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Postdoctoral Fellow

Department

Microbiology and Plant Pathology
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Sanibonani! I'm interested in the evolution and diversity of rust fungi. In particular my research questions focus on why rust fungi are effective pathogens, how host jumps have played a role in their evolution, and whether there is plasticity in their lifecycles.

I am developing an interactive key to the rust fungi of southern Africa (you can view a preview here), similar to one made during my previous postdoc on Australian rust fungi.  Everyone is welcome to be involved with the development of this resource, so if you can collect or photograph rust fungi, get on board!

I have a background in biosecurity and believe that genomics will redefine how risk is assessed in future quarantine responses. We will sequence the genomes of four rust fungi in South Africa to address my broad research questions, and use rust fungi as a model for the development of innovative tools to implement genome-based classification of biosecurity risks.

If you like fungal artwork, you're not alone. You can check out some Fusarium, Puccinia and Sphaerophragmium art here. And if you like bad funk music about bacteria, fungi and plant pathology (who doesn't?), check out the songs to the left :)

Maak n jol, jol, jol!

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Publication
Granados GM, McTaggart AR, Barnes I, Rodas CA, Roux J, Wingfield MJ. (2017) The pandemic biotype of Austropuccinia psidii discovered in South America. Australasian Plant Pathology 10.1007/s13313-017-0488-x
Marin-Felix Y, Groenewald JZ, Cai L, Chen Q, Marincowitz S, Barnes I, Bensch K, Braun U, Camporesi E, Damm U, De Beer ZW, Dissanayake A, Edwards J, Giraldo A, Hernández-Restrepo M, Hyde KD, Jayawardena RS, Lombard L, Luangsa-ard J, McTaggart AR, Rossman AY, Sandoval-Denis M, Shen M, Shivas RG, Tan YP, van der Linde EJ, Wingfield MJ, Wood AR, Zhang JQ, Zhang Y, Crous PW. (2017) Genera of phytopathogenic fungi: GOPHY 1. Studies in Mycology 10.1016/j.simyco.2017.04.002
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG, Boekhout T, Oberwinkler F, Vánky K, Pennycook SR, Begerow D. (2016) Mycosarcoma (Ustilaginaceae), a resurrected generic name for corn smut (Ustilago maydis) and its close relatives with hypertrophied, tubular sori. IMA Fungus 7(2):309-315. 10.5598/imafungus.2016.07.02.10 PDF
Roux J, Granados GM, Shuey L, Barnes I, Wingfield MJ, McTaggart AR. (2016) A unique genotype of the rust pathogen, Puccinia psidii, on Myrtaceae in South Africa. Australasian Plant Pathology 45:645-652. 10.1007/s13313-016-0447-y
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG, Doungsa-ard C, Weese TL, Beasley DR, Hall BH, Metcalf DA, Geering ADW. (2016) Identification of rust fungi (Pucciniales) on species of Allium in Australia. Australasian Plant Pathology 10.1007/s13313-016-0445-0
Wingfield BD, Ambler JM, Coetzee MPA, De Beer ZW, Duong TA, Joubert F, Hammerbacher A, McTaggart AR, Naidoo K, Nguyen HDT, Ponomareva E, Santana QS, Seifert KA, Steenkamp ET, Trollip C, Van der Nest MA, Visagie CM, Wilken PM, Wingfield MJ, Yilmaz N. (2016) IMA Genome-F 6: Draft genome sequences of Armillaria fuscipes, Ceratocystiopsis minuta, Ceratocystis adiposa, Endoconidiophora laricicola, E. polonica and Penicillium freii DAOMC 242723. IMA Fungus 7(1):217-227. 10.5598/imafungus.2016.07.01.11 PDF
McTaggart AR, van der Nest MA, Steenkamp ET, Roux J, Slippers B, Shuey LS, Wingfield MJ, Drenth A. (2016) Fungal Genomics Challenges the Dogma of Name-Based Biosecurity. PLoS Pathogens 12(5):e1005475. 10.1371/journal.ppat.1005475 PDF
