Biology: Dr. Morris
Dr. Paul F. Morris


Dr. Paul F. Morris
Ph. D., Queen's University, Canada
Office:     532A Life Sciences Building
Phone:   1-419-372-0481

Morris Lab Page 

Molecular plant-microbe interactions

Research Interests:

Oomycete genomics. The oomycetes which include the Phytophthora species are amongst the most destructive and economically important plant pathogens around the world. Molecular research on these novel eukaryotic pathogens is now progressing rapidly because genomic sequencing of several species have now been completed. We are particularly interested in the functional analysis of novel metabolic proteins and ABC type transporters.

Polyamine transport. In plants changes in cellular levels of polyamines are strongly correlated with the plant response to stresses such as drought, salinity, temperature fluctuations, and developmental processes such as root growth, and floral initiation. We hypothesize that polyamine transport within and between cells and tissues, is an essential component of the plant response to these environmental cues. Using a comparative genomics approach, we have identified a clade of polyamine specific transporters. We believe that regulation of the expression of these proteins will generate new insights in the role of polyamine in the plant adaptation to environmental signals.

Environmental Metagenomics. We have used 454 sequencing to study the transcriptome of the winter algal bloom that occurs annually under the ice of Lake Erie. Together with colleagues Bullerjahn and McKay, we will use the sequencing resources of a DOE-JGI community sequencing grant to study the microbial populations that drive oxygen depletion events in the central basin of Lake Erie during the summer months.

Selected Publications:

Mulangi, V., Phuntumart, V., Aouida, M., Ramotar, D., Morris P. 2012 Functional analysis of OsPUT1 a rice polyamine uptake transporter Planta 235:1-11.

Baxter L, Tripathy S, Ishaque N, Boot N, Cabral, A, Kemen, E, Thines M, Ah-Fong A, et al. 2010 Signatures of adaptation to obligate biotrophy in the Hyaloperonospora arabidopsidis genome. Science 330:1543-1546.

Lévesque CA, Brouwer H, Cano L, Hamilton JP, Holt C, Huitema E, Raffaele S, Robideau GP, et al. 2010 Genome sequence of the necrotrophic plant pathogen Pythium ultimum reveals original pathogenicity mechanisms and effector repertoire. Genome Biol. 11: R73.

Haas BJ, Kamoun S, Zody MC, Jiang RH, Handsaker RE, Cano LM, Grabherr M, et al. 2009 Genome sequence and analysis of the Irish Potato famine pathogen Phytophthora infestans. Nature 461:393-398.

Morris, PF, Schlosser, LR Onasch, KD, Wittenschlaeger, T, Austin R, Provart, N 2009 Multiple horizontal gene transfer events and domain fusions have created novel regulatory and metabolic networks in the oomycete genome. PLoS ONE 4(7): e6133.

Tyler, B. M., Tripathy, S., Zhang, X., Dehal, P., Jiang, R. H. Y., Aerts, A., Arredondo, F. D., et al. 2006 Phytophthora Genome Sequences Uncover Evolutionary Origins and Mechanisms of Pathogenesis. Science 313: 1261-1266.