Dr. Korsi Dumenyo is a Molecular Plant Pathologist and Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Agricultural Sciences. He obtained his PhD in Plant Pathology/Microbial Genetics from University of Missouri - Columbia in 2000. Since then, his research has been on the genetics and genomics of plant-associated bacteria. His research interest is in genetic and genomic analysis of microbial interactions with each other and with host plants. The knowledge created from this fundamental research can be used to design management strategies for the diseases. Projects in his laboratory use contemporary and molecular approaches to study plant-associated and environmental microbial organisms, and the mechanisms involved in processes such as plant disease and biocontrol. Recent activities have been focused on soft rot disease of fruits and vegetables caused by a group of bacteria called soft rot erwiniae (or the new name Pectobacterium). His lab has been doing functional characterization of soft rot Erwinia genes involved in pathogenic interactions with the host. The goal is to catalogue the pathogen genes involved in interaction with host plants to produce disease and to probe into their roles in this interaction. He is also working on non-pathogenic plant surface microbes which interact with the pathogenic microbes. His lab is training both graduate and undergraduate students and in the past, he has taught Introductory Microbial Physiology and Introductory Microbial Physiology lab. He is developing more courses for the future.