Dr John Becker


Department of Genetics

[email protected]


Plant-pathogen interactions and antimalarial drug discovery 

John Becker completed his postgraduate studies at Stellenbosch University’s Institute for Wine Biotechnology. He subsequently joined the CSIR’s Systems Biology platform; initially as post-doctoral research fellow and then as senior researcher.

He was appointed as Centre Manager of the African Centre for Gene Technologies (ACGT) in 2011. The ACGT is a collaborative initiative of science councils and universities in the Gauteng region.

He has published genomics-related papers in the fields of plant-pathogen interactions and antimalarial drug discovery.



IRT-related research

John is currently involved in projects in the Department of Genetics Eucalyptus and Pine Pathogen Interactions group (EPPI). The specific focus is on terpenoid defence against Chrysoporthe austroafricana in eucalypts and model plants. 


Key Publications

Becker, JVW, Mtwisha, L, Crampton, BG, Stoychev, S, van Brummelen, AC, Reeksting, S, Louw, AI, Birkholtz, LM, Mancama, DT (2010) Plasmodium falciparum spermidine synthase inhibition results in unique perturbation-specific effects observed on transcript, protein and metabolite levels. BMC Genomics 11: 235

Becker, JVW, van der Merwe, MM, van Brummelen, AC, Pillay, P, Crampton, BG, Mmutlane, EM, Parkinson, C, van Heerden, FR, Crouch, NR, Smith, PJ, Mancama, DT, Maharaj, VJ (2011) In vitro anti-plasmodial activity of Dicoma anomala subsp gerrardii (Asteraceae): identification of its main active constituent, structure-activity relationship studies and gene expression profiling. Malaria J. 10: 295

Alexandersson, E, Becker, JVW, Jacobson, D, Nguema-Ona, E, Steyn, C, Denby, KJ, Vivier, MA (2011) Constitutive expression of a grapevine polygalacturonase-inhibiting protein affects gene expression and cell wall properties in uninfected tobacco. BMC Res Notes 4: 493


Published by Grant Christie

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