Dr. Joe Louis

Joe's picture
Assistant Professor of Entomology
Department of Entomology
212 Entomology Hall
University of Nebraska
Lincoln, Nebraska 68583-0816
Telephone: (402) 472-8098
FAX: (402) 472-4687


80% Research, 20% Teaching

  1. BS, Agriculture, Kerala Agricultural University, 2003
  2. MS, Entomology, Kansas State University, 2006
  3. PhD, Molecular Biology, University of North Texas, 2011
Professional Interests - Plant resistance to insects, Plant signaling mechanisms, Induced defenses, Insect effectors

Professional Responsibilities
The Molecular Plant-Insect Interactions Lab’s research focus is on identifying the key components/genes/signaling mechanisms that are involved in modulating plant defenses upon insect herbivory and to understand the mechanisms by which insect salivary proteins/effectors alter the plant defense responses.
ENTO 409/809, Insect Control by Host Plant Resistance
ENTO 835, Chemical Ecology of Insect-Plant Interactions

  1. Varsani S, Grover S, Zhou S, Koch KG, Huang P-C, Kolomiets M, Williams WP, Heng-Moss T, Sarath G, Luthe DS, Jander G and Louis J (2019). 12-Oxo-phytodienoic acid acts as a regulator of maize defense against corn leaf aphid. Plant Physiology, DOI: 10.1104/pp.18.01472
  2. Tetreault HM, Grover S, Scully ED, Gries T, Palmer N, Sarath G, Louis J and Sattler SE. (2019). Global responses of resistant and susceptible sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) to sugarcane aphid (Melanaphis sacchari). Frontiers in Plant Science (in press).
  3. Grover S, Wojahn B, Varsani S, Sattler SE and Louis J (2019). Resistance to greenbugs in the sorghum nested association mapping population. Arthropod-Plant Interactions (in press).
  4. Chapman K, Marchi-Werle L, Hunt TE, Heng-Moss T and Louis J (2018). Abscisic and jasmonic acids contribute to soybean tolerance to the soybean aphid (Aphis glycines Matsumura). Scientific Reports, DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-33477-w
  5. Nalam VJ, Louis J, Patel M and Shah J (2018). Arabidopsis-Green Peach Aphid interaction: rearing the insect, no-choice and fecundity assays, and electrical penetration graph technique to study insect feeding behavior. Bio-protocol, 8(15): e2950.
  6. Basu S, Varsani S and Louis J (2018). Altering plant defenses: Herbivore-associated molecular patterns and effector arsenal of chewing herbivores. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions, 31(1): 13-21.
  7. Mondal HA, Louis J, Archer L, Patel M, Nalam VJ, Sarowar S, Sivapalan V, Root DD and Shah J (2018). Arabidopsis ACTIN-DEPOLYMERIZING FACTOR3 is required for controlling aphid feeding from the phloem. Plant Physiology, 176: 879-890.
  8. Koch KG, Donze-Reiner T, Baird LM, Louis J, Amundsen K, Sarath G, Bradshaw JD, Heng-Moss T (2018). Evaluation of greenbug and yellow sugarcane aphid feeding behavior on resistant and susceptible switchgrass cultivars. BioEnergy Research, 8: 165-174.
  9. Nalam VJ, Louis J and Shah J (2018). Plant defense against aphids, the pest extraordinaire. Plant Science, DOI: 10.1016/j.plantsci.2018.04.027
  10. Koch K, Chapman K, Louis J, Heng-Moss T and Sarath, G (2016). Plant tolerance: A unique approach to control hemipteran pests. Frontiers in Plant Science, 7:1363.
  11. Ray S, Basu S, Rivera-Vega L, Acevedo FE, Louis J, Felton GW and Luthe DS (2016). Lessons from the far end: caterpillar frass-induced defenses in maize, rice, cabbage and tomato. Journal of Chemical Ecology, 42:1130-1141.
  12. Varsani S, Basu S, Williams WP, Felton GW, Luthe DS and Louis J (2016). Intraplant communication in maize contributes to defense against insects. Plant Signaling & Behavior, 11, e1212800
  13. Louis J, Basu S, Varsani S, Castano-Duque L, Jiang V, Williams WP, Felton GW and Luthe DS. (2015). Ethylene contributes to maize insect resistance1-mediated maize defense against the phloem-sap sucking corn leaf aphid. Plant Physiology, 169: 313-324.
  14. Louis J and Shah J (2015). Plant defence against aphids: the PAD4 signalling nexus. Journal of Experimental Botany, 66 (2): 449-454.
  15. Louis J, Luthe DS and Felton GW (2013). Salivary signals of European corn borer induce indirect defenses in tomato. Plant Signaling & Behavior, 8, e27318.
  16. Louis J, Peiffer M, Ray S, Luthe DS and Felton GW (2013). Host-specific salivary elicitor(s) of European Corn Borer (Ostrinia nubilalis) induce defenses in tomato and maize. New Phytologist, 199: 63-73.
  17. Louis J and Shah J (2013). Arabidopsis thaliana - Myzus persicae interaction: shaping the understanding of plant defense against phloem-feeding aphids. Frontiers in Plant Science, 4: 213.
