Yan Wang

Assistant Professor



CSB Appointment


Research Areas

Bioinformatics / Computational Biology, Cell Biology, Evolutionary Biology, Genetics / Genomics, Microbiology


Ph.D. University of Toronto 2016

Primary Undergraduate Department

Graduate Programs

Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, Environmental Sciences, Cell & Systems Biology, Genome Biology & Bioinformatics

Research Description

Our research group specializes in fungal biology and evolutionary genomics of microbial fungi. Our long term research goal is to decode the genetic makeup of fungal symbionts and investigate their adaptive strategies in response to host environments over extended evolutionary periods. In our laboratory, we employ insects and microbial fungi as model organisms to study host-microbe interactions and the mechanisms involved in the evolution of host specificity. Our research approach combines cutting-edge genomic methods, microscopy, and phylogenetics, providing a comprehensive perspective on fungus-related symbiotic relationships. I currently accept graduate students and postdoctoral fellows who share our passion for genomics and fungal biology. If you are interested in joining our team or collaborating with us, please don’t hesitate to contact me via email.

Contact Information

Office Phone: 416-208-2739
Office: SW542
Lab: SW553
Lab Phone: 416-287-7405

Mailing Address

Department of Biological Sciences
University of Toronto
1265 Military Trail
Scarborough, ON M1C 1A4

Visit lab’s website



Sequencing the Genomes of the First Terrestrial Fungal Lineages: What Have We Learned?

Gryganskyi AP, Golan J, Muszewska A, Idnurm A, Dolatabadi S, Mondo SJ, Kutovenko VB, Kutovenko VO, Gajdeczka MT, Anishchenko IM, Pawlowska J, Tran NV, Ebersberger I, Voigt K, Wang Y, Chang Y, Pawlowska TE, Heitman J, Vilgalys R, Bonito G, Benny GL, Smith ME, Reynolds N, James TY, Grigoriev IV, Spatafora JW, Stajich JE
2023, Microorganisms, 10.3390/microorganisms11071830

Divergent Evolution of Early Terrestrial Fungi Reveals the Evolution of Mucormycosis Pathogenicity Factors

Wang Y, Chang Y, Ortañez J, Peña JF, Carter-House D, Reynolds NK, Smith ME, Benny G, Mondo SJ, Salamov A, Lipzen A, Pangilinan J, Guo J, LaButti K, Andreopolous W, Tritt A, Keymanesh K, Yan M, Barry K, Grigoriev IV, Spatafora JW, Stajich JE, Ma L
2023, Genome Biology and Evolution, 10.1093/gbe/evad046

Phylogenomic analysis of the Neocallimastigomycota: proposal of Caecomycetaceae fam. nov., Piromycetaceae fam. nov., and emended description of the families Neocallimastigaceae and Anaeromycetaceae

Hanafy RA, Wang Y, Stajich JE, Pratt CJ, Youssef NH, Elshahed MS
2023, International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology, 10.1099/ijsem.0.005735

CIGAF—a database and interactive platform for insect-associated trichomycete fungi

Chaudhary S, Wu Y, Strongman D, Wang Y
2023, Database, 10.1093/database/baad038

Patterns and determinants of the global herbivorous mycobiome

Meili CH, Jones AL, Arreola AX, Habel J, Pratt CJ, Hanafy RA, Wang Y, Yassin AS, TagElDein MA, Moon CD, Janssen PH, Shrestha M, Rajbhandari P, Nagler M, Vinzelj JM, Podmirseg SM, Stajich JE, Goetsch AL, Hayes J, Young D, Fliegerova K, Grilli DJ, Vodička R, Moniello G, Mattiello S, Kashef MT, Nagy YI, Edwards JA, Dagar SS, Foote AP, Youssef NH, Elshahed MS
2023, Nature Communications, 10.1038/s41467-023-39508-z

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Early branching arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus Paraglomus occultum carries a small and repeat-poor genome compared to relatives in the Glomeromycotina

Malar C M, Wang Y, Stajich JE, Kokkoris V, Villeneuve-Laroche M, Yildirir G, Corradi N
2022, Microbial Genomics, 10.1099/mgen.0.000810

Evolution of zygomycete secretomes and the origins of terrestrial fungal ecologies

Chang Y, Wang Y, Mondo S, Ahrendt S, Andreopoulos W, Barry K, Beard J, Benny GL, Blankenship S, Bonito G, Cuomo C, Desiro A, Gervers KA, Hundley H, Kuo A, LaButti K, Lang BF, Lipzen A, O’Donnell K, Pangilinan J, Reynolds N, Sandor L, Smith ME, Tsang A, Grigoriev IV, Stajich JE, Spatafora JW
2022, iScience, 10.1016/j.isci.2022.104840

