Researches Plant Virology Research Group

Plant Virology Research Group

The research interests of plant virology Group are covering both basic and applied problems in plant virology and plant virus diagnosis.A main research interest is in tropical plant viruses, plant – virus – vector interactions and specifically the identification and validation of resistant genes by knockdown experiments. Along with, the focus is on Begomoviruses, Barley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV), Sugarcane mosaic virus (SCMV), and Citrus tristeza virus (CTV) diversity, multiple transgenic resistance(s) in significant cash crops and development of antibodies against them.A curiosity is to standardize a protocol for Agrobacterium mediated wheat/sugarcane transformation and to create transgenic resistance in model plant system targeting Barley yellow dwarf virus, Sugarcane mosaic virus and Citrus tristeza virus. A great intension is the utilization of plant system for the development of vaccines against human viral diseases. 

Focus of the laboratory:

BegomovirusesBarley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV)Sugarcane mosaic virus (SCMV)Citrus tristeza virus (CTV)Development of Transgenic resistance in significant cash cropsDevelopment of diagnostic kit(s) against plant virus

Laboratory members:

Hafiz Muhammad Khalid (PhD student)Zeeshan Khan (MS student)Nida Ali (MS student)Ayesha Masood (MS student)Shahrukh Khan (MS student)Manal Arshad (MS student)Khadija Ahmad (MS student)Kiran Kinat Shirin (MS student)Sana Tariq (MS student) 

Current Projects:

1. Sugarcane productivity enhancement by development of transgenic virus resistance through expression of hairpinRNA (hpRNA) carrying Sugarcane mosaic virus derived sequences. (As PI).2.     Development of transgenic resistance in Solanum tuberosum L. against abiotic stress, by the expression of DREB protein gene (As Co-PI). 

Research Funding:

Higher Education Commission of Pakistan (HEC)

Selected publications:·      

Anwar, S., Tahir, M. (2018). Identification of a new begomovirus infecting Duranta repens in Pakistan. Archives of Virology. 163:809-813.·      Shuja, M.N., Tahir, M., and Briddon, R.W. (2017). Occurrence of a recombinant molecule carrying sequences derived from an alphasatellite and the helper virus in cotton leaf curl disease affected cotton. Tropical Plant Pathology. doi. 10.1007/s40858-017-0161-5·      Akbar, S., Tahir, M., Wang, Ming-Bo, Liu, Q. (2017). Expression Analysis of Hairpin RNA Carrying Sugarcane mosaic virus (SCMV) Derived Sequences and Transgenic Resistance Development in a Model Rice Plant. BioMed Research International.·      Tahir, M., Amin, I,. Haider, M.S., Mansoor, S., Briddon, R.W. (2015). Ageratum enation virus – a begomovirus of weeds with the potential to infect crops. Viruses 07: 647-65. doi: 10.3390/v7020647.·      Ali, M., Hameed, S, Tahir, M. (2014). Luteovirus – insights into pathogenicity. Archives of Virology. 159: 2853-2860.

Shuja,.M.N., Briddon, R.W., Tahir. M. (2014). Identification of a distinct strain of Cotton leaf curl Burewala virusArchives of Virology159: 2787-2790.