Ricardo Oliva

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oliva contactRicardo and his research team contribute to host plant resistance against major diseases of rice. Ricardo is a plant pathologist with many years experience working on plant–pathogen interactions and population genetics.

Ricardo’s current activities focus on:

  • Rice microbiome
  • Pathogenomics of field populations and historical collections
  • Strategies to customize the deployment of resistance genes in rice agro-ecosystems
  • Exploring rice germplasm for gene identification of novel gene pools


  • Plant-pathogen interactions
  • Population genetics
  • Plant Pathology


  • PhD in Plant Pathology, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich (2010)
  • MSc in Biochemistry, Francisco de Vitoria, Spain (2004)


  • Scientist II, Host Plant Resistance, IRRI, (2012- )
  • Scientist I, Host Plant Resistance, IRRI, (2012 – 2015)
  • Visiting Scientist, Prometeo Fellowship, SENESCYT, Ecuador (2011-2012)
  • Assistant Professor, Escuela Politecnica del Ejercito, Ecuador (2011 - 2012)
  • Research Associate, The Sainsbury Laboratory, UK (2008-2011)
  • Research Scientist, International Potato Center, (2004-2008)
  • Visiting Scientist, Instituto Nacional de Investigación Agraria, Spain (2003)
  • Research Assistant, International Potato Center, (1999-2002)


  1. Rice-infecting Pseudomonas genomes are highly accessorized and harbor multiple virulence mechanisms to cause sheath brown rot. Quibod I, Grande GL, Dossa SG, Borja N, Mauleon R, Vera Cruz C, Oliva R. PlosOne (accepted)
  2. A recent expansion of the RXLR effector gene Avrblb2 is maintained in global populations of Phytophthora infestans indicating different contributions to virulence. 2015. Oliva RF, Cano LM, Raffaele S, Win J, Bozkurt TO, Belhaj K, Oh SK, Thines M, Kamoun S. Mol. Plant Microbe Interact. 28: 901-12.
  3. High temperature enhances the resistance of cultivated African rice, Oryza glaberrima, to bacterial blight. 2015. Dossa GS, Oliva R, Maiss E, Vera Cruz C, Wydra K. Plant Disease doi: 10.1094/pdis-05-15-0536-re
  4. Decision tools for bacterial blight resistance gene deployment in rice-base agricultural ecosystems. 2015. Dossa GS, Sparks A, Vera Cruz C, Oliva R. Frontiers of Plant Science 6:305. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2015.00305
  5. Expression of High Weight Gluten subunits genes correlated with gluten content in common wheat varieties from Ecuador. 2012. Bravo A, Proano K, Oliva R. Cereal Research Communications (accepted).
  6. Evolutionary and functional dynamics of oomycete effector genes. 2012 van Damme M, Cano L, Oliva R, Schornack S, Segretin M, Kamoun S, and Raffaele S. In: Effectors in Plant-Microbe Interactions (Martin F and Kamoun S, ed.), Wiley-VCH
  7. Irish potato famine pathogen effector prevents focal secretion of plant immune protease at haustorial interface. 2011. Bozkurt T, Schornack S, Win J, Shindo T, Oliva R, Cano L, Jones AME, Huitema E, van der Hoorn R, and Kamoun S. PNAS doi: 10.1073/pnas.1112708109
  8. Understanding and exploiting late blight resistance in the age of effectors. Vleeshouwers V., Raffaele S., Vossen JH, Champouret N, Oliva R, Segretin ME, Rietman H, Cano LM, Lokossou A, Kessel G, Pel MA, Kamoun S. 2011. Annu Rev Phytopatholy 49:507-31
  9. Recent developments in effectors biology of filamentous plant pathogens. 2010. Oliva R, Win J, Raffaele S., Boutemy L., Chaparro-Garcia A, Segretin M, Schornack S, Bozkurt T, , van Damme M, Thines M, and Kamoun S. Cellular Microbiology 12:705-715
  10. In planta expression screens of Phytophthorainfestans RXLR effectors reveal diverse phenotypes, including activation of the Solanum bulbocastanum disease resistance protein Rpi-blb2. 2009. Oh SK, Young C, Lee M, Oliva R, Bozkurt T, Cano LM, Win J, Bos J, Liu H, van Damme M, Morgan W, Choi D, van der Vossen EAG, Vleeshouwers V, and Kamoun S. Plant Cell: 21 2928-2947
  11. Ten things to know about oomycete effectors. 2009. Schornack S, Huitema E, Cano L, Bozkurt T, Oliva R, van Damme M, Schwizer S, Raffaele S, Chaparro-Garcia A, Farrer R, Segretin ME, Bos J, Haas B, Zody MC, Nusbaum C, Win J, Thines M, and Kamoun S. Molecular Plant Pathology10: 795-803
  12. Phytophthora andina sp. novo, a newly identified heterothallic pathogen of solanaceous hosts in the Andean highlands. 2010. Oliva R, Kroon L Flier W, Ristaino J and Forbes G. Plant Pathology 59:613-625
  13. Phylogenetic relationships of a new species, Phytophthora andina, from the highlands of Ecuador that is closely related to the Irish Potato famine pathogen Phytophthora infestans. 2006. Gomez-Alpizar L., Chia-Hui H., Oliva R., Forbes GA and Ristaino J.B. Mycologia 100: 590-602.
  14. Potential of sexual reproduction among host-adapted populations of Phytophthora infestans sensu lato in Ecuador. 2002. Oliva R., Adler N, Forbes G. Plant Pathology 51:710-719.
  15. Is Phytophthorainfestans a good taxonomist - host recognition and co-evolution in the Phytophthora/Solanum interaction? 2007.Oliva R., Chacón M.G., Cooke D.E.L., Lees A.K. and Forbes G.A. Acta Horticulturae 745: 465-471

oliva contact


Dr. Ricardo Oliva
Scientist, Host plant resistance

International Rice Research Institute
Los Baños, Laguna

+63 2 580 5600
ext 2743