Trichomycetes from freshwater and salt marsh mosquito larvae with a new species in the monotypic genus Legerioides

Strongman D, Wang Y
2022, Botany, 10.1139/cjb-2022-0068

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Genome-scale phylogenetic analyses confirm Olpidium as the closest living zoosporic fungus to the non-flagellated, terrestrial fungi

Chang Y, Rochon D, Sekimoto S, Wang Y, Chovatia M, Sandor L, Salamov A, Grigoriev IV, Stajich JE, Spatafora JW
2021, Scientific Reports, 10.1038/s41598-021-82607-4

A genome-scale phylogeny of the kingdom Fungi

Li Y, Steenwyk JL, Chang Y, Wang Y, James TY, Stajich JE, Spatafora JW, Groenewald M, Dunn CW, Hittinger CT, Shen X, Rokas A
2021, Current Biology, 10.1016/j.cub.2021.01.074

Acarosporaceae of the Chihuahuan Desert: four Magnusson species saved from synonymy and a new yellow species

Knudsen K, Kocourková J, Hodková E, Malíček J, Wang Y
2021, The Bryologist, 10.1639/0007-2745-124.4.533

Ion channel profiling of the Lymnaea stagnalis ganglia via transcriptome analysis

Dong N, Bandura J, Zhang Z, Wang Y, Labadie K, Noel B, Davison A, Koene JM, Sun H, Coutellec M, Feng Z
2021, BMC Genomics, 10.1186/s12864-020-07287-2

The genome of Geosiphon pyriformis reveals ancestral traits linked to the emergence of the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis

Malar C M, Krüger M, Krüger C, Wang Y, Stajich JE, Keller J, Chen EC, Yildirir G, Villeneuve-Laroche M, Roux C, Delaux P, Corradi N
2021, Current Biology, 10.1016/j.cub.2021.01.058

Three species of Trimmatothelopsis (Acarosporaceae) from Europe and North America

Knudsen K, Kocourková J, Hodková E, Adams JN, Wang Y
2021, The Bryologist, 10.1639/0007-2745-124.2.271

Ecological Role of 6OH-BDE47: Is It a Chemical Offense Molecule Mediated by Enoyl-ACP Reductases?

Sun J, Barrett H, Hall DR, Kutarna S, Wu X, Wang Y, Peng H
2021, Environmental Science & Technology, 10.1021/acs.est.1c05718

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Phylogenomic Analyses of Non-Dikarya Fungi Supports Horizontal Gene Transfer Driving Diversification of Secondary Metabolism in the Amphibian Gastrointestinal Symbiont, Basidiobolus

Tabima JF, Trautman IA, Chang Y, Wang Y, Mondo S, Kuo A, Salamov A, Grigoriev IV, Stajich JE, Spatafora JW
2020, G3 Genes|Genomes|Genetics, 10.1534/g3.120.401516

The monophyletic Sarcogyne canadensis–wheeleri clade, a newly recognized group sister to the European Acarospora glaucocarpa group

Knudsen K, Adams JN, Kocourková J, Wang Y, Ortañez J, Stajich JE
2020, The Bryologist, 10.1639/0007-2745-123.1.011

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Advances and Applications in the Quest for Orthologs

Glover N, Dessimoz C, Ebersberger I, Forslund SK, Gabaldón T, Huerta-Cepas J, Martin M, Muffato M, Patricio M, Pereira C, da Silva AS, Wang Y, Sonnhammer E, Thomas PD, Rogers R
2019, Molecular Biology and Evolution, 10.1093/molbev/msz150

Diversification of the gut fungi Smittium and allies (Harpellales) co-occurred with the origin of complete metamorphosis of their symbiotic insect hosts (lower Diptera)

Wang Y, White MM, Moncalvo J
2019, Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 10.1016/j.ympev.2019.106550

Horizontal Gene Transfer as an Indispensable Driver for Evolution of Neocallimastigomycota into a Distinct Gut-Dwelling Fungal Lineage

Murphy CL, Youssef NH, Hanafy RA, Couger MB, Stajich JE, Wang Y, Baker K, Dagar SS, Griffith GW, Farag IF, Callaghan TM, Elshahed MS, Druzhinina IS
2019, Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 10.1128/AEM.00988-19

Molecular Dating of the Emergence of Anaerobic Rumen Fungi and the Impact of Laterally Acquired Genes

Wang Y, Youssef NH, Couger MB, Hanafy RA, Elshahed MS, Stajich JE, Zhaxybayeva O
2019, mSystems, 10.1128/mSystems.00247-19

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Comparative Genomics Reveals the Core Gene Toolbox for the Fungus-Insect Symbiosis

