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Dr. Kranthi Mandadi

Mandadi, Dr. Kranthi
Dr. Kranthi Mandadi
Assistant Professor
Undergraduate Education
B.S., A.N.G.R. Agricultural University, India, 2002
Graduate Education
Ph.D., Texas A&M University, 2010
M.S., Texas A&M University-Kingsville, 2005
B.S., A.N.G.R. Agricultural University, India, 2002

Research Emphasis

Plant Stress Biology and Biotechnology

World-wide, pathogens, insects and abiotic stresses cause major losses to agricultural production and productivity. Our lab employs integrated approaches for basic and translational studies of crop stress responses in model and crops. We are using the latest genomics, genetics, and bioinformatics tools to study plant stress responses to diverse plant biotic and abiotic stress conditions, as well as enhance their stress tolerance using biotechnology and breeding tools.

Current Projects

Fastidious plant diseases of vegetables and fruits


Fastidious (unculturable) plant pathogens are devastating to several food and commodity crops. For instance, citrus greening or Huanglongbing disease, caused by a fastidious bacterium, Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus, is inflicting approximately $3 billion in annual losses. Similarly, potato zebra chip disease, caused by Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum, causes annual crop losses of US $25 million in Texas alone. We are utilizing the latest genomic, genetic and biotechnology tools to discover and utilize novel disease resistance genes to confer tolerance to the devastating pathogens. Furthermore, to overcome the challenges in studying fastidious pathogens, we are developing new technologies and bioassays that enable culturing and propagation of these pathogens. These tools are being used to conduct high throughput screening of antimicrobial genes and therapeutics.


Bioenergy grass diseases and crop improvement


Diseases and abiotic stresses of grasses result in annual yield losses of US $300 million or more. However, very little is known about the gene regulatory networks that function in grass defenses, particularly related to grass viral diseases. To enable fundamental studies of cereal and bioenergy grass defense pathways, we are pursuing genetic and genomic studies using model grasses, Brachypodium distachyon (a C3 grass) and Setaria viridis (a C4 grass). The research findings are further translated to agronomic grasses such as sugarcane and energycane using biotechnology and breeding tools.

Selected Publications

Pant, S.R., Irigoyen, S, Doust, A.N., Scholthof, K-B.G. and Mandadi, K.K. (2016). Setaria: A food crop and translational research model for C4 grasses. Front. Plant Sci. 7, 1885

Mandadi, K.K., Pyle, J.D., and Scholthof, K-B.G. (2015) Characterization of SCL33 splicing patterns during diverse virus infections in Brachypodium distachyonPlant Signaling and Behavior 10:8, e1042641

Mandadi, K.K. and Scholthof, K-B.G. (2015) Genome-wide analysis of alternative splicing landscapes modulated during plant-virus interactions in Brachypodium distachyon. Plant Cell 27, 71-85. COVER FEATURE/LARGE SCALE BIOLOGY

Mandadi K.K., Pyle, J.D., and Scholthof, K-B.G. (2014) Comparative analysis of antiviral responses in Brachypodium distachyon and Setaria viridis reveal conserved and unique outcomes among C3 and C4 plant defenses. Mol. Plant Microbe Interact. 27, 1277-1290.

Mandadi, K.K., and Scholthof, K-B.G. (2013) Plant immune responses against viruses: How does a virus cause disease? Plant Cell 25, 1489–1505

Góngora-Castillo, E., Childs, K.L., Fedewa, G., Hamilton, J.P., Liscombe, D.K., Magallanes, M., Mandadi, K., Nims, N.E., Runguphan, W., Vaillancourt, B., Varbanova, M., DellaPenna, D., McKnight, T., O’Connor, S., and Buell, C.R. (2012). Development of transcriptomic resources for interrogating the biosynthesis of monoterpene indole alkaloids in medicinal plant species. PLoS ONE 7(12): e52506

Mandadi, K.K., and Scholthof, K.-B.G. (2012). Characterization of a viral synergism in the monocot Brachypodium reveals distinctly altered host molecular processes associated with disease. Plant Physiol. 1601432-1452.

Mandadi, K.K., Misra, A., Ren, S., and McKnight, T.D. (2009) BT2 mediates multiple responses to nutrients, stresses and hormones in Arabidopsis thaliana. Plant Physiol. 150, 1930-1939.

Ren, S., Mandadi, K.K., Boedeker, A.L., Rathore, K.S., and McKnight, T.D. (2007) Regulation of telomerase in Arabidopsis by BT2, an apparent target of the TELOMERASE ACTIVATOR1. Plant Cell 19, 23-31.