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Anjali S Iyer-Pascuzzi

Botany and Plant Pathology 

  • Assistant Professor
Lilly Hall Room 1-347

Dr. Iyer-Pascuzzi’s research investigates the mechanisms that plant roots use to perceive and respond to the environment. There are two primary areas of research in the lab. The first is focused on understanding the molecular basis of plant resistance to bacterial wilt, caused by Ralstonia solanacearum. Ralstonia is a devastating soil-borne pathogen that first infects root systems. Despite the devastation it causes, little is known regarding the networks that underlie resistance or susceptibility, and root responses to R. solanacearum are unclear. Using both tomato and Arabidopsis, we focus on understanding resistance responses at three levels of root development: root cell types, root developmental stages, and root architecture. Current questions include, what are the spatio-temporal dynamics of pathogen invasion in resistant and susceptible genotypes? How are different root cell types and developmental stages affected by bacterial wilt? What are the gene regulatory networks involved in the response to bacterial wilt within each cell type? We use a combination of cell biology, genetics, and genomics approaches to address these questions. The major goal of this research is to identify novel forms of resistance to bacterial wilt. Our second area of research is centered around the role of Nodule Inception-Like Proteins (NLPs) in root development. NLP proteins are a unique family of transcription factors found in a wide diversity of plant species. We are studying the molecular mechanisms through which these proteins mediate root development and stress responses in Arabidopsis.  

Selected Publications

Topp, C. N., Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., Anderson, J. T., Lee, C. R., Zurek, P. R., Symonova, O., & Et al (2013). 3D Phenotyping and quantitative trait locus mapping identify core regions of the rice genome controlling root architecture. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, USA, 110(18), E1695-704.

Fang, S., Clark, R. T., Zheng, Y., Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., Weitz, J. S., Kochian, L. V., . . . Benfey, P. N. (2013). Genotypic recognition and spatial responses by rice roots. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, USA, 110(7), 2670-5.

Galkovskyi, T., Mileyko, Y., Bucksh, A., Moore, B., Symonova, O., Price, C. A., . . . Weitz, J. S. (2012). GiA Roots: Software for the High Throughput Analysis of Plant Root System Architecture. BMC Plant Biology, 12, 112.

Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., Zurek, P., & Benfey, P. N. (in press). High-throughput, non-invasive imaging of root systems. Methods in Molecular Biology.

Fang, S., Clark, R. T., Zheng, Y., Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., Weitz, J. S., Kochian, L. V., & Edelsbrunner, H. (in press). Genotypic recognition and spatial responses by rice roots. Proc Natl Acad Sci.

Cederholm, H. M., Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., & Benfey, P. N. (2012). Patterning the primary root in Arabidopsis. Wires Developmental Biology, 1, 675-691.

Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., Jackson, T. J., Cui, H., Petricka, J., Busch, W., Tsukagoshi, H., & Benfey, P. N. (2011). Cell identity regulators link development and stress responses in the Arabidopsis root. Developmental Cell, 21, 770-782.

Pop, A., Huttenhower, C., Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., Benfey, P. N., & Troyanskaya, O. (2010). Integrated functional networks of process, tissue, and developmental stage specific interactions in Arabidopsis thaliana. BMC Systems Biol, 4, 180.

Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., Simpson, J., Herrera-Estrella, L., & Benfey, P. N. (2010). Functional Genomics of root growth and development in Arabidopsis. Current Opinions in Plant Biology, 12, 165-171.

Iyer-Pascuzzi, A. S., & Benfey, P. N. (2010). Fluorescence-Activated Cell Sorting in Plant Developmental Biology. Methods Mol Biol, 655, 313-319.