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Contact        Research Interests 
John Peters chemistry and biochemistry. MSU photo by Kelly Gorham. John W. Peters

Director, Professor
(509) 335-3412
Plant Sciences Building 101E Pullman

  • Functional and structural examinations of enzymatic reduction processes, including nitrogenase, hydrogenase, and acetone carboxylase;
  • structural and mechanistic features of electron bifurcation;
  • influence of soil microbial communities on nitrogen fixation affecting crop growth
Laura Bartley

Associate Professor
(509) 335-7211
Plant Sciences Building 273 Pullman

  • Synthesis and Regulation of Grass Cell Walls
  • Genetics & Genomics of Switchgrass and Other Grasses for Biofuels and Carbon Storage
  • Cell Wall Remodeling During Lateral Root Formation
Philip D. Bates

Associate Professor
(509) 335-0553
Plant Sciences Building 243 Pullman


  • Membrane and storage lipid biochemistry and metabolism;
  • lipid metabolic flux, radioisotopic tracers;
  • engineering plant oils for increased nutrition or chemical feedstocks and biofuels
John Browse

Charlotte Y. Martin Distinguished Professor & Regents Professor
(509) 335-2293
Plant Sciences Building 241 Pullman

  • Lipid and membrane biochemistry;
  • pathways and regulation of lipid synthesis and membrane formation in higher plants;
  • jasmonate hormone;
  • chilling and freezing tolerance in plants

John R. Cort

WSU-PNNL Joint Appointment
Research Associate Professor
(509) 371-6334

  • Biomolecular NMR spectroscopy and mass spectrometry;
  • biopolymer structure, dynamics, and function;
  • structural Bioinformatics;
  • metabolomics
David R. Gang David R. Gang

Professor & Director of the Tissue Imaging and Proteomics Laboratory
(509) 335-0550
Plant Sciences Building 111B Pullman

  • Evolution of metabolism;
  • medicinal plants, such as ginger, turmeric, Huperziaceae and Lamiaceae;
  • development of rhizomes;
  • application of omics tools (metabolomics, proteomics, transcriptomics) to investigate the structure, regulation and control of metabolism in individual cell types such as trichomes and specialized organs such as plant rhizomes;
  • application of imaging mass spectrometry in agricultural and biomedical research
Paul S. Hwang

Assistant Research Professor
(509) 335-1090
Plant Sciences Building 353 Pullman

  • Plant genome editing;
  • metabolic engineering of starch for enhanced plant productivity and yields;
  • subcellular mRNA localization in higher plants
Michael L. Kahn

(509) 335-8327
Plant Sciences Building 343 Pullman

  • Interaction between plant and bacterial metabolism to support symbiotic nitrogen fixation in legumes;
  • plant and bacterial differentiation during root nodule formation;
  • signaling and resistance mechanisms operating during the initiation of root nodule formation;
  • advanced methods in bacterial genetics
Helmut Kirchhoff

Professor & Phenomics Center Coordinator
(509) 335-3304
Plant Sciences Building 283 Pullman

  • Architecture of photosynthetic membranes;
  • structure-function relationships on the whole membrane, mesoscopic and molecular levels;
  • dynamics of the photosynthetic apparatus in response to environmental changes;
  • protein repair and regulation of electron transport and light harvesting
 Bernd Markus (MarkLange

Professor & Co-Director of the M.J. Murdock Metabolomics Laboratory Service Center
(509) 335-3794
Plant Sciences Building 373 Pullman

  • Biosynthesis of natural products in medicinal and aromatic plants;
  • enzyme structure-function relationships in terpenoid biosynthesis;
  • development of tools and databases for plant metabolomics
Norman G. Lewis Norman G. Lewis

Arthur M. and Kate Eisig-Tode Distinguished Professor & Regents Professor
(509) 335-2682
Clark 467, Pullman

  • Functional characterization of dirigent proteins, and determination of their biochemical diversity in planta;
  • biochemistry of natural and medicinal products in plants;
  • biochemistry of vascular plant lignified cell walls;
  • biochemistry of formation of unique plant constituents in individual cell types;
  • effect of gravity on metabolic pathways in plants;
  • integrated omics and phenylpropanoid biochemical pathway evolution
Mary S. Lipton

WSU-PNNL Joint Appointment
Research Professor
(509) 371-6859
PNNL, MSIN:  K8-98

  • Proteomics;
  • microbially mediated bioenergy production, bioremediation, and carbon sequestration

Florence Mus

Assistant Research Professor
(509) 335-1093
Clark 427A, Pullman


  • Genetic determinants of nitrogen fixation: nitrogen fixation specific gene regulation, ammonium assimilation, oxygen protection mechanisms, electron transfer and redox homeostasis;
  • enzymatic CO2 fixation/carboxylation mechanisms: functional and structural examinations of acetone carboxylase enzymes;
  • enzymology of the biosynthesis of CoM in bacteria
Thomas W. Okita

Regents Professor
(509) 335-3391
Plant Sciences Building 361 Pullman

  • Biochemistry of starch synthesis and protein localization;
  • metabolic genetic engineering of plants for increased productivity;
  • mRNA localization and the role of the cytoskeleton and endoplasmic reticulum

Simone Raugei

WSU-PNNL Joint Appointment
Research Professor
(509) 372-6902
PNNL, MSIN:  K1-83

  • Energy transduction in enzymes;
  • Biophysics;
  • Catalysis;
  • Physical Chemistry
Sanja Roje

Associate Professor
(509) 335-3008
Plant Sciences Building 381 Pullman

  • Folate metabolism and its relationship to photosynthesis and photorespiration;
  • flavin biosynthesis and pathway regulation, role of flavins in symbiotic interactions
Andrei P. Smertenko

Associate Professor
(509) 335-5795
Plant Sciences Building 281 Pullman

  • Development of novel technologies for phenotyping drought tolerance in crops;
  • genetics of cambium proliferation and secondary growth;
  • molecular mechanisms of cytokinesis;
  • regulation of microtubule dynamics
Narayanan Srividya

Assistant Research Professor
(509) 335-3863
Plant Sciences Building 111A Pullman

  • Structure-function analysis of terpene synthases
  • Biochemistry of terpenoid functionalization enzymes
  • Determinants of specificity in acyl activating enzymes