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Microbial Bioinformatics, Evolution, and Phylogeny

Thanks for your interest in the Department of Plant Pathology at UF! We are one of the largest departments of plant pathology in the country with faculty at Gainesville and at nine Research and Education Centers around the state. We are known for our research on diseases of diverse crops including citrus, strawberries, blueberries, vegetables, ornamentals, turf, field crops, sugarcane, and tropical fruits. Our department, founded nearly 60 years ago, is part of the University of Florida, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS) and the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS).


  • Erica Goss - Population genetics, evolution and emergence of plant pathogens.
  • Jeffrey Jones - Molecular genetics and genomics of bacterial pathogens, particularly Xanthomonads. Biotechnology of disease resistance in tomato and pepper.
  • Rosemary Loria - Evolution of plant pathogenicity in the genus Streptomyces. Secondary metabolite production and biotechnology.
  • Samuel Martins - Etiology of bacterial diseases and assessment, manipulation, and extraction of bacteria from the phytobiome to manage plant disease, improve nutrient uptake and diminish the impact of abiotic stress.
  • David Norman - Molecular genetics and genomics of Ralstonia solanacearum. Disease management of ornamental crops.
  • Jeffrey Rollins - Molecular biology and genomics of fungal plant pathogens. Pathogenic mechanisms and multicellular developmental. Necrotrophic pathogens particularly Sclerotium rolfsii.
  • Matthew Smith - Fungal Evolution, Ecology and Systematics; special interests in ectomycorrhizal fungi, truffles, zygomycetes.
  • Gary Vallad - Etiology and management of bacterial and fungal vegetable diseases. Development and implementation of bio-based disease management strategies.
  • Frank White - Bacterial virulence effectors, genetics, genomics, and host interactions. Crops include rice, citrus, wheat, tomato, maize.