  18. Cao T, Lahiri I, Singh V, Louis J, Shah J and Ayre BG (2013). Metabolic engineering of raffinose-family oligosaccharides in the phloem reveals alterations in carbon partitioning and enhances resistance to green peach aphid. Frontiers in Plant Science, 4: 263.
  19. Louis J, Gobbato E, Mondal HA, Feys BJ, Parker JE and Shah J (2012). Discrimination of Arabidopsis PAD4 activities in defense against green peach aphid and pathogens. Plant Physiology, 158: 1860-1872. (Cover article April 2012).
  20. Louis J, Mondal HA and Shah J (2012). Green peach aphid infestation induces Arabidopsis PHYTOALEXIN DEFICIENT4 expression at site of stylet penetration. Plant Signaling & Behavior, 7: 11, 1431-1433.
  21. Singh V, Louis J, Ayre B, Reese JC and Shah J (2011). TREHALOSE PHOSPHATE SYNTHASE11-dependent trehalose metabolism promotes Arabidopsis thaliana defense against the phloem-feeding insect, Myzus persicae. The Plant Journal, 67 (1): 94-104.
  22. Zhu L, Reese JC, Louis J, Campbell L and Chen MS (2011). Electrical penetration graph (EPG) analysis of the feeding behavior of soybean aphids on soybean cultivars with antibiosis. Journal of Economic Entomology, 104 (6): 2068-2072.
  23. Louis J, Kukula K-L, Singh V, Reese JC, Jander G and Shah J (2010). Antibiosis against the green peach aphid requires the Arabidopsis thaliana MYZUS PERSICAE INDUCED LIPASE1 gene. The Plant Journal, 64 (5): 800-811.
  24. Pallipparambil GR, Reese JC, Avila CA, Louis J and Goggin FL (2010). Mi-mediated aphid resistance in tomato: tissue localization and impact on the feeding behavior of two potato aphid isolates with differing levels of virulence. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, 135: 295-307.
  25. Louis J, Leung Q, Pegadaraju V, Reese JC and Shah J (2010). PAD4-dependent antibiosis contributes to the ssi2-conferred hyper-resistance to the green peach aphid. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions, 23 (5): 618-627.
  26. Mutti NS, Louis J, Pappan LK, Pappan K, Begum K, Chen MS, Park Y, Dittmer N, Marshall J, Reese JC and Reeck GR (2008). A protein from the salivary glands of the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, is essential in feeding on a host plant. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 105 (29): 9965-9969.
  27. Pegadaraju V, Louis J, Singh V, Reese JC, Bautor J, Feys BJ, Cook G, Parker JE and Shah J (2007). Phloem-based resistance to green peach aphid is controlled by Arabidopsis PHYTOALEXIN DEFICIENT4 without its signaling partner ENHANCED DISEASE SUSCEPTIBILITY1. The Plant Journal, 52 (2): 332-341.
  28. Diaz-Montano J, Reese JC, Louis J, Campbell L and Schapaugh WT (2007). Feeding behavior by the soybean aphid (Hemiptera: Aphididae) on resistant and susceptible soybean genotypes. Journal of Economic Entomology, 100 (3): 984-989.
  29. Voothuluru P, Meng J, Khajuria C, Louis J, Zhu L, Starkey S, Wilde GE, Baker CA and Smith CM (2006). Categories and inheritance of resistance to Russian wheat aphid (Homoptera: Aphididae) biotype 2 in a selection from wheat cereal introduction 2401. Journal of Economic Entomology, 99 (5): 1854-1861.
Book Chapters
  1. Felton GW, Chung SC, Estrada-Hernandez MG, Louis J, Peiffer M and Tian D (2014). Herbivore oral secretions are the first line of protection against plant induced defenses. Annual Plant Reviews, 47: 37-76.
  2. Louis J, Singh V and Shah J (2012). Arabidopsis thaliana aphid interaction. The Arabidopsis Book, 10: e0159. (Invited book chapter).
  3. Parker JE, Rietz S, Wirthmiler L, Bartsch M, Bautor J, Pegadaraju V, Louis J, Singh V, Reese J and Shah J (2008). Processes in plant resistance to invasive pathogens and probing insects. In "Biology of Plant-Microbe Interactions", Vol 6. M. Lorito, S. L. Woo, and F. Scala, eds. IS- MPMI, St Paul, MN.
Selected Honors and Awards
  • Harold and Esther Edgerton Junior Faculty Award, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 2016
  • Eric E. Conn Young Investigator Award, American Society of Plant Biologists, 2015
  • International Congress on Insect Neurochemistry and Neurophysiology (ICINN) Student Recognition Award in Insect Physiology, Biochemistry, Toxicology, and Molecular Biology, Entomological Foundation, 2011.
  • Graduate Student Recognition Award for Academic Excellence and Performance, Toulouse Graduate School, University of North Texas, 2011.
  • John Henry Comstock Graduate Student Award, Entomological Society of America, 2010.
  • Love of Learning Award, Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, 2010.
  • American Society of Plant Biologists Travel Grant, 2010.
  • Lillian & Alex Feir Graduate Student Travel Award in Insect Physiology, Biochemistry or Molecular Biology, Entomological Foundation, 2009.
  • Gamma Sigma Delta Outstanding Graduate Student Research Award (MS), Kansas State University, 2007.