Mark Guiltinan

J. Franklin Styer Professor of Horticultural Botany; Professor of Plant Molecular Biology; Director, Endowed Program in the Molecular Biology of Cocoa

Mark Guiltinan

Research Summary

Plant functional genomics, metabolomics and biotechnology. Identification of key genes for disease resistance and important traits in the tree crop Theoboma cacao, the Chocolate tree.

Huck Graduate Students

Huck Affiliations


Publication Tags

Genes Cacao Theobroma Cacao Genome Phytophthora Gene Expression Arabidopsis Genotype Transcription Factors Chocolate Tissues Leaves Flavonoids Polymers Glucocorticoid Receptors Somatic Embryogenesis Seeds Proteins Flowering Disease Resistance Dexamethasone Flowers Somatic Embryos Demography Light

Most Recent Papers

Transcriptomic analyses of cacao flavonoids produced in photobioreactors

Adriana M. Gallego, Luisa F. Rojas, Wilmar G. Valencia, Lucía Atehortúa, Aura I. Urrea, Andrew S. Fister, Mark J. Guiltinan, Siela Maximova, Natalia Pabón-Mora, 2021, BMC Genomics

Inter-species functional compatibility of the Theobroma cacao and Arabidopsis FT orthologs: 90 million years of functional conservation of meristem identity genes

S. F. Prewitt, A. Shalit-Kaneh, S. N. Maximova, M. J. Guiltinan, 2021, BMC Plant Biology

Genomic structural variants constrain and facilitate adaptation in natural populations of Theobroma cacao, the chocolate tree

Tuomas Hämälä, Eric K. Wafula, Mark J. Guiltinan, Paula E. Ralph, Claude W. dePamphilis, Peter Tiffin, 2021, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

Clovamide, a Hydroxycinnamic Acid Amide, Is a Resistance Factor Against Phytophthora spp. in Theobroma cacao

Benjamin J. Knollenberg, Guo Xing Li, Joshua D. Lambert, Siela N. Maximova, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2020, Frontiers in Plant Science

Widely distributed variation in tolerance to Phytophthora palmivora in four genetic groups of cacao

Andrew Fister, Mariela Leandro-Muñoz, Dapeng Zhang, James H. Marden, Peter Tiffin, Claude dePamphilis, Siela Maximova, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2020, Tree Genetics and Genomes

Gene Expression Modularity Reveals Footprints of Polygenic Adaptation in Theobroma cacao

Tuomas Hämälä, Mark J. Guiltinan, James H. Marden, Siela N. Maximova, Claude dePamphilis, Peter Tiffin, 2020, Molecular Biology and Evolution on p. 110-123

Metabolomic profile of cacao cell suspensions growing in blue light/dark conditions with potential in food biotechnology

Adriana M. Gallego, Luisa F. Rojas, Héctor A. Rodriguez, Conrado Mora, Lucía Atehortúa, Aura I. Urrea, Mark J. Guiltinan, Siela N. Maximova, Emmanuel Gaquerel, Martha Zuluaga, Natalia Pabón-Mora, 2019, Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture on p. 275-294

Resistant and susceptible cacao genotypes exhibit defense gene polymorphism and unique early responses to Phytophthora megakarya inoculation

Désiré N. Pokou, Andrew S. Fister, Noah Winters, Mathias Tahi, Coulibaly Klotioloma, Aswathy Sebastian, James H. Marden, Siela N. Maximova, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2019, Plant Molecular Biology on p. 499-516

Transcriptomic analyses of cacao cell suspensions in light and dark provide target genes for controlled flavonoid production

Adriana M. Gallego, Luisa F. Rojas, Oriana Parra, Héctor A. Rodriguez, Juan C. Mazo Rivas, Aura Inés Urrea, Lucía Atehortúa, Andrew S. Fister, Mark J. Guiltinan, Siela N. Maximova, Natalia Pabón-Mora, 2018, Scientific Reports

Glucocorticoid receptor-regulated TcLEC2 expression triggers somatic embryogenesis in Theobroma cacao leaf tissue

Andrew S. Fister, Lena Landherr, Melanie Perryman, Yufan Zhang, Mark J. Guiltinan, Siela N. Maximova, 2018, PLoS One

Most-Cited Papers

Proanthocyanidin synthesis in Theobroma cacao: Genes encoding anthocyanidin synthase, anthocyanidin reductase, and leucoanthocyanidin reductase

Yi Liu, Zi Shi, Siela Maximova, Mark J. Payne, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2013, BMC Plant Biology

Transient expression of CRISPR/Cas9 machinery targeting TcNPR3 enhances defense response in theobroma cacao

Andrew S. Fister, Lena Landherr, Siela N. Maximova, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2018, Frontiers in Plant Science

Pervasive effects of a dominant foliar endophytic fungus on host genetic and phenotypic expression in a tropical tree

