Principle Investigator

Sheng Yang He, Ph.D.

Sheng Yang He
University Distinguished Professor, HHMI/GBMF Investigator
    Hes@msu.edu


https://www.researchgate.net/researcher/39443755_Sheng_Yang_He

I am broadly interested in biological processes that mediate the molecular interplay between plants and microbes. In the past two decades, I led an interactive group of postdoctoral, graduate and undergraduate students who are interested in exploring novel phenomena in bacterial pathogenesis and disease susceptibility in plants. In addition, I teach graduate classes on plant and microbial biology and contribute to the large scientific community through serving on a variety of committees.

Lab Manager 

Gaëlle Cassin-Ross, Ph.D.

Gaelle Cassin-Ross
Lab Manager
    cassin@msu.edu



curriculum vitae

https://www.linkedin.com/pub/ga%C3%ABlle-cassin-ross/55/957/602

https://www.researchgate.net/researcher/2034572565_Gaelle_Cassin-Ross

Technicians

Caitlin Thireault, M.S.

Caitlin Thireault
Technician
    thireaul@msu.edu



curriculum vitae

https://www.linkedin.com/in/cthireault

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Caitlin_Thireault
Innate immune responses offer protection against a broad-range of microorganisms and potential pathogens. I am interested in dissecting innate immunity to identify novel contributing factors and refine our current understanding of plant-microbe interactions.

Postdoctoral Researchers

Kyaw (Joe) Aung, Ph.D.

Kyaw Aung
Postdoctoral Researcher
    aungkyaw@msu.edu



curriculum vitae


https://www.linkedin.com/pub/kyaw-aung/95/a3a/b2b

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Kyaw_Aung5
Although the Arabidopsis-Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato (Pst) DC3000 pathosystem has been extensively studied to elucidate basic principles underlying plant-pathogen interactions, little is known whether and how bacteria modulate adjoining non-infected plant cells for successful infection. My project aims at understanding how phytobacteria modulate host cell-to-cell communication to facilitate bacterial spread and multiplication in plants.

Alex Brutus, Ph.D.

Alex Brutus
Postdoctoral Researcher
    brutusal@msu.edu





https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Alexandre_Brutus

Danve Castroverde, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Researcher
    danve.online@gmail.com


Website

https://www.linkedin.com/pub/kyaw-aung/95/a3a/b2b

https://www.researchgate.net/researcher/39298453_Yu_Ti_Cheng
My primary research interest is molecular plant-pathogen interactions because of the remarkable interplay between two organisms and various factors. I joined the He Lab to examine and dissect how elevated temperature as an abiotic/environmental stress influences the plant defense signalling network.

YuTi Cheng, Ph.D.

YuTi Cheng
Postdoctoral Researcher
    yutic@msu.edu



curriculum vitae


https://www.researchgate.net/researcher/39298453_Yu_Ti_Cheng
Using a reverse genetics approach, I study the function of Arabidopsis genes whose expression are affected by the bacterial elicitor flg22, the bacterial toxin coronatine, and/or the salicylic acid analog BTH.

Bethany Huot, Ph.D.

Bethany Huot
Postdoctoral Researcher
    huotbeth@msu.edu



curriculum vitae


https://www.linkedin.com/pub/bethany-huot/22/5b1/a8b

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Bethany_Huot
I am currently working to identify the molecular mechanisms underlying temperature modulation of salicylic acid-mediated signaling and Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000 pathogenesis in Arabidopsis. As a result of my growing passion for teaching and mentoring students pursuing scientific careers, I started The Pub Club (www.thepubclubhub.org), one goal of which is to increase communication and collaboration among scientists at every stage.

Kinya Nomura, Ph.D.

Kinya Nomura Postdoctoral Researcher
    nomura@msu.edu



curriculum vitae


https://www.researchgate.net/researcher/39681317_Kinya_Nomura
I am working on Pseudomonas syringae Type-III effectors which suppress plant immunity during infection.

André Velásquez, Ph.D.

Andre Velasquez
Postdoctoral Researcher
    acvl@msu.edu



curriculum vitae


https://www.researchgate.net/researcher/39287588_Andre_C_Velasquez
My research is currently focused on understanding the mechanisms by which PAMP-triggered immunity is able to prevent pathogen establishment and growth. I am also investigating the variability of resistance to Pseudomonas syringae encountered in different natural accessions of Arabidopsis. Finally, a third project in which I am involved focuses into engineering new resistance pathways in plants.

Xiufang Xin, Ph.D.

Xiufang Xin
Postdoctoral Researcher
    xinxiufa@msu.edu



curriculum vitae

https://www.linkedin.com/pub/xiufang-xin/1a/751/974

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Xiu_Fang_Xin
I have been studying how a highly conserved Pseudomonas syringae effector, AvrE, modulates plant cellular processes to promote disease susceptibility. Recently, I initiated efforts to understand the molecular basis of the humidity requirement for Pseudomonas syringae infection in plants.

Li Zhang, M.S., Ph.D.

Li Zhang
Postdoctoral Researcher
    zhangl25@msu.edu



curriculum vitae

https://www.linkedin.com/pub/li-zhang/43/a17/995
The overall goal of my thesis research is to understand how the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae infects plants. The first project of my thesis research is aimed at engineering jasmonate receptor mutants that have reduced sensitivity to coronatine, but preserve responsiveness to endogenous jasmonate. The second project of my thesis is to clone Arabidopsis genes that, when mutated, restore the virulence of coronatine-deficient mutants of P. syringae bacteria.


Graduate Students

James Kremer
James Kremer
Ph.D. Student
    kremerj1@msu.edu



curriculum vitae




https://www.researchgate.net/profile/James_Kremer
I am researching the relationships between complex communities of microorganisms that colonize plants (the plant microbiome) and host innate immunity. I am also working on the experimental evolution of Pseudomonas syringae, comparative genomics of plant-associated bacteria, host/microbe transcriptomics, and gnotobiotic system development.

Matt Oney, M.S.

Matt Oney
Ph.D. Student
    oneymatt@gmail.com





https://www.linkedin.com/pub/matt-oney/47/a53/966

Brad Paasch

Brad Paasch
Ph.D. Student
    paaschbr@msu.edu



curriculum vitae

My research focuses on unraveling the molecular mechanisms in which a plant microbiome influences host processes. The role of a microbiome on plant development and innate immunity are of particular interest to my research.

Adam Seroka


Ph.D. Student
    serokaad@msu.edu




My research focuses on the interaction between Pseudomonas syringae  pv. tomato DC3000 and Arabidopsis thaliana and how local infection and  activation of defense systemically disrupts plant growth and movements. By studying the interconnected nature between plant 
pathogens, defense, and development, we can gain a broader insight  into the molecular mechanisms that regulate plant behavior.



Undergraduates


Franchesca Dion
- dionfran@msu.edu

Jordan Kopp
- koppjord@msu.edu

 
Jennifer Lee - leesari@msu.edu

Delaina May
- maydelai@msu.edu

Tanner Neher - ta.neher@gmail.com




Visiting Scholars


Dr. Yanjuan Jiang

jyj@xtbg.org.cn



Social events

Lab Lunch during ICAR in St. Louis (2017)

Celebrating Sheng Yang's HHMI renewal

As a tradition, the He lab takes an annual overnight retreat up north to the beautiful Au Sable River for boating, games, fishing, relaxation, and of course, riveting scientific discussions (2014)

Playing some music at Sheng Yang's house (2012)

Lab ski trip to Crystal Mountain (2013)

Another photo from the annual lab retreat (2014)