Nicholas P. Money at the Harvard Science Center


Molds, Mushrooms, and Medicines:
Our Lifelong Relationship with Fungi

in conversation with DONALD H. PFISTER


March 19, 2024
6:00 PM ET


Harvard Science Center Hall A
1 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA


$0.00 (Free RSVP Required) $31.82 (book-included)

Harvard Book Store, the Harvard University Division of Science, and the Harvard Library welcome NICHOLAS P. MONEY—professor of biology at Miami University and author of The Rise of Yeast and Mushrooms: A Natural and Cultural History—for a discussion of his new book Molds, Mushrooms, and Medicines: Our Lifelong Relationship with Fungi. He will be joined in conversation by DONALD H. PFISTER—Asa Gray Research Professor and Curator at the Farlow Herbarium of Cryptogamic Botany.


There are two ticket options available for this event. Nicholas will sign copies of his book after the presentation.

Free General Admission Ticket: Includes admission for one.

Book-Included Ticket: Includes admission for one and one hardcover copy of Molds, Mushrooms, and Medicines.


About Molds, Mushrooms, and Medicines

From beneficial yeasts that aid digestion to toxic molds that cause disease, we are constantly navigating a world filled with fungi. Molds, Mushrooms, and Medicines explores the amazing ways fungi interact with our bodies, showing how our health and well-being depend on an immense ecosystem of yeasts and molds inside and all around us.

Nicholas Money takes readers on a guided tour of a marvelous unseen realm, describing how our immune systems are engaged in continuous conversation with the teeming mycobiome inside the body, and how we can fall prey to serious and even life-threatening infections when this peaceful coexistence is disturbed. He also sheds light on our complicated relationship with fungi outside the body, from wild mushrooms and cultivated molds that have been staples of the human diet for millennia to the controversial experimentation with magic mushrooms in the treatment of depression.

Drawing on the latest advances in mycology, Molds, Mushrooms, and Medicines reveals what scientists are learning about the importance of fungi to our lives, from their vital role in supporting the ecosystems on which we depend to their emerging uses in lifesaving medicine.

Praise for Molds, Mushrooms, and Medicines

“An amazing tour of the world of fungi—a realm that is more entwined with the lives of humans than we realize.” —Alanna Collen, author of 10% Human: How Your Body’s Microbes Hold the Key to Health and Happiness

“A scintillating account of our inseparable relationships with fungi, both within and outside the body. Money’s compelling blend of social history and the latest mycological research, told with his signature wry wit, will leave you both astonished and squirming.” —Alison Pouliot, author of Meetings with Remarkable Mushrooms: Forays with Fungi across Hemispheres

“With an encyclopedic knowledge, a contagious curiosity, and a great sense of humor, Nicholas Money has written another wonderful guide to the fantastic world of fungi. Yet this time, we look within and upon the human body to explore the teeming fungal diversity that shapes our daily existence in ways that remain powerful yet mysterious.” —Michael J. Hathaway, author of What a Mushroom Lives For

Masking Policy

Masks are encouraged but not required for this event.

Donald H. Pfister
Donald H. Pfister

Donald H. Pfister

Donald H. Pfister is the Asa Gray Research Professor and Curator at the Farlow Herbarium of Cryptogamic Botany. He taught various courses over his career including about fungi and tree and forests. His research is on fungal taxonomy and phylogeny. He has published on the history of mycology and the documentation of biological specimens. He completed his undergraduate degree at Miami University in Ohio* and Ph.D. at Cornell University. Fieldwork has taken him to the island of the Caribbean, South America, Iceland, Asia and various parts of North America.

He has been director of the Harvard University Herbaria, Faculty Dean at Kirkland House, Dean of the Summer School and Interim Dean of Harvard College. He is serving now as the Interim Curator of Harvard Ware Collection of Glass Plants.

Nicholas P. Money
Nicholas P. Money

Nicholas P. Money

Nicholas P. Money is professor of biology at Miami University in Ohio and the author of many books, including The Rise of Yeast: How the Sugar Fungus Shaped Civilization, Mushrooms: A Natural and Cultural History, and Microbiology: A Very Short Introduction.


There is NO PARKING at the Science Center. For those traveling to the Science Center by car, there is paid public parking in Harvard Square. More info here.

Harvard Science Center Hall A
1 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA

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