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David White
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My research interest is focused on the mechanisms of Ascochyta rabiei pathogenesis on chickpea. Ascochyta blight is a devastating and persistent disease of chickpeas in all chickpea production areas. An alternative to traditional fungicide management for control of blight requires a better understanding of the genetic and molecular mechanisms of pathogenesis. As a molecular biologist with a background in developmental biology, my interests involve the pathogen-plant interaction from the standpoint of fungal persistence and early invasion. My research plan is to isolate and characterize the molecular mechanisms involved in A. rabiei development and pathogenesis using traditional genetic and current molecular techniques. In the course of my work I will consult and relate my findings with plant geneticists and pathologists for effective cultivar selection, germplasm line development, and to incorporate novel methods to increase chickpea resistance to Ascochyta blight.