Matthew James Moscou

alt text 0000-0003-2098-6818
alt text D-5266-2011


The Sainsbury Laboratory
Norwich Research Park
United Kingdom

Contact information

Office: +44 (0) 1603 450 296


Iowa State University, Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, Ph.D., 2010
University of California, Riverside, Pure Mathematics, B.S., 2004
University of California, Riverside, Physics, B.S., 2004


Deciphering the transcriptional regulation and response of barley to obligate fungal biotroph invasion
Advisors: Roger Wise and Julie Dickerson

Professional Experience

2014-present Group Leader, The Sainsbury Laboratory, UK
2013-2014 Team Leader, 2Blades Group, The Sainsbury Laboratory, UK
2010-2012 Post-doctoral Research Associate, 2Blades Group, The Sainsbury Laboratory, UK
2005-2010 Graduate Research Assistant, Iowa State University
Summer 2009 Summer Intern, Syngenta Seeds, Inc. – Statistical Genetics Research Group
2004-2005 Programmer/Analyst I, University of California, Riverside

Teaching, Mentoring, and Supervision

Supervisor of four Ph.D. and four Msc students (TSL, 2011-present)
Lecturer at the University of East Anglia for BIO-03C46 (Plant Biotechnology for Sustainable Food Production) (UEA, 2015)
EMBO Practical Course on Plant-Microbe Interactions, Lecturer (TSL, 2012)
Molecular Biology of Plant-Pathogen Interaction, Guest Lecturer (ISU, 2008)
Computational and Systems Biology Summer Institute, Lecturer/Teaching Assistant (ISU, 2007)
National Science Foundation, Research Experience for Teachers, Mentor (ISU, 2006)
Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Summer Institute, Lecturer/Teaching Assistant (ISU, 2006)

Fellowships and Awards

Human Frontier Science Program Fellow, Long-Term Fellowship, 2011-2014
Graduate Research Excellence Award, Iowa State University, 2010
BioVision.Nxt Fellow, 2009
James Cornette Research Fellowship in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, Iowa State University, 2008



Yu, G., Champouret, N., Steuernagel, B., Olivera, P.D., Simmons, J. Williams, C. Johnson, R., Moscou, M.J., Hernández-Pinzón, I., Green, P., Sela, H., Millet, E., Jones, J.D.G., Ward, E.R., Steffenson, B.J., and Wulff, B.B.H. (2017) Discovery and characterization of two new stem rust resistance genes in Aegilops sharonensis. Theoretical and Applied Genetics Accepted. doi:10.1007/s00122-017-2882-8

Hisano, H., Meints, B., Moscou, M.J., Cistue, L., Echávarri, B., Sato, K., and Hayes, P.M. (2017) Selection of transformation-efficient barley genotypes based on TFA (transformation amenability) haplotype and higher resolution mapping of the TFA loci. Plant Cell Reports 36:611–620 doi:10.1007/s00299-017-2107-2

Bettgenhaeuser, J., Corke, F.M.K., Opanowicz, M., Green, P., Hernández-Pinzón, I., Doonan, J.H., Moscou, M.J. (2017) Natural variation in Brachypodium links vernalization and flowering time loci as major flowering determinants. Plant Physiology 173:256-268 doi:10.1104/pp.16.00813


Le Fevre, R., O’Boyle, B., Moscou, M.J., and Schornack S. (2016) Colonization of barley by the broad-host hemibiotrophic pathogen Phytophthora palmivora uncovers a leaf development dependent involvement of MLO. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions 29: 385-395 doi:10.1094/MPMI-12-15-0276-R

Dawson, A.M., Ferguson, J., Gardiner, M., Green, P., Hubbard, A., and Moscou, M.J. (2016) Isolation and fine mapping of Rps6: An intermediate host resistance gene in barley to wheat stripe rust. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 129: 831-843 doi:10.1007/s00122-015-2659-x


Dawson, A.M., Bettgenhaeuser, J., Gardiner, M., Green, P., Hernández-Pinzón, I., Hubbard, A., and Moscou, M.J. (2015) The development of quick, robust, quantitative phenotypic assays for describing the host-nonhost landscape to stripe rust. Frontiers in Plant Science 6: 876 doi:10.3389/fpls.2015.00876

