Staff Profile

Paula Tennant, Plant Pathologist

Prof. Paula Tennant

BSc UWI(Mona), PhD Cornell
Email: paula.tennant@uwimona.edu.jm
Tel: (+1 876) 927-1202, 927-2753, 935-8291
Fax: (+1 876) 977-1075
Office: Block E, Rm 27

Prof. Paula Tennant is a Research Plant Pathologist working with virus diseases of fruit crops. Her work involves the identification of viruses of vegetables and fruit crops with an emphasis toward developing management strategies using biotechnology as well as natural sources of tolerance or resistance from diverse germplasm, including domestic and wild species. Close collaboration with Cornell University (New York, USA), The Biotechnology Centre, University of the West Indies, and the Jamaica Agricultural Development Foundation (JADF) has led to the establishment of the appropriate regulatory structures to oversee the use and importation of agricultural biotechnology products in Jamaica and the development of virus resistant transgenic papaya.

Prof. Tennant joined the staff in the Department of Life Sciences in 2001 and continues to work with papaya as well as initiated work on the characterization of viruses affecting citrus, cucurbits and root crops. She was promoted to the rank of Professor in May 2012 and appointed Head of the Department in 2013.

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Courses

  • BIOL1018 – Molecular Biology & Genetics
  • BIOL3401 – Principles of Plant Biotechnology
  • BIOL3404 – Virology
  • BIOL6026 - Plant Diseases: Biology, Ecology and Management

Research Areas

  • Environmental change in the tropics
  • Coral reef and mangrove sediment records of environmental change

Memberships

  • Caribbean Academy of Sciences
  • Jamaica Society of Scientists and Technologists
  • American Phytopathological Society

Selected Publications

Refereed Journal Articles

  • Bennett S, Tennant P, Mc Laughlin W (2010) First report of Hop stunt viroid infecting citrus orchards in Jamaica. Plant Pathology 59: 393
  • Fisher L, Tennant P, Mc Laughlin W (2010) Detection and characterization of Citrus tristeza virus stem pitting isolates in Jamaica. European Journal of Plant Pathology 127: 1-6.
  • Powell M, Wheatley A, Omoruyi F, Asemota H, Williams NP, Tennant PF (2010) Comparative effects of dietary administered transgenic and conventional papaya on selected intestinal parameters in rat models. Transgenic Research 19: 511-518.
  • Tennant, P.F., Robinson, R., Fisher, L., Bennett, S., Hutton, D., Coates-Beckford, P.L., McLauglin, W. (2009). Diseases and pests of citrus (Citrus spp.). Tennant, P.F., Benkeblia, N, (Eds) Citrus III. Tree and Forestry Science and Biotechnology, 3 (Special Issue 2): 81-107
  • Chin, M., Rhodes, L., Tennant, P (2008) Occurrence of Papaya ringspot virus in papaya orchards of St. Kitts. Plant Pathology 57: 767 (New Disease Reports, Vol 16.)
  • Powell, M., Wheatley, A., Omoruyi, F., Asemota, H., Williams, N.P., Tennant, P.F. (2008) Effects of subchronic exposure to transgenic papayas (Carica papaya L.) on liver and kidney enzymes and lipid parameters in rats. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 88: 2638-2647
  • Roberts, M., Minott, D.A., Tennant, P.F., and Jackson, J.C. (2008) Assessment of compositional changes during ripening of transgenic papaya modified for protection against Papaya ringspot virus. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 88: 1911-1920
  • Boyd. F., Tennant, P.F., Persad, G, Robinson, D., McLaren, I (2008) Student perceptions and outcomes of a WAC intervention exercise in an introductory biology course. Caribbean Journal of Education 30: 217-247