McTaggart AR, Roux J, Granados GM, Gafur A, Tarrigan M, Santhakumar P, Wingfield MJ. (2016) Rust (Puccinia psidii) recorded in Indonesia poses a threat to forests and forestry in South-East Asia. Australasian Plant Pathology 45(1):83-89. 10.1007/s13313-015-0386-z
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG, van der Nest MA, Roux J, Wingfield BD, Wingfield MJ. (2016) Host jumps shaped the diversity of extant rust fungi (Pucciniales). New Phytologist 209(3):1149-1158. 10.1111/nph.13686
van der Nest MA, Wingfield MJ, Wilken PM, Coetzee MPA, Naidoo K, Roodt D, Sauerman E, Godlonton T, Trollip C, McTaggart AR, Steenkamp ET, Wingfield BD. (2015) Saprophytic and pathogenic fungi in the Ceratocystidaceae differ in their ability to metabolize plant-derived sucrose. BMC Evolutionary Biology 15:273. 10.1186/s12862-015-0550-7 PDF
Rodas CA, Roux J, Maier W, Granados GM, Bolaños MD, McTaggart AR, Wingfield MJ. (2015) First report of Puccinia psidii on Corymbia citriodora and Eucalyptus in Colombia. Forest Pathology 45(6):534–536. 10.1111/efp.12223
McTaggart AR, Doungsa-ard C, Wingfield MJ, Roux J. (2015) Uromycladium acaciae, the cause of a sudden, severe disease epidemic on Acacia mearnsii in South Africa. Australasian Plant Pathology 44(6):637-645. 10.1007/s13313-015-0381-4
Carnegie AJ, Shuey LS, McTaggart AR, Shivas RG. (2015) First Record of Thyronectria pinicola on Pinus radiata in Australia. Plant Disease 99(8):1182. 10.1094/PDIS-02-15-0187-PDN
Maier W, McTaggart AR, Roux J, Wingfield MJ. (2015) Phakopsora myrtacearum sp. nov., a newly described rust (Pucciniales) on eucalypts in eastern and southern Africa. Plant Pathology 65(2):189-195. 10.1111/ppa.12406
McTaggart AR, Doungsa-ard C, Geering ADW, Aime MC, Shivas RG. (2015) A co-evolutionary relationship exists between Endoraecium (Pucciniales) and its Acacia hosts in Australia. Persoonia 10.3767/003158515X687588
McTaggart AR, Shuey LS, McKenna SR, Davis RI, Shivas RG. (2015) Plasmopara sphagneticolae sp. nov. (Peronosporales) on Sphagneticola (Asteraceae) in Australia. Australasian Plant Pathology 44(1):81–85. 10.1007/s13313-014-0323-6
McTaggart AR, Geering ADW, Shivas RG. (2014) Uredinopsis pteridis and Desmella aneimiae, the first rust fungi (Pucciniales) reported on ferns (Pteridophyta) in Australia. Australasian Plant Disease Notes 9:1–5. 10.1007/s13314-014-0149-7
McTaggart AR, Geering ADW, Shivas RG. (2014) The rusts on Goodeniaceae and Stylidiaceae. Mycological Progress 13(4):1017-1025. 10.1007/s11557-014-0989-8
McTaggart AR, Geering ADW, Shivas RG. (2013) Thekopsora minima, the cause of blueberry rust in Australia. Australasian Plant Disease Notes 8:81–83. 10.1007/s13314-013-0101-2
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG, Geering ADW, Vánky K, Scharaschkin T. (2012) A review of the Ustilago-Sporisorium-Macalpinomyces complex. Persoonia 29:55–62.
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG, Geering ADW, Callaghan B, Vánky K, Scharaschkin T. (2012) Soral synapomorphies are significant for the systematics of the Ustilago-Sporisorium-Macalpinomyces complex (Ustilaginaceae). Persoonia 29:63–77.
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG, Geering ADW, Vánky K, Scharaschkin T. (2012) Taxonomic revision of Ustilago, Sporisorium and Macalpinomyces. Persoonia 29:116–132.
McTaggart AR, Ryley MJ, Shivas RG. (2012) First report of the powdery mildew Erysiphe diffusa on soybean in Australia. Australasian Plant Disease Notes 7:127–129.
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG. (2010) Pseudocercospora adansoniae. Persoonia 24:134–135.
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG. (2009) Macalpinomyces mackinlayi. Persoonia 23:186–187.
McTaggart AR, Shivas RG. (2008) The rusts on Proteaceae, including Puccinia grevilleae sp. nov. from northern Australia. Australasian Plant Pathology 37:344–346.