Wang Y, Stata M, Wang W, Stajich JE, White MM, Moncalvo J, Taylor JW
2018, mBio, 10.1128/mBio.00636-18

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An eight-gene molecular phylogeny of the Kickxellomycotina, including the first phylogenetic placement of Asellariales

Tretter ED, Johnson EM, Benny GL, Lichtwardt RW, Wang Y, Kandel P, Novak SJ, Smith JF, White MM
2017, Mycologia, 10.3852/13-253

Overview of 75 years ofSmittiumresearch, establishing a new genus forSmittium culisetae, and prospects for future revisions of the ‘Smittium’ clade

Wang Y, Tretter ED, Lichtwardt RW, White MM
2017, Mycologia, 10.3852/11-311

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Draft Genome Sequence of Capniomyces stellatus , the Obligate Gut Fungal Symbiont of Stonefly

Wang Y, White MM, Moncalvo J
2016, Genome Announcements, 10.1128/genomea.00761-16

Genome-Wide Survey of Gut Fungi (Harpellales) Reveals the First Horizontally Transferred Ubiquitin Gene from a Mosquito Host

Wang Y, White MM, Kvist S, Moncalvo J
2016, Molecular Biology and Evolution, 10.1093/molbev/msw126

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Using a five-gene phylogeny to test morphology-based hypotheses of Smittium and allies, endosymbiotic gut fungi (Harpellales) associated with arthropods

Wang Y, Tretter ED, Johnson EM, Kandel P, Lichtwardt RW, Novak SJ, Smith JF, White MM
2014, Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 10.1016/j.ympev.2014.05.008

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Examining new phylogenetic markers to uncover the evolutionary history of early-diverging fungi: comparing MCM7, TSR1 and rRNA genes for single- and multi-gene analyses of the Kickxellomycotina

Tretter E, Johnson E, Wang Y, Kandel P, White M
2013, Persoonia - Molecular Phylogeny and Evolution of Fungi, 10.3767/003158513X666394

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Nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region as a universal DNA barcode marker for Fungi

Schoch CL, Seifert KA, Huhndorf S, Robert V, Spouge JL, Levesque CA, Chen W, Bolchacova E, Voigt K, Crous PW, Miller AN, Wingfield MJ, Aime MC, An K, Bai F, Barreto RW, Begerow D, Bergeron M, Blackwell M, Boekhout T, Bogale M, Boonyuen N, Burgaz AR, Buyck B, Cai L, Cai Q, Cardinali G, Chaverri P, Coppins BJ, Crespo A, Cubas P, Cummings C, Damm U, de Beer ZW, de Hoog GS, Del-Prado R, Dentinger B, Diéguez-Uribeondo J, Divakar PK, Douglas B, Dueñas M, Duong TA, Eberhardt U, Edwards JE, Elshahed MS, Fliegerova K, Furtado M, García MA, Ge Z, Griffith GW, Griffiths K, Groenewald JZ, Groenewald M, Grube M, Gryzenhout M, Guo L, Hagen F, Hambleton S, Hamelin RC, Hansen K, Harrold P, Heller G, Herrera C, Hirayama K, Hirooka Y, Ho H, Hoffmann K, Hofstetter V, Högnabba F, Hollingsworth PM, Hong S, Hosaka K, Houbraken J, Hughes K, Huhtinen S, Hyde KD, James T, Johnson EM, Johnson JE, Johnston PR, Jones EG, Kelly LJ, Kirk PM, Knapp DG, Kõljalg U, Kovács GM, Kurtzman CP, Landvik S, Leavitt SD, Liggenstoffer AS, Liimatainen K, Lombard L, Luangsa-ard JJ, Lumbsch HT, Maganti H, Maharachchikumbura SSN, Martin MP, May TW, McTaggart AR, Methven AS, Meyer W, Moncalvo J, Mongkolsamrit S, Nagy LG, Nilsson RH, Niskanen T, Nyilasi I, Okada G, Okane I, Olariaga I, Otte J, Papp T, Park D, Petkovits T, Pino-Bodas R, Quaedvlieg W, Raja HA, Redecker D, Rintoul TL, Ruibal C, Sarmiento-Ramírez JM, Schmitt I, Schüßler A, Shearer C, Sotome K, Stefani FO, Stenroos S, Stielow B, Stockinger H, Suetrong S, Suh S, Sung G, Suzuki M, Tanaka K, Tedersoo L, Telleria MT, Tretter E, Untereiner WA, Urbina H, Vágvölgyi C, Vialle A, Vu TD, Walther G, Wang Q, Wang Y, Weir BS, Weiß M, White MM, Xu J, Yahr R, Yang ZL, Yurkov A, Zamora J, Zhang N, Zhuang W, Schindel D
2012, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 10.1073/pnas.1117018109

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