Knoxville, my mycological research culminated in a Ph.D. dissertation on fungal taxonomy and systematics of the mushroom genera Lentinula, Gymnopus, and Rhodocollybia from the Talamanca Mountains of Costa Rica. At UTK, I continued as a postdoc rounding data for morphological and phylogenetic studies of worldwide Gymnopus and allied genera. I also started to study the Megacollybia platyphylla species complex, a project that is still under way.

Here at USA, I have started fungal surveys in the Mobile River Basin, mostly in forested areas near Mobile Bay. Also, I continue with monographic studies of collybioid genera. And, gradually I am becoming more involved in ecological, physiological, and genetic studies with the American Shiitake (Lentinula raphanica).




          My Curriculum Vitae

          Directed Studies in Mycology

Mycological Collections

Please feel free to email me Juan Luis Mata.

Last updated June 22, 2006.

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