Nearly two years have passed since we have met the last time in Jena during the annual conference of the VAAM in 2016. We are very happy to welcome you back in Jena to join the biannual meeting of the VAAM special group on the “Biology and Biotechnology of Fungi”. The meeting will be the 12th event in this highly successful series and addresses all members of the special group as well as everybody who feels the vibrating excitement of fungal research. And Jena is at the heart of it. The current CRC/Transregio 124 “Pathogenic fungi and their human host: Networks of interaction – FungiNet” concentrates exclusively on human pathogenic fungi. The National Reference Center for Invasive Fungal Infections (NRZMyk) represents an expert point of contact on these “bad guys” and is hosted by the HKI. Filamentous fungi, and here also the ”good” ones, are some of the main players within the CRC 1127 “Chemical mediators in complex biosystems“ and the DFG funded excellence graduate school “Jena School of Microbial Communication” (JSMC). Although topics from such areas may receive special attention when coming to Jena, we cordially invite submissions from all fields of fungal research and encourage especially young scientists such as junior group-leaders, post-docs and doctoral researchers to register and apply for a talk.

Highlighting the international reputation of this series, we are especially proud to announce that Hailing Jin (UC Riverside), Michael Freitag (Oregon State University) and Joe Heitman (Duke University) will join our meeting and give plenary lectures. We are looking forward to meeting you in Jena!

The organizers
Axel Brakhage, Falk Hillmann, Vito Valiante