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Shannon S. Nix                 

Mycologist/ Microbial Ecologist

Associate Professor


Ph.D., Ecology, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Dept. of Ecology, Evolution & Natural Resources (DEENR)

B.S., Environmental Forest Biology, State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY ESF)


(W) (814) 393-1905


Office:  263 STC


Professional Associations


        American Phytopathological Society

Ecological Society of America

Mycological Society of America

Pennsylvania Academy of Science   

Courses Taught

BIOL 105 Freshman Biology Seminar

BIOL 165 Principles of Biology I Lab

BIOL 166 Principles of Biology II Lab

BIOL 211 Environmental Biology

BIOL 306 General Botany 

BIOL 307 General Mycology 

BIOL 341 General Microbiology 

BIOL 440/540 Environmental Microbiology

BIOL 500 Graduate Seminar

BIOL 600 Special Problems in Biology

NSCI 150 Integrated Science

PH 410 Introduction to Scanning Electron Microscopy


Research Interests

My research interests lie in the unique and often neglected milieu of phylloplane (leaf surface) microbial ecology.  I am interested in understanding the roles that interspecific interactions, anthropogenic disturbances, and climate play in producing discernable patterns of species diversity and community composition in phylloplane fungal communities.  Testing existing theories in sessile, multi-species microbial communities allows me to assess and explore ecological theory in a manner that is often difficult or impossible to do with higher organisms.  Additional interests include investigating the resilience of phylloplane fungi to climate change and disturbance; determining whether changes in environmental parameters increase vulnerability of plants to disease due to alteration of the phylloplane mycoflora; and uncovering how phylloplane microbes alter their environment as a result of natural and anthropogenic pressures.


Recent Publications

Nix, SS, Burpee, LL and Buck, JW (2009) The response of 2 epiphytic yeast populations to disturbance caused by mechanical wounding or infection by Rhizoctonia solani on the phylloplane of tall fescue. Canadian Journal of Microbiology 55:1160-1165.

Nix, SS, Burpee, LL, Jackson, KL and Buck, JW (2008) Short-term temporal dynamics of yeast abundance on the tall fescue phylloplane.  Canadian Journal of Microbiology 54: 299-304

Nix-Stohr, S, Burpee, LL and Buck, JW (2008) The influence of exogenous nutrients on the abundance of yeasts on the phylloplane of turfgrass.  Microbial Ecology 55: 15-20.

Nix-Stohr, S, Moshe, R and Dighton, J (2008) Effects of propagule density and survival strategies on establishment and growth: further investigations in the phylloplane fungal model system. Microbial Ecology 55: 38-44.

Stohr, SN and Dighton, J (2004) Effects of species diversity on establishment and coexistence:  a phylloplane fungal community model system.  Microbial Ecology 48: 431-438.