Muñoz-Amatriaín, M., Lonardi, S., Luo, M. C., Madishetty, K., Svensson, J.T., Moscou, M.J., Wanamaker, S., Jiang, T., Kleinhofs, A., Muehlbauer, G.J., Wise, R., Stein, N., Ma, Y., Rodriguez, E., Kudrna, D., Bhat, P., Chao, S., Condamine, P., Heinen, S., Resnik, J., Wing, R., Witt, H., Alpert, M., Beccuti, M., Bozdag, S., Cordero, F., Mirebrahim, H., Ounit, R., Wu, Y., You, F., Zheng, J., Doležel, J., Grimwood, J., Schmutz, J., Duma, D., Altschmied, L., Blake, T., Bregitzer, P., Cooper, L., Dilbirligi, M., Falk, A., Feiz, L., Graner, A., Gustafson, P., Hayes, P.M., Lemaux, P., Mammadov, J., and Close, T.J. (2015) Sequencing of 15 622 gene-bearing BACs clarifies the gene-dense regions of the barley genome. The Plant Journal 84: 216-227 doi:10.1111/tpj.12959

Knight, E., Binnie, A., Draeger, T., Moscou, M., Rey, M., Sucher, J., Mehra, S., King, I., and Moore, G. (2015) Mapping the ‘breaker’ element of the gametocidal locus proximal to a block of sub-telomeric heterochromatin on the long arm of chromosome 4Ssh of Aegilops sharonensis. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 128(6):1049-1059 doi:10.1007/s00122-015-2489-x


Wulff, B.H.H. and Moscou, M.J. (2014) Strategies for transferring resistance into wheat: from wide crosses to GM cassettes. Frontiers in Plant Science 5:692 doi:10.3389/fpls.2014.00664

Bettgenhaeuser, J., Gilbert, M., Ayliffe, M., Moscou, M.J. (2014) Nonhost resistance to rust pathogens – a continuation of continua. Frontiers in Plant Science 5:664 doi:10.3389/fpls.2014.00664


Bouyioukos, C., Moscou, M.J., Champouret, N., Hernández-Pinzón I., Ward E.R. and Wulff B.B.H. (2013) Characterisation and analysis of the Aegilops sharonensis transcriptome, a wild relative of wheat in the Sitopsis section. PLoS ONE 8(8): e72782. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0072782

Ayliffe, M. Singh, D., Park, R., Moscou, M., Pryor, T. (2013) The infection of Brachypodium distachyon with selected grass rust pathogens. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions 26(8): 946-957 doi:10.1094/MPMI-01-13-0017-R

Schornack, S., Moscou, M.J., Ward, E.R., and Horvath, D. M. (2013) Engineering plant disease resistance based on TAL effectors. Annual Review of Phytopathology 51:383-406 doi:10.1146/annurev-phyto-082712-102255


The International Barley Genome Sequencing Consortium (IBSC). (2012) A physical, genetic and functional sequence assembly of the barley genome. Nature 491: 711-716 doi:10.1038/nature11543

Moeller, J.R., Moscou, M.J., Bancroft, T., Skadsen, R.W., Wise, R.P., and Whitham, S.A. (2012) Differential accumulation of host mRNAs on polyribosomes during obligate pathogen-plant interactions. Molecular BioSystems 8:2153-2165 doi:10.1039/C2MB25014D


Muñoz-Amatriaín, M.alt text, Moscou, M.J.alt text, Bhat, P.R., Svensson, J.T., Bartoš, J., Suchánková, P., Šimková, H., Endo, T.R., Fenton, R. D., Wu, Y., Lonardi, S., Castillo, A.M., Chao, S., Cistué, L., Cuesta-Marcos, A., Forrest, K., Hayden, M.J., Hayes, P.M., Horsley, R.D., Kleinhofs, A., Moody, D., Sato, K., Vallés, M.P., Wulff, B.B.H., Muehlbauer, G.J., Doležel, J., and Close, T.J. (2011) An improved consensus linkage map of barley based on flow-sorted chromosomes and SNP markers. The Plant Genome 4(3): 238-249 doi:10.3835/plantgenome2011.08.0023

Moscou, M.J., Lauter, N., Steffenson, B., and Wise, R.P. (2011) Quantitative and qualitative stem rust resistance factors in barley are associated with transcriptional suppression of defense regulons. PLoS Genetics 7(7): e1002208 doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1002208

