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Think and Do The Extraordinary
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Tim Sit

Principal Research Scholar – Plant Virology

Varsity Research Building 1106


Area(s) of Expertise

Plant Virology, Molecular Biology


My lab works on several projects involving viruses that infect the following hosts:

  1. plants – Red clover necrotic mosaic virus (RCNMV), Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) and other tobamoviruses
  2. plant parasitic nematodes (Soybean cyst nematode; SCN)

We use RCNMV as a model for viral pathogenesis. Specifically, we’re looking at the packaging, movement and transmission of the virus. Research on TMV focuses on the seed-borne transmission of the virus in flue-cured tobacco and is a collaborative project with Carol Wilkinson (Virginia Tech). The research on viruses infecting SCN involves determining the physical location of the viruses within the nematode as well as their potential transmission mode and is a collaboration with Rick Davis (Entomology and Plant Pathology).

We are also involved in a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation project looking at combating nematode infestations of yam and potato crops in Africa by employing a fiber based wrap impregnated with nematicide at planting and is a collaboration with Charlie Opperman (Entomology and Plant Pathology), Rick Davis (Entomology and Plant Pathology), Saad Khan (Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering) and Lokendra Pal (Forest Biomaterials).

Additionally, we serve as willing collaborators to all disciplines that are interested in learning about/using molecular tools to diagnose, analyze or uncover insights into their organism/protein/nucleic acid of choice. We’ve had collaborations in the past with Horticulture, Toxicology, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Textiles, Entomology and many others.


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