Hello there! We're hiring!
Join our lab and work with a team of creative and intelligent individuals who are dedicated to advancing the field of plant science. We are seeking candidates who are interested in pursuing exciting research projects and are passionate about exploring the intricacies of plant defense and plant-biotic interactions.
If this sounds like you, we'd love to hear from you!
Dr. Ben Mansfeld
Ben was born in Tel Aviv Israel and grew up in Tel Aviv as well as Vienna, Austria. After returning to Israel, Ben went to the Faculty of Agriculture at Hebrew University in Jerusalem where he received his B.Sc in Plant Science in Agriculture. After completing his undergraduate studies, Ben moved to the US to pursue his PhD at Michigan State University. In 2019 he received his PhD in Plant Breeding, Genetics and Biotechnology working on age-related resistance in cucumber, with Dr. Rebecca Grumet. His Post-Doctoral experiences were with Dr. Becky Bart at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis. There, he continued to develop his interest in plant genomics, working on assembling the African cassava genome as well as helping to identify a crucial gene for cassava virus resistance. At the same time, as an NSF Postdoc Fellow, Ben started to develop his own research, focusing on defense optimization in plants.
Apart from research, Ben loves spending time with his family. He also enjoys cooking, listening to music, gardening, traveling, and running in Forest Park with his dog Penny.
Dr. Anuradha Dhingra
Postdoctoral Research Associate
I was born in India and raised in Mozambique, Africa, where I spent most of my early teenage years. For my higher education, I returned to India and earned my undergraduate degree in Biotechnology, Genetics, and Biochemistry from Bangalore University. I then pursued a master's degree with a specialization in Plant Biotechnology at TERI University in New Delhi. Following the completion of my master's degree, I moved to the United States to pursue a doctoral degree at Texas Tech University under the guidance of Dr. Chris Rock, focusing on plant molecular genetics. There, my research involved cloning the Wilty mutants of Maize and identifying miRNA involved in heat stress in peanuts. As a postdoctoral researcher in Dr. Gunvant Patil's lab at Texas Tech University, I worked on high-throughput cloning using CRISPR-based techniques and conducted genome-wide association studies in soybeans. Upon joining the Mansfeld lab as a postdoc, I now contribute to research in circadian defense and domestication using tomato as a model plant.
Outside of my professional life, you'll often find me traveling or exploring new cities. I also have a passion for watching movies, reading novels, and occasionally indulging in writing poetry when the mood strikes.
A dreamy kid, born and raised in the Midwest, I came to science later in life. After too many years spent in call center customer service, I went back to school for my associate degree in biotechnology from St. Louis Community College and am currently working on my bachelor’s degree in data science at UMSL. While working on my associate degree, I joined NewLeaf Symbiotics in the fermentation department and then moved to QA/QC. Now, I am excited to join Ben in setting up his new lab and discovering more about the secret lives of the plants we grow!
When not working or studying, I enjoy spending time with loved ones, cooking, tending to my houseplants and niche(-ish) comedy series.