Moscou, M.J., Lauter, N., Caldo, R.A., Nettleton, D., and Wise, R.P. (2011) Quantitative and temporal definition of the Mla transcriptional regulon during barley-powdery mildew interactions. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions 24(6): 694-705 doi:10.1094/MPMI-09-10-0211


Close, T.J., Bhat, P.R., Lonardi, S., Wu, Y., Rostoks, N., Ramsay, L., Druka, A., Stein, N., Svensson, J.T., Wanamaker, S., Bozdag, S., Roose, M.L., Moscou, M.J., Chao, S., Varshney, R., Szűcs, P., Sato, K., Hayes, P.M., Matthews, D.E., Kleinhofs, A., Muehlbauer, G. J., DeYoung, J., Marshall, D.F., Madishetty, K., Fenton, R.D., Condamine, P., Graner, A., Waugh, R. 2009. Development and implementation of high-throughput SNP genotyping in barley. BMC Genomics 10: 582 doi:10.1186/1471-2164-10-582

Moscou, M.J. and Bogdanove, A. (2009) A simple cipher governs DNA recognition by TAL effectors. Science 326: 1501 doi:10.1126/science.1178817

Xi, L., Moscou, M.J., Meng, Y., Xu, W. Caldo, R.A., Shaver, M., Nettleton, D., Wise, R.P. (2009) Transcript-based cloning of HvRRP46, a regulator of rRNA processing and R gene-independent cell death in barley-powdery mildew interactions. Plant Cell 21: 3280-3295 doi:10.1105/tpc.109.066167

Meng, Y.alt text, Moscou, M.J.alt text, Wise, R.P. (2009) Blufensin1 negatively impacts basal defense in response to barley powdery mildew. Plant Physiology 149(1): 271-285 doi:10.1104/pp.108.129031


Lauter, N., Moscou, M.J., Habinger, J., Moose, S. (2008) Quantitative genetic dissection of shoot architecture traits in maize: Towards a functional genomics approach. The Plant Genome 1(2): 99-110 doi:10.3835/plantgenome2008.06.0385

Potokina, E., Druka, A., Luo, Z., Moscou, M., Wise, R., Waugh, R., Kearsey, M. (2008) Tissue-dependent limited pleiotropy affects gene expression in barley. Plant Journal 56(2): 287-296 doi:10.1111/j.1365-313X.2008.03601.x


Wise, R.P., Moscou, M.J., Bogdanove, A.J., Whitham, S.A. (2007) Transcript profiling in host–pathogen interactions. Annual Review of Phytopathology 45: 329-369 doi:10.1146/annurev.phyto.45.011107.143944


Clare, S., Kitcher, W., Gardiner, M., Green, P., Hubbard, A., and Moscou, M.J. (2016) Defining the genetic architecture of stripe rust resistance in the barley accession HOR 1428. bioRxiv 093773 doi:10.1101/093773

Conference Publications

Champouret N, Moscou MJ, Bouyioukos C, Steuernagel B, Hernández-Pinzón I, Green P, Kaufman J, Olivera PD, Pretorius Z, Millet E, Steffenson BJ, Ward ER and Wulff BBH (2011) A pipeline for cloning resistance genes effective against African stem rust races from the diploid wheat relative Aegilops sharonensis In: Proc Borlaug Global Rust Initiative, June 13–19. McIntosh, R. (ed). pp. 66–74

Wise, R. P., Meng, Y., Moscou, M. J., Xu, W. 2009. Regulators of innate immunity in cereal-fungal interactions. In Biology of Plant Microbe Interactions, Volume 7. International Society for Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions, St. Paul, MN

Moscou, M.J., Caldo, R.A., Lauter, N., Wise, R.P. 2008. Construction of coexpression networks to explore barley-powdery mildew interactions. Paper 113 in: Biology of Plant Microbe Interactions, Volume 6. M. Lorito, S. L. Woo, and F. Scala, eds. International Society for Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions, St. Paul, MN

Invited Talks

Dissecting the genetic architecture of nonhost resistance to stripe rust. Institut de Recherche pour le Développement. Montpellier, France. April 21, 2017

The process of discovery: How a conversation at a conference led to the development of a research program. Plant Sciences Graduate Student Symposium. Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. April 1, 2017

