Scientist Profile

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Casiana Vera-Cruz

Plant Pathologist, Outstanding Plant Pathologist (2002)

Expertise: Plant Pathology, Microbiology, Plant Breeding, Genetics and Biotechnology

Dr. Casiana Vera- Cruz or "Nollie" is recognized of her important contributions in the field of a plant pathologist (Senior Scientist II) at Plant Breeding, Genetics and Biotechnology (PBGB) Division. With expertise on plant pathology, she is responsible for researches on host plant resistance to diseases, and performs services for bacterial and fungal disease screening in breeding programs of different rice ecosystems. She also leads the IRRI-DA Heirloom Rice Project which aims to raise productivity and enrich the legacy of traditional rice through empowering communities in unfavorable rice-based ecosystem.

Affiliation

Senior Scientist, International Rice Research Institute, Laguna, Philippines

Association

    • Department of Plant Pathology, UPLB, Adjunct Associate Professor
    • Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas, Member, Supervisory Committee, Graduate Council
    • Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium, Member
    • PhD Evaluation Committee, The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, Copenhagen, Denmark, Member (External Examiner)
    • Joint Committee on Women & Cultural Diversity in Plant Pathology, American Phytopathological Society, Member
    • American Phytopathological Society, Member, Host Resistance Committee
    • International Foundation for Science, Reviewer
    • International Society for Plant Pathology Task Force on Global Food Security, Member
    • UNIDO, Project on Development of High Yielding Varieties of Abaca, Philippines, Consultant
    • Dept. of Plant Pathology, UPLB, Member, Academic Personnel Committee
    • Ad Hoc Committee on Interdisciplinary Program on Molecular, Member
    • Institute of Biological Sciences, UPLB, Affiliate Faculty
    • University of the Phiippines, Member,Graduate School Faculty
    • Dept of Plant Pathology, University of the Philippines Los Baños, Member, Instruction Committee
    • American Phytopathological Society, Member, Genetics Committee
    • Philippine Phytopathological Society, Board Member
    • Philippine Phytopathological Society, President
    • Philippine Phytopathological Society, Vice-President
    • Pest Management Council of the Philippines, Vice-President
    • Pest Control Council of the Philippines, Secretary
    • Pest Control Council of the Philippines, Board Member
    • Philippine Phytopathological Society, Treasurer

Employment

    • Plant Pathology, Plant Breeding, Genetics & Biotechnology Division (PBGB), IRRI, Philippines, Senior Scientist, 2006 June
    • Plant Pathology, Entomology & Plant Pathology Division, Senior Scientist, 2004 - 2006
    • IRRI, Philippines, Plant Pathologist, Entomology and Plant Pathology Division, 2000 - 2003
    • Asian Rice Biotechnology Network, Entomology and Plant, Consultant, 1998 - 2000
    • Department of Plant Pathology, UPLB, College, Laguna,, Associate Professor, 1997 - 2000
    • Plant Pathology Division, IRRI, Philippines, Assistant Scientist, 1991
    • Plant Pathology Division,International Rice Research Institute (Philippines)
       , Senior Research Assistant, 1985 - 1991
    • Department of Plant Pathology, IRRI, Philippines, Research Assistant, 1979 - 1984
    • Department of Plant Pathology, IRRI, Philippines, Research Aide, 1975 - 1978
    • Food Terminal, Inc Taguig, Metro Manila, Philippines, Researcher, 1974 - 1975
    • Department of Plant Pathology, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas, U.S.A, Graduate Research Assistant, 1991 - 1996
    • Entomology and Plant Pathology Division, International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Collaborative Research Fellow, 1993 - 1996
    • Plant Pathology Division, IRRI, Graduate Research Fellow, 1991-1992

Award

    • Best Paper Award on Bacterial blight resistance gene pyramids in maintainer lines of rice hybrids, PMCP Davao City, Philippines, 2002
    • Academic Faculty Affiliate, Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University, 2005
    • Reviewer of a research proposal, ERA-NET Plant Genomics on , ERA-PG Call Secretariat, The Hague, The Netherlands, 2006
    • Outstanding Plant Pathologist, Philippine Phytopathological Society (PPS), 2002
    • Balik-Scientist Award, Balik-Scientist Program of the Dept. of Science and Technology, Philippines, 1997 - 2000
    • Outstanding Research Award, Marker-Aided Pyramiding of Bacterial Blight ResistanceGenes in Maintainer Lines of Hybrid Rice, 2003
    • Best Poster Award on Development of Xa-gene pyramid rice lines with durable resistance, PMCP, Davao City, 2002
    • Performance Recognition Award, IRRI Recognition Day, IRRI, 1990 December 21
    • Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh, Bangladesh, Ph.D. Thesis Examiner, 2005 - 2006
    • Chair, Award's Committee, PPS-G.O. Ocfemia Award, , 2002-2003