Luis C. Mejía, Edward A. Herre, Jed P. Sparks, Klaus Winter, Milton N. García, Sunshine A. Van Bael, Joseph Stitt, Zi Shi, Yufan Zhang, Mark J. Guiltinan, Siela N. Maximova, 2014, Frontiers in Microbiology

Enhanced somatic embryogenesis in Theobroma cacao using the homologous BABY BOOM transcription factor

Sergio L. Florez, Rachel L. Erwin, Siela N. Maximova, Mark J. Guiltinan, Wayne R. Curtis, 2015, BMC Plant Biology

Genome and secretome analysis of the hemibiotrophic fungal pathogen, Moniliophthora roreri, which causes frosty pod rot disease of cacao: Mechanisms of the biotrophic and necrotrophic phases

Lyndel W. Meinhardt, Gustavo Gilson L. Costa, Daniela P.T. Thomazella, Paulo José P.L. Teixeira, Marcelo F. Carazzolle, Stephan C. Schuster, John E. Carlson, Mark J. Guiltinan, Piotr Mieczkowski, Andrew Farmer, Thiruvarangan Ramaraj, Jayne Crozier, Robert E. Davis, Jonathan Shao, Rachel L. Melnick, Gonçalo A.G. Pereira, Bryan A. Bailey, 2014, BMC Genomics

Phytophthora megakarya and Phytophthora palmivora, Closely Related Causal Agents of Cacao Black Pod Rot, Underwent Increases in Genome Sizes and Gene Numbers by DifferentMechanisms

Shahin S. Ali, Jonathan Shao, David J. Lary, Brent A. Kronmiller, Danyu Shen, Mary D. Strem, Ishmael Amoako-Attah, Andrew Yaw Akrofi, B. A.Didier Begoude, G. Martijn ten Hoopen, Klotioloma Coulibaly, Boubacar Ismaël Kebe, Rachel L. Melnick, Mark J. Guiltinan, Brett M. Tyler, Lyndel W. Meinhardt, Bryan A. Bailey, 2017, Genome Biology and Evolution

Biodegradable polyphosphazenes containing antibiotics

Zhicheng Tian, Yufan Zhang, Xiao Liu, Chen Chen, Mark J. Guiltinan, Harry R. Allcock, 2013, Polymer Chemistry on p. 1826-1835

Characterization of a stearoyl-acyl carrier protein desaturase gene family from chocolate tree, theobroma cacao L

Yufan Zhang, Siela N. Maximova, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2015, Frontiers in Plant Science on p. 1-12

The salicylic acid receptor NPR3 is a negative regulator of the transcriptional defense response during early flower development in Arabidopsis

Zi Shi, Siela Maximova, Yi Liu, Joseph Verica, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2013, Molecular Plant on p. 802-816

The Theobroma cacao B3 domain transcription factor TcLEC2 plays a duel role in control of embryo development and maturation

Yufan Zhang, Adam Clemens, Siela N. Maximova, Mark J. Guiltinan, 2014, BMC Plant Biology on p. 106

News Articles Featuring Mark Guiltinan

Study of structural variants in cacao genomes yields clues about plant diversity

An exhaustive and painstaking comparison of the genomes of multiple strains of the cacao tree by a team of researchers has provided insights into the role genomic structural variants play in the regulation of gene expression and chromosome evolution, giving rise to the differences within populations of the plant.

Discovery of chemical clue may lead to solving cacao's black pod rot mystery

The finding of relatively high levels of the antimicrobial compound clovamide in the leaves of a disease-resistant strain of cacao has significant implications for breeding trees that can tolerate black pod rot, according to Penn State researchers who conducted a novel study.

New way to identify disease-resistant genes in chocolate-producing trees

Chocolate-producing cacao trees that are resistant to a major pathogen were identified by an international team of plant geneticists. The NSF-funded finding points the way for plant breeders to develop trees that are tolerant of the disease.

Novel way to ID disease-resistance genes in chocolate-producing trees found

Chocolate-producing cacao trees that are resistant to a major pathogen were identified by an international team of plant geneticists. The findings point the way for plant breeders to develop trees that are tolerant of the disease.

These Kids Have Come 500 Miles To Do Science And Make A Difference

The road between Arauquita, relatively near Colombia’s border with Venezuela, and the nation’s capital in Bogota stretches over 800 kilometers (500 miles), but for one week in October, a special group bridged that gap in more ways than one.

Gene editing could save Ghana’s cocoa from extinction, scientists say

A new study warns that climate change could drive Ghana’s cocoa (cacao) industry to extinction — a fate that scientists say could be reversed through gene editing.

Guiltinan, Maximova receive the 2019 Kopp International Achievement Award

Mark Guiltinan, professor of plant molecular biology, and Siela Maximova, research professor of plant biotechnology, both in the College of Agricultural Sciences, are the recipients of Penn State's 2019 W. LaMarr Kopp International Achievement Award.

Pink LEDs And Cacao Plants: Touring A Plant Science Greenhouse

These luminescent laboratories aren’t something out of a science fiction novel — they’re glowing examples of plant science research being conducted in the heart of campus.