Ryberg Lab

Our research group study the diversity and evolution of fungi with a focus on the mushroom forming Basidiomycetes.

Short about us

We are interested in understanding why different groups have more species than others, how different traits have evolved, why fungi are so diverse, why different fungi are where they are, and the drivers of variation within species. We do field based collections, utilize herbarium materials, and do descriptions of taxa, as well as using phylogenetics, genomics and comparative methods to understand the diversity and how it has evolved.


Mushroom pictures - Link till Flickr

More about us and our research

Fungi is one of the most diverse kingdoms, however it has been estimated that only about 10% of all fungal species have been scientifically described so far. This leaves millions of species yet to discover. These undescribed species does not only include rare species in remote areas, but also common species in countries like Sweden, one of the most well investigated countries in the world. The cryptic nature of fungi, living hidden inside the substrate they feed from, also make them difficult to study and there is still a lot to learn about also about the known groups. At the same time many of the fungi are under threat of extinction, where 16% of the species that have been evaluated for red listing in Sweden have been put on the list.

In the Ryberg research group we work to learn more about these fascinating organisms. Not only to discover the diversity that is out there but also to understand it and how it has evolved. We focus on mushroom forming Basidiomycetes, one of the most diverse groups of Fungi. We use traditional methods to search for and describe new species, focusing on poorly studied areas as West Africa but also poorly studied groups such as the corticioid (skin like) Atheliales. We also use phylogenetics to understand the evolutionary connections between species and to reconstruct evolutionary events to understand the processes behind them. In addition we use genomic methods to better understand the biology of the fungi, and how they have diversified.

We are happy to interact with other groups and are part of a consortium of research groups working on fungi in the Uppsala/Stockholm area. We are also happy to welcome MSc and BSc whom are interested in studying fungi or evolutionary bioinformatics.

Group members

Research leader: Martin Ryberg
Group members: Faheema Khan, Roel Houdanon

  • The Ryberg group is working to understand the diversity of fungi, mostly from an evolutionary perspective. Even if only 90 thousand fungi have been scientifically described most estimates indicate that there are millions of species. Fungi are not only globally diverse but also if you look in a few cubic centimeters of soil you will find many different species of fungi even if you limit yourself to a single guild.