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

Beukes CW, Venter SN, Steenkamp ET. (2021) The history and distribution of nodulating Paraburkholderia, a potential inoculum for Fynbos forage species. Grass and Forage Science 76:10-32. 10.1111/gfs.12522
Liu LL, Wu WX, Chen SF. (2021) Species diversity and distribution characteristics of Calonectria in five soil layers in a Eucalyptus plantation. Journal of Fungi 7:857. 10.3390/jof7100857 PDF
Chang R-L, Zhang X, Hongli S, Zhao G, Yuan X, Liu T, Bose T, Dai M. (2021) Ophiostomatoid species associated with pine trees (Pinus spp.) infested by Cryphalus piceae from eastern China, including five new species. Mycokeys 83:181-208. 10.3897/mycokeys.83.70925
Duong AT, Aylward J, Ametrano CG, Poudel E, Santana QC, Wilken PM, Martin A, Arun-Chinnappa KS, De Vos L, DiStefano I, Grewe F, Huhndorf S, Lumbsch HT, Rakoma JR, Steenkamp ET, Sun Y, van der Nest MA, Wingfield MJ, Yilmaz N, Wingfield BD. (2021) Draft genome assembly of Fusarium pilosicola, Meredithiella fracta, Niebla homalea, Pyrenophora teres hybrid WAC10721, and Teratosphaeria viscida. IMA Fungus 12(1):30. 10.1186/s43008-021-00077-9
Wilson AM, Wilken PM, Wingfield MJ, Wingfield BD. (2021) Genetic networks that govern sexual reproduction in the Pezizomycotina. Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews 85(4):e00020-21. 10.1128/MMBR.00020-21. PDF