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Kasson, Matt

Director of the International Culture Collection of (Vesicular) Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi (INVAM)
Associate Professor of Forest Pathology and Mycology

Dr. Kasson received his Ph.D. in Plant Pathology from the Pennsylvania State University where his research focused on using a native fungus, Verticillium nonalfalfae, as a biological control of the invasive tree, Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven). He also holds an A.A.S. from Paul Smiths College and a B.S. and M.S. from the University of Maine. His current research areas include fungal-arthropod interactions, biological control of invasive plants and pathogens, and the biology and ecology of historic and emerging diseases of forest trees. Dr. Kasson is currently the interim director of the International Culture Collection of (Vesicular) Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi (INVAM) and currently has research focused on the metabolites associated with interactions between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and their plant partners. Dr. Kasson teaches undergraduate courses on general plant pathology and forest pest management, and offers special topics courses for graduate students including advanced plant disease diagnostics.


  1. Kasson, M.T., Kasson, L.R., Wickert*, K.L., Davis, D.D., Stajich, J.E., (2019). Genome Sequence of a Lethal Vascular Wilt Fungus, Verticillium nonalfalfae, Biological Control of the Invasive Ailanthus altissima. Microbiology Resource Announcements, ( just-accepted).
  2. Stauder*, C.M., Nuss, D.L., Zhang, D.X., Double, M.L., MacDonald, W.L., Metheny*, A.M. and Kasson, M.T., (2019). Enhanced hypovirus transmission by engineered super donor strains of the chestnut blight fungus, Cryphonectria parasitica, into a natural population of strains exhibiting diverse vegetative compatibility genotypes. Virology, 528: 1-6.
  3. Wickert*, K.L., Metheny*, A.M., Davis, D., Geiser, D., Wenzel, J.W., Planinsek, D. and Kasson, M.T., (2018). First report of Fusarium stem canker on Pyrularia pubera, a rare native parasitic shrub in forests of southwestern Pennsylvania. Plant Disease, 102: 1852.
  4. Wickert*, K.L., O’Neal, E.S., Davis, D.D., Kasson, M.T., (2017). Seed Production, Viability, and Reproductive Limits of the Invasive Ailanthus altissima (Tree-of-Heaven) within Invaded Environments. Forests, 8: 226.
  5. Short**, D.P., O’Donnell, K., Stajich, J.E., Hulcr, J., Kijimoto, T., Berger*, M.C., Macias*, A.M., Spahr*, E.J., Bateman, C.C., Eskalen, A., Lynch, S.C., Cognato, A. I., Cooperband, M. F., Kasson, M.T., (2017). PCR Multiplexes Discriminate Fusarium Symbionts of Invasive Euwallacea Ambrosia Beetles that Inflict Damage on Numerous Tree Species Throughout the United States. Plant Disease, 101: 233-240.
  6. Kasson, M.T., Wickert*, K.L., Stauder*, C.M., Macias*, A.M., Berger*, M.C., Simmons, D.R., Short**, D.P., DeVallance, D.B. and Hulcr, J., (2016). Mutualism with aggressive wood-degrading Flavodon ambrosius (Polyporales) facilitates niche expansion and communal social structure in Ambrosiophilus ambrosia beetles. Fungal Ecology, 23: 86-96.
  7. *Denotes graduate student/ **post-doc
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