Boris Vinatzer





Boris A. Vinatzer is a Professor at Virginia Tech's School of Plant and Environmental Sciences. His research spans from molecular plant-microbe interactions to molecular evolution and taxonomy of plant pathogenic bacteria. He takes advantage of the revolution in DNA sequencing technology to develop bioinformatics tools for precise and fast detection, classification, and identification of plant pathogens and biocontrol agents. A second area of research focuses on environmental microbes that may play a role in the formation of precipitation. Dr. Vinatzer teaches an interdisciplinary undergraduate course in Microbial Forensics and Biosecurity in which he covers concepts of biosecurity through examples of bioterrorism and natural disease epidemics of humans, animals, and plants. Dr. Vinatzer has published over 75 peer-reviewed research articles and book-chapters.

Preferred Pronouns


Personal Academic Website

Research/Topics of Interest

New methods development
Outbreak science
Phylogenetic models
Science communication

Pathogens/Diseases of Main Interest/Expertise

Vector-borne diseases
Plant diseases

Countries of Work/Collaboration

United States



Yang S, Johnson MA, Hansen MA, Bush E, Li S, Vinatzer BA. (2022). Metagenomic sequencing for detection and identification of the boxwood blight pathogen Calonectria pseudonaviculata. Scientific reports, 12(1)

Pritchard L, Brown CT, Harrington B, Heath LS, Pierce-Ward NT, Vinatzer BA. (2022). Could a Focus on the "Why" of Taxonomy Help Taxonomy Better Respond to the Needs of Science and Society?. Frontiers in microbiology, (13)

Yang S, Rojas M, Coleman JJ, Vinatzer BA. (2022). by Combining Phenotypic Characterization with Comparative Genomics and Transcriptomics. Journal of fungi (Basel, Switzerland), 8(9)

Johnson MA, Liu H, Bush E, Sharma P, Yang S, Mazloom R, Heath LS, Nita M, Li S, Vinatzer BA. (2022). . Microbial genomics, 8(5)

Sharma P, Johnson MA, Mazloom R, Allen C, Heath LS, Lowe-Power TM, Vinatzer BA. (2022). species complex (RSSC) based on comparative evolutionary genomics and reverse ecology. Microbial genomics, 8(3)

Tian L, Mazloom R, Heath LS, Vinatzer BA. (2021). LINflow: a computational pipeline that combines an alignment-free with an alignment-based method to accelerate generation of similarity matrices for prokaryotic genomes. PeerJ, (9)

Yang S, Vinatzer BA. (2021). Draft Genome Sequence of Mortierella alpina Strain LL118, Isolated from an Aspen (Populus tremuloides) Leaf Litter Sample. Microbiology resource announcements, 10(47)

Failor KC, Liu H, Llontop MEM, LeBlanc S, Eckshtain-Levi N, Sharma P, Reed A, Yang S, Tian L, Lefevre C, Menguy N, Du L, Monteil CL, Vinatzer BA. (2021). Ice nucleation in a Gram-positive bacterium isolated from precipitation depends on a polyketide synthase and non-ribosomal peptide synthetase. The ISME journal

Failor KC, Liu H, Llontop MEM, LeBlanc S, Eckshtain-Levi N, Sharma P, Reed A, Yang S, Tian L, Lefevre CT, Menguy N, Du L, Monteil CL, Vinatzer BA. (2021). Correction to: Ice nucleation in a Gram-positive bacterium isolated from precipitation depends on a polyketide synthase and non-ribosomal peptide synthetase. The ISME journal

Vinatzer BA. (2021). The Power of a Statewide Survey When Phenotypic Testing Is Combined with Genomics-Enabled Molecular Characterization and Network Analyses. Phytopathology

Stam R, Gladieux P, Vinatzer BA, Goss EM, Potnis N, Candresse T, Brewer MT. (2021). Population Genomic- and Phylogenomic-Enabled Advances to Increase Insight Into Pathogen Biology and Epidemiology. Phytopathology, 111(1)

Mechan Llontop ME, Hurley K, Tian L, Bernal Galeano VA, Wildschutte HK, Marine SC, Yoder KS, Vinatzer BA. (2020). Exploring Rain as Source of Biological Control Agents for Fire Blight on Apple. Frontiers in microbiology, (11)