Dissecting the genetic architecture of nonhost resistance to stripe rust. University of Saskatchewan. Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. March 30, 2017

Accessing natural variation in Brachypodium distachyon: Development of the ABR6 x Bd21 RIL population. Plant and Animal Genome Conference. San Diego, CA, USA. January 17, 2017

Genomics of the barley immune system. Plant and Animal Genome Conference. San Diego, CA, USA. January 14, 2017

Engineering durable disease resistance. Gatsby Plant Science Network Meeting. Oxford, United Kingdom. September 9, 2016

Dual specificity at the Mla locus confers resistance to barley powdery mildew and wheat stripe rust. International Powdery Mildew Symposium. Portland, Oregon, USA. July 16, 2016

The barley ‘nibblerome’: Defining the set of NB-LRR-type R genes from a diverse collection of barley. International Barley Genetics Symposium. Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. June 28, 2016

Map-based cloning of host and nonhost resistance genes in barley. USDA-ARS, Cereal Crops Research Unit, North Dakota State University, Fargo, North Dakota, USA, December 1, 2015

Dissecting the genetic architecture of nonhost resistance to stripe rust. Plant Biotic Stresses & Resistance Mechanisms II, Vienna, Austria. July 3, 2015

Dissecting the basis of host species specificity and nonhost resistance to wheat stripe rust. Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany. November 24, 2014

Nonhost resistance as a potential source for controlling wheat rust disease. International Congress on Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions, Rhodes, Greece. July 10, 2014

Harnessing the loci that determine the inappropriate host status of barley to engineer durable resistance to wheat stripe rust. North American Barley Researcher Workshop, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. July 2, 2014

Why does wheat stripe rust not infect barley? Plant and Animal Genome Conference, San Diego, California, USA. January 11, 2014

Deciphering the genetic architecture of host species specificity and nonhost resistance to wheat stripe rust. Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon, USA. January 8, 2014

The genetic architecture underlying host species specificity of stripe rust. Washington State University, Pullman, Washington, USA. January 6, 2014

Harnessing the loci underlying host species specificity to engineer durable resistance to wheat stripe rust. Keystone Symposia: Plant Immunity: Pathways and Translation. Big Sky, Montana, USA. April 7th-April 12th, 2013

Host species specificity to stripe rust in barley colocalizes with loci conditioning resistance to powdery mildew. University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA. March 28th, 2013

spst1, a novel susceptibility gene in barley to wheat stripe rust. 13th International Cereal Rust and Powdery Mildew Conference. Beijing, China. August 28th-September 1st, 2012

Microscopy-based quantitative analysis of nonhost resistance in Brachypodium distachyon to cereal rusts. Monogram Conference. Aberystwyth, United Kingdom. March 26th-28th, 2012

Epistatic control of powdery mildew-induced necrosis among progeny of the Steptoe x Morex doubled-haploid mapping population in barley. John Innes Centre (JIC), Norwich, United Kingdom. March 17, 2009

Natural genetic variation in barley identifies master regulatory loci of defense-related genes. Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK), Gatersleben, Germany. March 19, 2008

Gene-for-gene-mediated transcriptome reprogramming in barley-powdery mildew interactions. Plant and Animal Genome Conference, San Diego, California, USA. January 12, 2008

Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Laboratory: An interaction model for cross-departmental bioinformatics knowledge integration ( New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA. November 14, 2007

PLEXdb: Plant and pathogen expression database and tools for comparative and functional genomics analysis. COST Action 858, INRA, Bordeaux, France. November 20, 2006

Markermaker: an iterative algorithm for optimization of fit between expression level polymorphisms and genetic marker datasets. Sixth Annual Joint Bioinformatics Symposium, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa, USA. July 14, 2006

Peer Review

Manuscripts reviewed for BMC Genomics, BMC Plant Biology, Frontiers in Plant Science, Genome Biology, Journal of Experimental Botany, Molecular Genetics and Genomics, Molecular Plant Pathology, Nature Communications, Nature Genetics, Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology, Phytopathology, Plant Cell Reports, Plant Health Progress, Plant Management Network, PLoS Genetics, PLoS ONE, Rice, Science, and Theoretical and Applied Genetics.

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Membership in Professional Societies

American Association for the Advancement of Science
American Society of Plant Biologists
British Society of Plant Pathology
Genetics Society of America
International Society of Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions

Last updated: 2017 April 3