Michael R. McGinnis, Ph.D.
Michael R. McGinnis, Ph.D.

Departments of Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology,
and Dermatology
WHO Collaborating Center for Tropical Diseases
Ph.D., Iowa State University
Postdoctorate, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

My primary area of research deals with the biosystematics and morphogenesis of pleomorphic dematiaceous fungi that cause opportunistic mycotic infections.  In addition, the effect of microgravity upon fundamental processes of yeasts is of special interest.

Research activities are orientated towards the integration of anamorphic, teleomorphic, and holomorphic species concepts into a dynamic classification system for the pleomorphic dematiaceous yeasts and moulds.  This will be built upon gene sequence data and derived phylogenic relationships.  Morphogenesis, conidiogenesis, and molecular tools will provide a clearer understanding of the basic biology of this group of variable microorganisms.  Such an understanding will be useful for investigating virulence factors involved when these fungi serve as opportunistic pathogens.

Microgravity research will be conducted using the bioreactor device and on a space shuttle flight.  The effect of microgravity upon intracellular evolution, sensitivity of fungi to antifungal drugs, and basic cellular developmental processes will be characterized.