Roman-Reyna V, Truchon A, Sharma P, Hand FP, Mazloom R, Vinatzer BA, Jacobs JM, Allen C. (2020). Phylotype II Sequevar 1 (Race 3 Biovar 2) Strain UW848 From the 2020 U.S. Geranium Introduction. Plant disease

Tian L, Huang C, Mazloom R, Heath LS, Vinatzer BA. (2020). LINbase: a web server for genome-based identification of prokaryotes as members of crowdsourced taxa. Nucleic acids research, 48(W1)

Mechan Llontop ME, Sharma P, Aguilera Flores M, Yang S, Pollok J, Tian L, Huang C, Rideout S, Heath LS, Li S, Vinatzer BA. (2020). Strain-Level Identification of Bacterial Tomato Pathogens Directly from Metagenomic Sequences. Phytopathology, 110(4)

Eckshtain-Levi N, Weisberg AJ, Vinatzer BA. (2018). The population genetic test Tajima's D identifies genes encoding pathogen-associated molecular patterns and other virulence-related genes in Ralstonia solanacearum. Molecular plant pathology, 19(9)

Curland RD, Gao L, Bull CT, Vinatzer BA, Dill-Macky R, Van Eck L, Ishimaru CA. (2018). Genetic Diversity and Virulence of Wheat and Barley Strains of Xanthomonas translucens from the Upper Midwestern United States. Phytopathology, 108(4)

Clarke CR, Vinatzer BA. Characterizing the Immune-Eliciting Activity of Putative Microbe-Associated Molecular Patterns in Tomato. Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.), (1578)

Vinatzer BA, Tian L, Heath LS. (2017). A proposal for a portal to make earth's microbial diversity easily accessible and searchable. Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, 110(10)

Pietsch RB, Vinatzer BA, Schmale DG 3rd.. (2017). in a Freshwater Lake in Virginia, USA. Frontiers in microbiology, (8)

Guinard J, Vinatzer BA, Poussier S, Lefeuvre P, Wicker E. (2016). Draft Genome Sequences of Nine Strains of Ralstonia solanacearum Differing in Virulence to Eggplant (Solanum melongena). Genome announcements, 4(1)

Clarke CR, Hayes BW, Runde BJ, Markel E, Swingle BM, Vinatzer BA. (2016). reveals novel chemotaxis pathways associated with motility and plant pathogenicity. PeerJ, (4)

Vinatzer BA, Weisberg AJ, Monteil CL, Elmarakeby HA, Sheppard SK, Heath LS. (2017). A Proposal for a Genome Similarity-Based Taxonomy for Plant-Pathogenic Bacteria that Is Sufficiently Precise to Reflect Phylogeny, Host Range, and Outbreak Affiliation Applied to Pseudomonas syringae sensu lato as a Proof of Concept. Phytopathology, 107(1)

Hind SR, Strickler SR, Boyle PC, Dunham DM, Bao Z, O'Doherty IM, Baccile JA, Hoki JS, Viox EG, Clarke CR, Vinatzer BA, Schroeder FC, Martin GB. (2016). Tomato receptor FLAGELLIN-SENSING 3 binds flgII-28 and activates the plant immune system. Nature plants, (2)

Monteil CL, Yahara K, Studholme DJ, Mageiros L, Méric G, Swingle B, Morris CE, Vinatzer BA, Sheppard SK. (2016). pathogens. Microbial genomics, 2(10)

Clarke CR, Studholme DJ, Hayes B, Runde B, Weisberg A, Cai R, Wroblewski T, Daunay MC, Wicker E, Castillo JA, Vinatzer BA. (2015). Genome-Enabled Phylogeographic Investigation of the Quarantine Pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum Race 3 Biovar 2 and Screening for Sources of Resistance Against Its Core Effectors. Phytopathology, 105(5)

Vinatzer BA, Monteil CL, Clarke CR. (2014). Harnessing population genomics to understand how bacterial pathogens emerge, adapt to crop hosts, and disseminate. Annual review of phytopathology, (52)

Marakeby H, Badr E, Torkey H, Song Y, Leman S, Monteil CL, Heath LS, Vinatzer BA. (2014). A system to automatically classify and name any individual genome-sequenced organism independently of current biological classification and nomenclature. PloS one, 9(2)

Vinatzer BA. (2012). "Listening in" on how a bacterium takes over the plant vascular system. mBio, 3(5)

Vinatzer BA, Yan S. (2008). Mining the genomes of plant pathogenic bacteria: how not to drown in gigabases of sequence. Molecular plant pathology, 9(1)

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