Heath E. O’Brien

Learn More
Fungi are an important and diverse component of soil communities, but these communities have proven difficult to study in conventional biotic surveys. We evaluated soil fungal diversity at two sites in a temperate forest using direct isolation of small-subunit and internal transcribed spacer (ITS) rRNA genes by PCR and high-throughput sequencing of cloned(More)
Because the number of fungal species (mycobionts) exceeds the number of algae and cyanobacteria (photobionts) found in lichens by more than two orders of magnitude, reciprocal one-to-one specificity between one fungal species and one photobiont across their entire distribution is not expected in this symbiotic system, and has not previously been observed.(More)
Hazelnut (Corylus avellana) decline disease in Greece and Italy is caused by the convergent evolution of two distantly related lineages of Pseudomonas syringae pv. avellanae (Pav). We sequenced the genomes of three Pav isolates to determine if their convergent virulence phenotype had a common genetic basis due to either genetic exchange between lineages or(More)
Next-generation genomic technology has both greatly accelerated the pace of genome research as well as increased our reliance on draft genome sequences. While groups such as the Genomics Standards Consortium have made strong efforts to promote genome standards there is a still a general lack of uniformity among published draft genomes, leading to challenges(More)
Pseudomonas syringae pv. phaseolicola (Pph) is a significant bacterial pathogen of agricultural crops, and phage Φ6 and other members of the dsRNA virus family Cystoviridae undergo lytic (virulent) infection of Pph, using the type IV pilus as the initial site of cellular attachment. Despite the popularity of Pph/phage Φ6 as a model system in evolutionary(More)
Lichens can either disperse sexually through fungal spores or asexually through vegetative propagules and fragmentation. Understanding how genetic variation in lichens is distributed across a landscape can be useful to infer dispersal and establishment events in space and time as well as the conditions needed for this establishment. Most studies have(More)
  • 1