Plant Pathology Graduate Program

Patricia Manosalva


Patricia Manosalva
Office: 951-827-3773
Fax: 951-827-4294
3485 Boyce Hall
Office Hours: , not specified - not specified
Email: patricia.manosalva@ucr.edu

Patricia Manosalva

Assistant Professor & Director of the Avocado Rootstock Breeding Program- Plant Pathologist, Molecular Biologist and Biochemist 

Ph.D.   2006    Plant Pathology
M.S.    2001    Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
B.S.     1997    Biology



Biography & Research Interests

The primary research goal of my laboratory is to elucidate the molecular and genetic basis of plant immunity against oomycete pathogens with an emphasis on Phytophthora cinnamomi (Pc) in model plants (Arabidopsis) and avocado. The identification of candidate genes associated with resistance against this oomycete pathogen will be a key aspect for the generation of molecular markers for Marker Assisted Selection (MAS) to develop new resistantavocado rootstocks varieties.One of the main goals of my multidisciplinary research program is to apply and incorporate the basic knowledge and information we gain from basic research in my lab into the UCR Avocado Rootstock Breeding program. The UCR avocado breeding program aims to develop a set of genomic tool for avocado breeding worldwide.

Research in my laboratory is focused on: 

Understanding how the CRT1/MORC1 gene family, a GHKL ATPase, modulates plant immunity against Phytophthora infestans in plants. We found that this gene family functions in multiple layers of plant immunity in Arabidopsis, barley, and Solanaceous crops. We will use molecular, genetics, and genomics (RNAseq, miRNAs) approaches to understand how this gene family regulates plant immunity to this oomycete pathogen

Elucidating the molecular and genetic basis of plant immunity against Phytophthora cinnamomi (Pc), the causal agent of Phytophthora root rot, the most destructive disease of avocado worldwide. We study plant-Pc. interactions in model plants (Arabidopsis) and crops (Avocado) using molecular, genetic, and genomic approaches including transcriptome analysis. 

Identifying and characterizing proteins from P. cinnamomi that are critical for pathogen fitness and virulence. In addition, we want to understand the molecular basis of the broad host specialization of Pc using comparative genomics.

Recently, a new introduction of potentially more aggressive Pc isolates has been found in Southern CA avocado growing areas. We are currently working on the phenotypic and molecular characterization of these Pc isolates. 



 2017 - Regents Faculty Fellowship- UCR Academic Senate  



  1. Kuhn, D., Groh, A., Rahaman, J., Freeman, B., Arpaia, M.L., Van den Berg, N., Abeysekara, N., Manosalva, P., and Chambers, A. 2019. Estimation of genetic diversity and relatedness in avocado germplasm collections using 384 SNP markers and a simplified visual analysis method. Tree Genetics & Genomes (submitted). 
  2. Belisle R., Hao W., McKee B., Arpaia M., Manosalva P*., and Adaskaveg J*. 2019. New Oomycota fungicides with activity against Phytophthora cinnamomiand their potential use for managing avocado root rot in California. Plant Diseasehttps://doi.org/10.1094/PDIS-09-18-1698-RE
  3. Andrew P. Schoenherr, Jackson N., Patricia Manosalva, and S. Karen Gomez. 2019. Mycorrhiza-induced resistance in potato involves priming of defense responses against cabbage looper (Noctuidae: Lepidoptera). Environmental Entomology.doi: 10.1093/ee/nvy195.
  4.  David Kuhn*,  Donald Livingstone*, Jennifer Richards*, Patricia Manosalva*, Noelani Van den Berg*, and Alan Chambers*. 2019. Application of genomic tools to avocado (Persea americana) breeding: SNP discovery for genotyping and germplasm characterization. Scientia Horticulturae Vol.246, pp:1-11doi.org/10.1016/j.scienta.2018.10.011
  5. Belise, R., McKee B., Hao W., Crowley M., Arpaia M., Miles T., Adaskaveg J., and Manosalva P*. 2019. Phenotypic characterization of genetically distinct Phytophthora cinnamomi isolates from avocado. Phytopathology Vol. 109(3):384-394. doi: 10.1094/PHYTO-09-17-0326-R.
  6. Murli Manohar, Dekai Wang, Patricia M. Manosalva, Hyong Woo Choi, Erich Kombrink, and Daniel F. Klessig. 2017. Members of the abscisic acid co-receptor PP2C protein family mediate salicylic-acid abscisic acid crosstalk. Plant Direct (accepted) bioRxiv. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/123059.
  7. Manohar M, Choi HW, Manosalva PM, Austin C, Peters J, Klessig D. Plant and human MORC proteins have DNA modifying activities similar to type II topoisomerases, but require additional factor(s) for full activity. Mol Plant Microbe Interact. 2017. 30(2):87-100. doi: 10.1094/MPMI-10-16-0208-R.

