Dinesh-Kumar received his PhD in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology from Iowa State University and did his postdoc at Plant Gene Expression Center and University of California, Berkeley. As a post-doc, he was involved in cloning and characterization of the first Toll-Interleukin-1 receptor (TIR) homology domain containing nucleotide-binding leucine-rich repeat (NLR) class immune receptor from plants.
Dinesh-Kumar’s laboratory at UC Davis is pursuing basic research activities to understand the molecular mechanisms by which plant immune receptors recognize pathogens and initiate innate immune signaling. In addition, his group is interested in inter-organellar communications during innate immunity and understanding the role of autophagy in innate immunity and programmed cell death (PCD). His group developed virus-induced gene silencing system for gene function studies in plants that has been widely used by the scientific community in over 25 plant species.