Dr Siphathele Sibanda

Postdoctoral Fellow


Biochemistry, Genetics and Microbiology
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Xanthomonas vasicola pv. vasculorum (Xvv) was found to pose an “emerging” threat to Eucalyptus trees through host shift or host jump. The emergency of the new diseases will have devastating effects to subsistence growers and is a possible threat to the food and forestry industries. It is possible for a pathogen to express unique pathogenicity factors in different hosts. Moreover, a pathogen could lose or acquire pathogenicity factors resulting in emergency of new diseases. In my Postdoctoral research, I am investigating the pathogenicity factors or molecular factors linked to possible host shift or host jump in Xvv. To identify the genes that are expressed during infection in different hosts, Eucalyptus, sugar cane and maize, dual RNA sequencing of the hosts and the bacterial pathogen will be employed. In addition, I will be investigating the EanI/R quorum sensing system in a plant pathogenic bacterium, Pantoea ananatis.





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Siphathele Sibanda, Stanford Kwenda, Collins K. Tanui, Divine Shyntum, Teresa Coutinho, Lucy Moleleki. (2018) Transcriptome profiling reveals the EanI/R quorum sensing regulon in Pantoea ananatis LMG 2665T. Genes 9(3):148. 10.3390/genes9030148
Sibanda S, Theron J, Shyntum DY, Moleleki LN, Coutinho TA. (2016) Characterization of two LuxI/R homologs in Pantoea ananatis LMG 2665 T. Canadian Journal of Microbiology 62(11):893-903. 10.1139/cjm-2016-0143