Papers Presented

    • Improving resistance of hybrid rice parental lines to bacterial blight , Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Seminar Series, Hanoi Agricultural University, Vietnam
    • Strategies for disease management in the uplands, CURE 2006 Natural Resource Management Workshop, Dhaka, Bangladesh
    • Reaching the Breeders: Asian Rice Biotechnology Network and Low-cost marker technologies in major cereal crops: Development of low-cost gene-based trait assay technologies in cereals, SP3 Program, GCP Annual Research Meeting, Hilton Hotel, Rome, Italy
    • Development and characterization of blast resistance using differential varieties in rice, 4th International Rice Blast Conference, Vaya Hotel, Changsha, China
    • Impact of gene pyramids on Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae population structures? implications for deployment of Xa gene, International Conference Center, Jinling Research Institute, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China
    • High throughput, low-cost, gene-based trait assay technologies in cereals, Parallel Session, Generation Challenge Prpgram (GCP) Annual Research Meeting, Kopanong Hotel and Conference Center, Benoni, South Africa
    • SNP detection in marker- assisted selection: Dot-blot assay and Development of FRET (Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer)-based SNP assay for MAS and conducted hands-on training on dot-blot and FRET assays under the theme Low-cost gene-based technologies, VII MAS Training-cum-Workshop, Barwale Foundation, Hyderabad, India
    • Development of low-cost gene-based trait assay technologies in cereals, Plenary Session ? GCP Product, GCP Annual Research Meeting, Caesar Business Hotel, Sao Paulo, Brazil
    • Association of candidate defense genes with quantitative resistance to rice blast in doubled haploid and advanced backcross lines at the 3rd Workshop on Rice Blast entitled Plant-Microbe Interaction for Enhancing Resistance of Rice to Blast Disease, National Crop Experiment Station, Rural Development Administration, Suwon, Korea
    • Candidate resistance genes and its association with quantitative blast resistance in Vandana x Moroberekan advanced backcross population at the National Symposium on Upland Rice Production Systems, Association of Rice Research Workers at the Central Rainfed Upland Rice Research Station, Hazaribag 825 301, Jharkhand, India
    • Functional genomics approach to identification of broad-spectrum resistance genes against rice blast in Korean germplasm at NIAB, RDA, Suwon and Breeding for resistance to bacterial blight, HARI, Honam, Rural Development Administration, Suwon, Korea
    • Host plant resistance for managing bacterial blight: are major genes enough at the 1st International Conference on Bacterial Blight of Rice, Tsukuba International Congress Center ? Epochal Tsukuba, Tsukuba Science City, Ibaraki, Japan
    • Disease and Insect Management in Hybrid Rice, 4th International Symposium on Hybrid Rice, Melia Hanoi Hotel, Hanoi, Vietnam
    • Asian Rice Biotechnology Network: Collaborative research with NARES on improving resistance to rice blast , Rice Blast Workshop, 3rd International Rice Blast Conference, Tsukuba International Congress Center ? Epochal Tsukuba Science City, Ibaraki, Japan
    • Development of pathogen stress response rice microarrays at the Workshop on Genomic Approaches to Understanding Virulence of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae, International Rice Congress 2002 , International Rice Research Conference, China International Hi-Tech Convention & Exhibition Center, Beijing, China
    • Bacterial Blight of Rice: The Infection Process and Disease Management at the Workshop on Bacterial Blight of Rice in support of the Hybrid Rice Commercialization Program in the Philippines being advocated by Her Excellency President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, UPLBPhilRice, Los Baños, Laguna
    • Genetic Diversity of the Rice Bacterial Blight Pathogen Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae in Asia, 5th Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries International Workshop on Genetic Resources, Tsukuba, Japan
    • Application of Biotechnology in Pest Management: Current Status, Prospects and Limitations, 32nd Anniversary and Annual Scientific Meeting of the Pest Management Council of the Philippines, Camarines Sur, Bicol Region, Philippines
    • Fungal diseases and plant-parasitic nematode associated with root health in aerobic rice system, 3rd Annual Review & Planning Meeting of the ADB-supported Project: Development and Dissemination of Water-saving Rice Technologies in South Asia, IRRI, Los Banos, Philippines
    • Provision of Genotyping Support Services (GSS): An IRRI perspective, GCP-ARM, Rama Gardens Hotel, Bangkok, Thailand
    • Inheritance and molecular mapping for brown spot resistance in rice, 9th International Congress of Plant Pathology, Torino, Italy