Book Chapters

  • Benkebelia, N., Tennant, P., Jawandha, S.K. and Gill, P.S. (2011) Pre-harvest factors influencing fruit quality after harvest. In: Yahia EM and Brecht JK (eds.). Postharvest Biology and Technology of Tropical and Sub-Tropical Fruits. Woodhead Publishing, Cambridge. 1: 112-141
  • Tennant P,  Fermin, G, Fisher L, Fuchs, M (2011). Virus diseases of fruit crops. In: UNESCO-EOLSS Joint Committee (eds) Agricultural Sciences. Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems (EOLSS) Publishers, Oxford, UK, [Read Online]
  • Oliver J.E., Tennant P.F. and Fuchs M. 2011. "Virus-resistant transgenic horticultural crops: Safety issues and lessons from risk assessment studies." In: Transgenic horticultural crops: Challenges and opportunities - Essays by experts, Mou B and Scorza R (Eds). CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group, Boca Raton, FL. pp 264-288.
  • Tennant, P and Benkeblia, N. (Guest Editors) (2009). Special Issue: Potato II. Fruit, Vegetable and Cereal Science and Biotechnology, GSB Publisher (UK, 3(1): 1-39.
  • Tennant, P and Benkeblia, N. (Guest Editors) (2009). Special Issue: Citrus II. Tree and forestry Science and Biotechnology, GSB Publisher, (UK), 3(1): 1-169.
  • Tennant, P.F., and Benkeblia, N. (Eds) (2009). Special Issue Citrus III. Tree and Forestry Science and Biotechnology, vol 3 (Special Issue 2), 142 pp
  • Benkeblia, N., and Tennant, P. (Guest Editors) (2008). Special Issue: Potato I. Fruit, Vegetable and Cereal Science and Biotechnology, GSB Publisher, Isleworth (UK), 2(1): 1-55.
  • Benkeblia, N., and Tennant, P. (Guest Editors) (2008). Special Issue: Citrus I. Tree and forestry Science and Biotechnology, GSB Publisher, Isleworth (UK), 2(1): 1-44.

Refereed Articles

  • Olarte Castillo XA, Fermin G, Tabima J, Rojas Y, Tennant P, Fuchs M, Sierra R, Bernal AJ, Restrepo S (2011) Phylogeography and molecular epidemiology of Papaya ringspot virus. Virus Research 159: 132-140.
  • Fermin, G. and Tennant, P. 2011.  "Opportunities and constraints to biotechnological applications in the Caribbean: transgenic papayas in Jamaica and Venezuela." Plant Cell Reports 30: 681–687.
  • Fisher, L., Bennett, S., Tennant, P., McLaughlin, W. 2011. "Detection of Citrus tristeza virus and citrus viroid species in Jamaica." Acta Horticulturae 894: 117-122.

Non-Refereed Articles

  • Tennant P, Fisher L, McLaughlin W (2010) "Disease-resistant transgenic crops: priorities and strategies for the Caribbean." [Read online]

Conference Presentations

  • Olarte Castillo XA, Rojas Y, Tennant P, Fuchs M, Sierra R, Bernal AJ, Fermin G and S. Restrepo S (2010) Origin, evolution and molecular epidemiology of Papaya ringspot virus. Plant Viruses Exploiting Agricultural and Natural Ecosystems. 11th International Plant Virus Epidemiology Symposium and 3rd Workshop of the Plant Virus Ecology Network. Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, June 20-24, 2010.
  • Powell, M., Wheatley, A.O., Omoruyi F., Asemota, H. N., Williams, N.P., Tennant, P.F. "Safety assessment of transgenic crops modified for protection against plant viruses: The papaya case study. Food Safety and Security, the Future". Knutsford Court Hotel, Kingston, Jamaica, July 30-31, 2009.
  • Fisher, L.C., Tennant, P.F., McLaughlin, W.A. "Detection of Citrus tristeza virus (CTV) in citrus using Serological and Molecular Tools. Food security and agricultural development in the Americas". Mona Visitor’s Lodge and Conference Centre, University of the West Indies, July 28-30, 2009.
  • Fisher, L.C., Tennant, P.F., McLaughlin, W.A. "New occurrences of Citrus tristeza virus stem pitting strains in Jamaica". Caribbean Agriculture and Food in a Changing Global Context. University of the West Indies, March 3, 2009.

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