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Fantastic yeasts and where to find them!

Event schedule details

Saturday 29 June

15.00-15.45

Event location details

Flett Lecture Theatre

Natural History Museum

150,000 species of fungi have been catalogued around the world, but, as a Kingdom which are found from the tropics to the poles, are creative in their ability to adapt to new environments, unfussy in their choice of host and blessed with strong resistant spores, estimates suggest there are as many as five million awaiting discovery. And in this deep well of biodiversity lurk some terrifying diseases…

Mat Fisher has spent his career travelling the world exploring this deep well of untapped biodiversity in order to track and tackle the diseases they cause. He will talk about how his team have discovered a new Zambian species causing a devastating meningitis and tracked the destructive power of the amphibian-destroying chytrid, dubbed the ‘doomsday fungus’, responsible for the worst disease ever recorded.

Mat and his team’s work takes them to the rainforests of Guyana, Madagascar and Taiwan; to the high mountains of the Pyrenees and Alps and the tropical forests of Africa. Even at home in the intensive care units of London’s hospitals, discoveries await… In his Great Expeditions talk he will tell tales from his travels and explain the importance of exploring the fungi kingdom to avoid future outbreaks of planet-wide infectious diseases.

This is part of our ‘Great Expeditions’ talks series. Take a look at the other talks in this series.


This event is free but booking is available to guarantee a place. Booking will open in June.

To be the first to know when booking opens and to receive other important updates, make sure you register for the Festival.

Event categories

  • Adults
  • Talk