  8. Hyong Woo Choi, Murli Manohar, Patricia Manosalva, Miaoying Tian, Magali Moreau, and Daniel F. Klessig. 2016. Activation of plant innate immunity by extracellular HMGB3 and its inhibition by salicylic acid. PLOSPathogens .23(3):e1005518. DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1005518

  9. Manosalva P.*, Manohar M.* et al. 2015. Conserved nematode signaling molecules elicit plant defenses and pathogen resistance. Nature Communications. 6:7705 (DOI: 10.1038/ncomms8795).
  10. Manosalva P., et al. 2015. The GHKL ATPase MORC1 modulates species-specific plant immunity in Solanaceae. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions. Vol.28, No. 8, pp:927-942.
  11. Tonnessen BW*, Manosalva P*, et al. 2015. Rice phenylalanine ammonia-lyase gene OsPAL4 is associated with broad-spectrum disease resistance. Plant Mol Biol. 2015 Feb 87(3):273-86.
  12. Manohar M, Tian M, Moreau M, Park SW, Choi HW, Fei Z, Friso G, Asif M, Manosalva P, von Dahl CC, Shi K, Ma S, Dinesh-Kumar SP, O'Doherty I, Schroeder FC, van Wijk KJ, Klessig DF. 2015. Identification of multiple salicylic acid-binding proteins using two high throughput screens. Front Plant Sci. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00777.
  13. Hong-Gu Kang, Hyong Woo Choi,* Sabrina von Einem,* Patricia Manosalva*, et al. 2012. CRT1 is a nuclear-translocated MORC endonuclease that participates in multiple levels of plant immunity. Nature Communications. 3: 1298, doi:10.1038/ncomms2315.
  14. Manosalva P., et al. 2011. Rice 14-3-3 Protein (GF14e) negatively affects cell death and disease resistance. 2011. Plant Journal 68 (5): 777- 787.
  15. Manosalva P., et al. 2010. Methyl esterase 1 (StMES1) is required for systemic acquired resistance in potato. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions 23 (9): 1151-1163.
  16. Davidson R. M., Manosalva P., et al. 2010. Rice germin-like proteins: allelic diversity and relationships to early stress responses. Rice 3:43-55.
  17. Davidson R. M., Reeves P. A., Manosalva P., and Leach J. E. 2009. Germins: a diverse protein family important for crop improvement. Plant Science 177:499-510.
  18. Manosalva P., et al. 2009. A germin-like protein gene family functions as a complex quantitative trait locus conferring broad-spectrum disease resistance in rice. Plant Physiology (Focus issue on the grasses) 149: 286-296.
  19. Leach J., Davidson R., Liu B., Manosalva P., et al. 2007. Understanding broad-spectrum durable resistance in rice. in Rice Genetics V, p.191-209, editors D. S. Brar, D. Mackill, and B. Hardy, World Scientific Publ. Co.
  20. Leach J. E., Liu B., Manosalva P., et al. 2004. Dissection of durable resistance in rice. Genomic and Genetic Analysis of Plant Parasitism and Defense p.164-173, editors Tsuyumu S., Leach J., Shiraishi T., Wolpert T. APS Press, Minneapolis, MN. 
  21. Trognitz F., Manosalva P., et al. 2002. Plant defense genes associated with quantitative resistance to potato late blight in Solanum phureja x dihaploid S. tuberosum hybrids. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions 15 (6):587-597.


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