Jolanda van Munster


  • West Mains Road, Kings Buildings, Peter Wilson Building

    EH9 3JG Edinburgh

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

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Research activity per year

Personal profile

Research interests

I am a microbiologist with a passion for carbohydrates and their role in biology; I am particularly interested in finding out how microbes degrade complex carbohydrates. I became fascinated by carbohydrate active enzymes while pursuing my PhD in microbial physiology at the University of Groningen. There I combined biochemistry with fungal genetics to study how enzymes degraded complex sugars in fungal cell walls. As postdoctoral fellow at the University of Nottingham I investigated how fungi regulate their gene expression and produce enzymes to degrade complex carbohydrates in plant cell wall lignocellulose. Funded by a BBSRC Fellowship, I then moved to the University of Manchester where I investigating how fungi, via their enzymes, affect the properties of plant material. I applied surface analysis tools to characterise changes in insoluble lignocellulose and combined this with detailed characterisation of the responsible enzyme activities. This work aimed to understand of how the fungal enzymatic machinery deconstructs plant biomass, a prerequisite for improving exploitation in sustainable biotechnology. At SRUC I lead the glycomycology team, we focuss on elucidating plant biomass degradation by anaerobic fungi that are part of the ruminant microbiome. 

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, University of Groningen


Award Date: 22 Sept 2014

External positions

EUROFUNG think tank in fungal biotechnology

Mar 2023 → …

Microbiology Society

Feb 2022 → …

Manchester Institute of Biotechnology, University of Manchester

Aug 2020Aug 2022

Frontiers in fungal biology

Jun 2020 → …

Carbohydrate Research

Aug 2017 → …


  • Q Science (General)
  • microbiology
  • mycology
  • plant biomass degradation
  • QD Chemistry
  • carbohydrates
  • carbohydrate active enzymes
  • SF Animal culture
  • microbiome
  • rumen


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