Episode Summary

Fungi are some of the forgotten members of the microbiome, the microbes that live on the human body.  One reason is because the overwhelming bacterial members of the microbiome keep the fungi in check.

Mahmoud Ghannoum is a professor at Case Western University and the director of the Center for Medical Mycology, who studies fungal pathogens, such as Candida, Aspergillus, and Cryptococcus

Ghannoum talks about how changes in the bacterial microbiome cause the fungi to overgrow and cause disease, how bacteria and fungi can “play together” to cause problems, how diet, lifestyle, and probiotics can help keep the bad fungi from overgrowing, how scientific data is needed to analyze the effect of diet and probiotics on the microbiome, and how if he wasn’t a scientist, he’d like to be Anthony Bourdain.  

The microCase for listeners to solve is about Nirvana, a young yoga prodigy who gets a potentially fatal disease while trying out a difficult yoga pose.

Get the ASM 2019 Fungal Report, now available.


  • Karl Klose, Ph.D. (UTSA)
  • Mahmoud Ghannoum, Ph.D. (Case Western University)
  • Janakiram Seshu, Ph.D. (UTSA)
  • Mylea Echazarreta (UTSA)
  • Anish Saikumar (UTSA)
  • Richardo Sanchez (UTSA)

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