Mailing Address:Plant Pathology and Microbiology
Genomics Building /1234C
University of California
Riverside, CA 92521
Phone: (951) 827-4349
Fax: (951) 827-4294
Degree(s):PhD 2003 University of Waterloo, Canada
College/Division Affiliation:College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences
Center/Inst Affiliation(s):Center for Plant Cell Biology
Areas Of Expertise:Bacteria-plant Interactions; Bacterial Pathogenesis; Type III Secretion System and Secreted Effectors
Many bacteria associate with eukaryotic hosts to acquire nutrients. My research program aims to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying plant - bacteria interactions with the emphasis on elucidating the functions and evolution of bacterial secreted proteins during infection.
The type III secretion system (T3SS) is a specialized bacterial protein delivery system that injects virulence proteins, the type III secreted effectors (T3SEs), into the host cytosol. Once inside, T3SEs directly target their eukaryotic substrates and facilitate infection by promoting bacteria growth and suppressing host surveillance system. Many bacterial pathogens depend on T3SS and the suite of T3SEs traversing it for pathogenesis. Some of these pathogens are responsible for the most devastating diseases on animals and plants. Despite the essential role of T3SS and T3SEs plays in pathogenesis, the majority of the T3SEs are uncharacterized and the molecular mechanisms by which individual T3SEs promote virulence are largely unknown. We use Pseudomonas syringae and Sinorhizobium fredii as model systems to study the functions of type III secreted effectors during interactions with their plant hosts. We have also recently started proteomic research on Spiroplasma citri, which is a mollicute causing citrus stubborn. A combination of comparative genomics, functional genomics, genetics and bioinformatic approaches is employed.
Our research will eventually lead to genetic manipulation of bacterial strains to control diseases and promote higher crop yields in agriculture, in a sustainable manner.
Lab Personnel: +
- Zhou, Huanbin
- Postgraduate Researcher — Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Plant-pathogen Interactions
- Morgan, Robyn
- Staff Research Associate — Bacterial Pathogenesis