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Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions

Our research focuses on the genetics, genomics, and evolution of plant-microbe interactions, aiming at gaining a deeper level of understanding on the evolution of virulence and host-specificity in fungi and the molecular mechanisms of fungal pathogenesis on plants. Our vision is to understand microbial virulence and to translate this knowledge into effective intervention strategies for disease control. To achieve our goals we follow a systems biology based approach that integrates comparative and functional genomics, with molecular evolutionary analyses, and practical field work.  In our studies, we mainly focus on Dothideomycete fungi, as this is the largest class of Ascomycetes that includes noumerous notorious pathogens of major agronomic and biofuel crops. Thus, the socioeconomic benefit of understanding the nature of the diseases caused by these fungi is enormous. The lab has also expanded its research portfolio to address other critical issues in Molecular Plant Pathology, including the regulation and management of mycotoxin production by fungi, the monitoring of fungicide resistance in pathogens of agronomic importance for California, and the analysis of the co-evolutionary dynamics between biocontrol bacteria and targeted fungi.


Our Funding Sources


A post-doctoral position in the field of Fungal Genomics is currently available in our lab. For more information please click on the positions or contact the PI at

  Copyright © Ioannis Stergiopoulos. All rights reserved.

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