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Jon Magnuson is a biochemist with more than 20 years of research experience studying enzymes and metabolic pathways in bacteria and fungi. Dr. Magnuson is currently part of a team utilizing filamentous fungi in the development of processes for converting renewable biomass to fuels, chemicals and enzymes. This research involves the discovery and manipulation of genes encoding the enzymes of biosynthetic pathways or the regulation of those pathways. Complementary to this work is his major interest in fungal genomics. He is involved in the annotation and analysis of many fungal genomes with particular focus on the enzymes involved in the breakdown of plant biomass into sugars. Another area of his research is developing tools to assess and understand the diversity of fungi and other eukaryotic microbes found in different natural environments. This research has culminated in the development of a microarray based on a highly variable region of the ribosomal RNA gene, which is useful for the study of the diverse fungi, diatoms and green algae found in soils, sediments and natural biofilms.