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Ph.D. Life sciences and Plant Pathology, University of Paris XI Orsay, France, 2008
M.S. Plant Protection and Environment, Agro-Paris-Tech, France, 2003
Dipl. Ing. agr. Agricultural Sciences and Plant Protection, National Institute of Agronomy Tunis, Tunisia, 2002
Research Interests and Current Efforts
My research program covers several aspects in plant pathology including epidemiology, pathogen population structure, pathogen adaptation to hosts and to climate change, and resistance gene identification in diverse plant-pathogen systems. I am particularly interested in understanding race dynamics and plant-pathogen interactions using genomics and transcriptomic approaches. Specific pathosystems include dollar spot on turfgrass, rust on switchgrass, rusts and septoria leaf blotch on wheat. Substantial efforts are directed towards developing disease-management strategies for main turfgrass and forages in Georgia. I work closely with several turfgrass and wheat breeders to develop disease resistant cultivars. My research interests also include deciphering the role of plant-associated microbes to develop novel approaches for disease management. The goal is to provide an ecological basis to improve the sustainability of turfgrass/forages cultivation systems by reducing reliance on chemical control and enhancing environmental and economical stewardship.