    • Ecologically-based Participatory IPM for Southeast Asia: Diversification schemes for IPM in legume-rice cropping systems in rubber plantations, IPM CRSP Workshop, Manila Hotel, Manila, Philippines
    • Accumulating candidate genes for quantitative resistance to rice blast in a drought-tolerant cultivar using molecular and in silico approaches, Pest Management Council of the Philippines, Inc., 39th Anniversary and Annual Scientific Conference, Asturias Hotel, Puerto Princesa City
    • Genome-enabled research and diagnostics: A comprehensive genome-based resource and pipeline for identification of plant pathogens, Pest Management Council of the Philippines, Inc., 39th Anniversary and Annual Scientific Conference, Asturias Hotel, Puerto Princesa City
    • Possible Causes of Yield Decline: Case studies from the Philippines, Annual Review & Planning Meeting of the ADB-supported Project: Development and Dissemination of Water-saving Rice Technologies in South Asia, CRRI, Cuttack india
    • High throughput gene-based MAS technologies in cereals, 6th Asian Crop Science Association Conference as the part of BioAsia 2007: Biotechnology Sustainable Agriculture for Food Safety and Biofuel at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Center in Bangkok, Thailand
    • Defense response genes contributing to race non-specific resistance to blast in rainfed upland rice, 4th International Rice Blast Conference, Vaya Hotel, Changsha, China
    • Distribution and occurrence of rice blast fungus, Pyricularia grisea in the Philippines, 4th International Rice Blast Conference, Vaya Hotel, Changsha, China
    • Selection of breeding lines for diverse blast resistance, 4th International Rice Blast Conference, Vaya Hotel, Changsha, China
    • Molecular evolution of rice oxalate oxidases, candidate genes for quantitative resistance to rice blast, 4th International Rice Blast Conference, Vaya Hotel, Changsha, China
    • Aerobic rice, a water-saving rice production system, and the risk of yield failure ? a case study from the Philippines, Tropentag 2007, Conference on International Agricultural Research for Development, University of Kassel-Witzenhausen and University of Göttingen
    • Understanding Xanthomonas oryzae/rice interactions to guide disease control, International Conference Center, Jinling Research Institute, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China
    • Bacterial blight resistant hybrid rice parental lines developed via bi-directional marker-aided selection, 2nd International Conference on Bacterial Blight, The International Conference Center, Jinling Research Institute, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China
    • Introgression of effective bacterial blight resistance genes, fragrance gene and QTL mapping for aroma and other grain quality traits in Basmati-derived rice lines, 2nd International Conference on Bacterial Blight, International Conference Center, Jinling Research Institute, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China
    • Confirmation of Xa genes introgressed into elite Basmati derived lines, 2nd International Conference on Bacterial Blight, The International Conference Center, Jinling Research Institute, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China
    • High throughput, low-cost, gene-based trait assay technologies in cereals, GCP Annual Research Meeting, Kopanong Hotel, Benoni, South Africa
    • Accelerating varietal development using high throughput, low cost, gene-based MAS technologies in cereals, GCP Annual Research Meeting, Kopanong Hotel, Benoni, South Africa
    • Stacking disease QTLs with drought tolerance in rice, GCP Annual Research Meeting, Kopanong Hotel, Benoni, South Africa
    • Phylogenomic analyses of rice oxalate oxidases, candidate genes for quantitative resistance to rice blast, APS-SON Joint Meeting, San Diego
    • Functional genomics approach to identification of broad-spectrum resistance genes against rice blast, RDA-IRRI Biennial Meeting, Suwon, Korea
    • Development of low-cost gene-based trait assay technologies in cereals, GCP-ARM, Sao Paolo, Brazil
    • QTLs meet genomics: targeting superior disease QTL alleles in the rice genome, GCP-ARM, Sao Paolo, Brazil
    • Integrating molecular, phenotypic and in silico approaches for quantitative resistance to rice blast, 6th IE Melhus Graduate Student Symposium, Quebec City, Canada
    • New sources identified for resistance to brown spot disease in rice, International Rice Congress, India
    • In silico analysis and molecular characterization of rice oxalate oxidase, a candidate gene associated with quantitative resistance to rice blast, 5th Rice Genetics Symposium, Manila Philippines
    • Associating candidate defense genes with quantitative resistance to rice blast, 5th Rice Genetics Symposium, Manila Philippines

