The DSI-NRF Centre of Excellence in Plant Health Biotechnology (CPHB, previously the CTHB) promotes the health of plants and trees. Research conducted under the umbrella of this Centre address some of the burning national challenges (particularly in terms of food security, sustainable use of natural resources, and economic growth), while at the same time building human capacity in these important arenas. The vision of the Centre is to utilize world-class scientific research and biotechnology for (i) promoting the long-term health and sustainable use of socioeconomically important plants, including trees and (ii) facilitating inclusive postgraduate education. In doing so, the CPHB would contribute to the protection of food and plant resources in South Africa (and to some extent Africa), as well as develop human capacity in this important field.

The CPHB is intimately linked to the Tree Protection Cooperative Programme (TPCP), a research programme that has a track record of more than two decades in dealing with the pests and diseases of commercially important forestry species.

The CPHB is structured as a virtual Centre of Excellence that conducts scientific research via a collaborative network, with the node of the network represented by researchers at UP. In addition to the UP group, this network involves researchers and their postgraduate students from other Higher Education Institutions in South Africa.

 

Contact information

Director of the CPHB: Prof Emma Steenkamp

Program manager of the CPHB: Prof Martin Coetzee

CHPB Administrator:  Ms Heidi Fysh

 

New Publications

Morgan SW, Read DA, Burger JT, Pietersen G. (2023) Diversity of viroids infecting grapevines in the South African Vitis germplasm collection. Virus Genes 10.1007/s11262-023-01971-7
Hiroyuki S, Marincowitz S, Roux J, Wingfield BD, Wingfield MJ. (2023) First report of canker caused by Chrysoporthe austroafricana on the plantation-grown eucalypt Corymbia henryi in South Africa. Forestry :1-9. 10.1093/forestry/cpac054
Bose T, Dovey S, Brachmann A, Witfeld F, Begerow D, Kemler M, Roux J, Slippers B, Vivas M, Wingfield MJ. (2023) Retention of post-harvest residues enhances soil fungal biodiversity in Eucalyptus plantations. Forest Ecology and Management 532:120806. 10.1016/j.foreco.2023.120806
David Read, Bernard Slippers, Emma Steenkamp. (2022) Genomic characterization of a novel potyvirus infecting Barleria repens in South Africa. Archives of Virology 10.1007/s00705-022-05662-w
Bian C, Takashi H, Houbraken J, Visagie CM, Ban S, Yaguchi T, D'hooge E, Sklenár F, Kusuya Y, Hubka V. (2022) Reducing the number of accepted species in Aspergillus series Nigri. Studies in Mycology 102:95–132. 10.3114/sim.2022.102.03
David Read, Ronel Roberts, Goddy Prinsloo, Genevieve Thompson. (2022) Genomic and phylogenetic characterization of wheat yellows virus, a novel tenuivirus infecting wheat in South Africa. Archives of Virology 10.1007/s00705-022-05649-7
Wanjofu EI, Venter SN, Beukes CW, Steenkamp ET, Gwata ET, Muema EK. (2022) Nodulation and Growth Promotion of Chickpea by Mesorhizobium Isolates from Diverse Sources. MDPI-Microorganisms 10(12):1-16.
Osborn RK, Castro J, Duong TA, Hulcr J, Li Y, Martínez M, Cognato AI. (2022) Symbiotic Fungi Associated With Xyleborine Ambrosia Beetles (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae) and the Imperative of Global Collaboration. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 10.1093/aesa/saac024
Pham NQ, Marincowitz S, Chen SF, Rodas CA, Wingfield MJ. (2022) Soil-borne Calonectria (Hypocreales, Nectriaceae) associated with Eucalyptus plantations in Colombia. MycoKeys 94:17-35. 10.3897/mycokeys.94.96301
Visagie CM, Yilmaz N. (2022) Along the footpath of Penicillium discovery: Six new species from the Woodville Big Tree Forest Trail. Mycologia 10.1080/00275514.2022.2135915