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Ping He

He, Ping
Ping He
Presidential Impact Fellow and Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics
Borlaug/Room 179
Undergraduate Education
B.S. China Agricultural University (1993)
Graduate Education
M.S. Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (1998)
Ph.D. Kansas State University (2003)
Postdoc. Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School (2003-2008)
Joined Texas A&M in 2009
NSF CAREER Award 2013

Signal Transduction in Plant Innate Immunity

Plants and animals, under constant attack by microbes, have evolved sophisticated immune systems to defend against infections. In turn, successful pathogens have developed elegant virulence strategies to suppress host immunity. Long-standing association between hosts and microbes has resulted in both acquiring specific adaptations which maximize their own survival and productivity.

Our laboratory is interested in elucidating novel plant immune signaling pathways as well as studying the myriad actions of pathogen virulence factors that intercept host immune responses. In order to provide a complete view of host-microbe interactions, we are using cellular, functional genomic, genetic, biochemical and bioinformatic approaches. In addition, plant immunity is inextricably linked with plant development and environmental stresses. We are also interested in understanding the signaling crosstalk that orchestrates plant responses to different extrinsic and intrinsic signals. Ultimately, knowledge gained from studying model plants, such as Arabidopsis, will be applied to improve crop plants for resistance against different biotic and abiotic stresses.

Recent Publications

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  1. Ma, X, Claus, LAN, Leslie, ME, Tao, K, Wu, Z, Liu, J et al.. Ligand-induced monoubiquitination of BIK1 regulates plant immunity. Nature. 2020;581 (7807):199-203.
    doi: 10.1038/s41586-020-2210-3. PubMed PMID:32404997. PubMed Central PMC7233372.

  2. Yang, Y, Liu, J, Yin, C, de Souza Vespoli, L, Ge, D, Huang, Y et al.. RNA Interference-Based Screen Reveals Concerted Functions of MEKK2 and CRCK3 in Plant Cell Death Regulation. Plant Physiol. 2020;183 (1):331-344.
    doi: 10.1104/pp.19.01555. PubMed PMID:32165446. PubMed Central PMC7210613.

  3. Kattge, J, Bönisch, G, Díaz, S, Lavorel, S, Prentice, IC, Leadley, P et al.. TRY plant trait database - enhanced coverage and open access. Glob Chang Biol. 2020;26 (1):119-188.
    doi: 10.1111/gcb.14904. PubMed PMID:31891233. .

  4. Yu, X, Xu, G, Li, B, de Souza Vespoli, L, Liu, H, Moeder, W et al.. The Receptor Kinases BAK1/SERK4 Regulate Ca2+ Channel-Mediated Cellular Homeostasis for Cell Death Containment. Curr. Biol. 2019;29 (22):3778-3790.e8.
    doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2019.09.018. PubMed PMID:31679931. PubMed Central PMC6953177.

  5. Li, B, Ferreira, MA, Huang, M, Camargos, LF, Yu, X, Teixeira, RM et al.. The receptor-like kinase NIK1 targets FLS2/BAK1 immune complex and inversely modulates antiviral and antibacterial immunity. Nat Commun. 2019;10 (1):4996.
    doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-12847-6. PubMed PMID:31676803. PubMed Central PMC6825196.

  6. Yu, X, Li, B, Jang, GJ, Jiang, S, Jiang, D, Jang, JC et al.. Orchestration of Processing Body Dynamics and mRNA Decay in Arabidopsis Immunity. Cell Rep. 2019;28 (8):2194-2205.e6.
    doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2019.07.054. PubMed PMID:31433992. PubMed Central PMC6716526.

  7. Hou, S, Yin, C, He, P. Cleave and Unleash: Metacaspases Prepare Peps for Work. Trends Plant Sci. 2019;24 (9):787-790.
    doi: 10.1016/j.tplants.2019.06.010. PubMed PMID:31272898. PubMed Central PMC7232966.

  8. Cox, KL Jr, Babilonia, K, Wheeler, T, He, P, Shan, L. Return of old foes - recurrence of bacterial blight and Fusarium wilt of cotton. Curr. Opin. Plant Biol. 2019;50 :95-103.
    doi: 10.1016/j.pbi.2019.03.012. PubMed PMID:31075542. .

  9. Liu, Z, Jian, Y, Chen, Y, Kistler, HC, He, P, Ma, Z et al.. A phosphorylated transcription factor regulates sterol biosynthesis in Fusarium graminearum. Nat Commun. 2019;10 (1):1228.
    doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-09145-6. PubMed PMID:30874562. PubMed Central PMC6420630.

  10. Zhou, J, Wang, P, Claus, LAN, Savatin, DV, Xu, G, Wu, S et al.. Proteolytic Processing of SERK3/BAK1 Regulates Plant Immunity, Development, and Cell Death. Plant Physiol. 2019;180 (1):543-558.
    doi: 10.1104/pp.18.01503. PubMed PMID:30782965. PubMed Central PMC6501102.

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