Education

    • University of the Philippines at Los Baños (UPLB), College, Laguna, Bachelor of Science in  Agriculture (major: Microbiology), 1974
    • University of the Philippines at Los Baños, College, Laguna, Master Science in Plant Pathology, 1984
    • Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas, U.S.A., Doctor of Philosophy in Plant Pathology, 1996

Publication

    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al. , (2002) Molecular breeding for the development of blast and bacterial blight resistance in rice
    • Crop Science Volume 42
    • Vera Cruz,C.M. et al, (2003) Candidate Defense Genes from Rice, Barley, and Maize and Their Association with Qualitative and Quantitative Resistance in Rice
    • Molecular Plant-microble Interactions Volume 16, No. 1
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., () Phylogenetic analysis based on ITS sequences and conditions affecting the type of conidial germination of Bipolaris oryzae
    • Volume 55:
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., (2008 ) Phylogenomic relationships of rice oxalate oxidases to the cupin superfamily and their association with disease resistance QTL
    • In Press
    • De Vleesschauwer, D., Yang, Y., Vera Cruz, C.M., () Abscisic acid-induced resistance against the brown spot pathogen Cochliobolus miyabeanus in rice involves MAPK-mediated repression of ethylene signaling
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., (2004) Sustainable disease resistance in rice: current and future strategies
    • Vera Cruz, C.M et al, (2004) Looking Ahead in Rice Disease Research and Management
    • Critical Reviews in Plant Science Volume 23, No. 2
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., () Molecular breeding: marker-assisted selection combined with biolistic transformation for blast and bacterial blight resistance in Indica rice
    • Molecular Breeding Volume 14(1):
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., () Looking ahead in rice disease research and management
    • Crit. Rev Plant Sci Volume 23:
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., () Candidate defense genes from rice, barley, and maize and their association with qualitative and quantitative resistance in rice
    • MPMI Volume 16, No. 1
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., () Using genetic diversity to achieve sustainable rice disease management
    • Plant Disease Volume 87
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., (2008) Rice molecular breeding laboratories in the genomics era: current status and future considerations
    • International Journal of Plant Genomics Volume 2008
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al. , (2002) Variation for aggressiveness within and between lineages of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae
    • - Volume 51
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al. , (2001) Pathogen fitness penalty as a predictor of durability of disease resistance genes
    • Annu. Rev. Phytopathol Volume 39
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al., (2001) Identification of resistance genes effective against rice bacterial blight pathogen in eastern India
    • Plant Disease Volume 85
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al., (2001 ) Bacterial blight of rice
    • Encyclopedia of Plant Pathology Volume 1
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al., (1998) Distribution of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae restriction-modification systems in Asia
    • Applied Environmental Microbiology Volume 64, No. 5
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al., (1998) Epidemic development of rice bacterial blight on deployed resistance genes Xa4, Xa7 and Xa10
    • Plant Disease Volume 82
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et.al., (1996) Measurement of haplotypic variation in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae within a single field by Rep-PCR and RFLP analyses
    • Volume 86:
    • Vera Cruz, C.M., et.al., (1996) Hierarchical analysis of spatial variation of the rice bacterial blight pathogen across diverse agroecosystems in the Philippines
    • Volume 86:
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1995) Genetic diversity of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae in Asia
    • Appl. Environ. Microbiol Volume 61
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1994) Relationship between phylogeny and pathotype for the bacterial blight pathogen of rice
    • Appl. Environ. Microbiol Volume 60:
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1994) Modification of a nonradioactive method for a membrane-based nucleic acid detection
    • Philppine Journal of Science Volume 123
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1992) Changes in race frequency of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae in response to rice cultivars planted in the Philippines
    • Plant Dis Volume 76:
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1989) Screening for bacterial blight resistance in rice
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1986) Colonization of host and non-host plants by epiphytic phytopathogenic bacteria
    • New York:Cambridge Univ. Press
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1985) Comparison of virulence of Xanthomonas campestris pv. oryzae in South China and the Philippines
    • Acta Phytopathologica Sinica Volume 15, No. 2
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1984) Differentiation between Xanthomonas campestris pv. oryzae, Xanthomonas campestris pv. oryzicola and the bacterial brown blotch pathogen by numerical analysis of phenotypic features and protein gel electrophoregrams
    • Journal of Genetic Microbiology Volume 130, No. 11
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1981) Characterization of resistance in rice to bacterial blight
    • Phytopathol. Soc. Jpn Volume 47:
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1980) The alcohol content, total titratable acidity, pH, and microbial count of tuba stored at four temperatures stored for one week
    • Philippine Agriculturist Volume 63, No. 4
    • Vera-Cruz, C.M., et. al., (1979) Variability of Xanthomonas oryzae: Specificity in infection of rice differentials
    • Volume 69(2):
    • Vera-Cruz, C. et. al. , (2008) Sequence polymorphisms confer differential allele regulation of germin-like protein gene family members associated with rice blast QTL
    • - Volume 98
    • Vera Cruz, C.M. et al., (2011 Ap) Evaluation of African Cultivated Rice Oryza glaberrima for Resistance to Bacterial Blight Pages
    • Plant Disease Volume 95, No. 4
    • Ponciano, G., Webba, K., Baia, J., Vera Cruz, C.M., Leacha, J.E., (2004 Mr) Molecular characterization of the avrXa7 locus from Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae field isolates
    • Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology Volume 64, No. 3
    • Vera Cruz, C.M. et al, (2011) Complexity in climate change impacts: an analytical framework for effects mediated by plant disease
    • Journal of Plant Pathology Volume 60
    • Cera Cruz, C.M. et al., (2008) Introgression of Xa4, Xa7 and Xa21 for resistance to bacterial blight in thermosensitive genetic male sterile rice (Oryza sativa L.) for the development of two-line hybrids
    • EUPHYTICA Volume 164, No. 3
    • Vera CRUZ,C.M. et al, (2007) Source and Inheritance of the Within Cultivar Residual Variation Detected in an indica Variety IR64
    • Rice Science Volume 14, No. 1
    • Vera Cruz,C.M. et al, (2006) Dynamics of Xanthomanas oryzae pv. oryzae Populations in Korea and Their Relationship to Known Bacterial Blight Resistance Genes
    • Pythopathology Volume 96, No. 8
    • Vera Cruz,C.M. et al, (2003) Using Genetic Diversity to Achieve Sustainable Rice Disease Management
    • Plant Disease Volume 87, No. 10
    • Vera Cruz,C.M. et al, (2010) A benefit of high temperature: increased effectiveness of a rice bacterial blight disease resistance gene
    • New Pytologist Volume 94, No. 3
    • Vera Cruz,C.M. et al, (2010) Genomics-Based Diagnostic Marker Development for Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae and X. oryzae pv. oryzicola
    • Plant Disease Volume 94, No. 3
    • Vera Cruz,C.M. et al, (2010) Influence of rice development of the function of bacterial blight resistance genes
    • European Journal of Plant Pathology Volume 128, No. 3

Trainings

    • Low-cost, gene-based technologies for MAS application in rice and maize, 2007 Ap 26-29, Africa, China, India, Indonesia, France, Mexico, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam
    • Differential System for Blast Resistance for a Stable Rice Production Environment, 2006 Ag 29-30
    • Pest Management with Minimal Environmental Stress, 2004 N 4-7, Tokyo and Tsukuba, Japan
    • Durable Resistance at the International Rice Congress, 2002 S 16-19, China International Hi-Tech Convention & Exhibition Center, Beijing, China
    • Approaches to Understanding Virulence of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae, 2002 S 16-19, China International Hi-Tech Convention & Exhibition Center, Beijing, China
    • Diagnostics of Seed-Borne Rice Diseases, 2008 Ag 30- S 5, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, India, Brunei
    • Biology of Rice Diseases: Diagnosis and Identification, 2008 O 6-17, Burundi, Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda