Washington Luís da Silva
Department of Plant Pathology and Ecology
Jenkins-Waggoner Laboratory, Office 105
The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station
123 Huntington Street
New Haven, CT 06511
Voice: (203) 974-8546
Fax: (203) 974-8502
Dr. da Silva is a virologist with expertise in diagnoses, bioinformatics, nanotechnology, and molecular biology. He uses state of the art technologies (e.g., high throughput sequencing) to study the biology and ecology of viruses infecting important crops.
Cornell University Ph.D. 2018 Virology
Louisiana State University M.Sc. 2013 Mycology and Bacteriology
Universidade Federal de Viçosa (Brazil) B.Sc. 2010 Agronomy Engineering
Associate Agricultural Scientist: 2022-present
Assistant Agricultural Scientist II: 2018-2022
Dr. da Silva worked on potato virus Y (PVY), the major virus pathogen of potatoes (Solanum tuberosum L.). He investigated the changes in the genetic diversity structure of PVY populations introduced during vertical and horizontal transmission of the virus. His other research focus was to identify molecular markers in potato genome that were linked to genes correlated with the expression of potato tuber necrotic ringspot disease (PTNRD), a tuber deformity associated with infections by necrotic strains of PVY.
The top two priorities of his research program are to develop and improve molecular diagnostics for plant viruses and to investigate plant-virus-vector interactions with the ultimate goal of translating findings into virus disease management. He is currently investigating the incidence, prevalence, and genetic diversity of grapevine viruses in the state of Connecticut. Dr. da Silva is also investigating the potential of using nanoparticles as carriers of virus-derived dsRNA to control virus infections via RNA interference (RNAi).
Outreach activities in the da Silva Lab are designed to reach all segments (i.e., growers, lawmakers, extension agents, and consumers) needed to effectively implement a virus disease management plan in Connecticut. The goal is to develop a long-term disease management plan that will focus on three major points: 1) create awareness among growers of the significant impact of viruses on their production, 2) mitigate crop damages based on preventing the introduction and spread of viruses and vectors, and 3) use plant disease integrated management strategies that are economically viable and sustainable within the constraints of Connecticut agricultural systems.
Selected publications (for reprints, please contact Washington.daSilva@ct.gov):
Shidore, T., Zuverza-Mena, N., White, J. C., and da Silva, W. (2021). Nano-Enabled Delivery of RNA Molecules for Prolonged Antiviral Protection in Crop Plants: A Review. ACS Applied Nano Materials. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsanm.1c03512
Farooq, T., Adeel, M., He, Z., Umar, M., Shakoor, N., da Silva, W., Elmer, W., White, J. C., and Rui, Y. (2021). Nanotechnology and Plant Viruses: An Emerging Disease Management Approach for Resistant Pathogens. ACS Nano. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsnano.0c10910
Preising, S., Borges, D. F., Ambrósio, M. M. Q., and da Silva, W. (2021). A Fig Deal: A Global Look on Fig Mosaic Disease and its Putative Associates. Plant Disease. https://doi.org/10.1094/PDIS-06-20-1352-FE
Shidore, T., Zuverza-Mena, N., and da Silva, W. (2020). Small RNA profiling analysis of two recombinant strains of potato virus Y from infected tobacco plants. Virus Research. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.virusres.2020.198125
da Silva, W., Kutnjak, D., Xu, Y., Xu, Y., Giovannoni, J., Elena, S. F. and Gray, S. (2020). Transmission modes affect the population structure of potato virus Y in potato. PLOS Pathogens. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1008608
Borges, D. F., Preising, S., Ambrósio, M. M. Q., and da Silva, W. (2020). Detection of multiple grapevine viruses in New England vineyards. Crop Protection. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cropro.2020.105143
da Silva W. L., Yang, K. T., Pettis, G. S., Clark, C. A. 2019. Characterization of Clostridium Isolates That Cause Flooding-Associated Soft Rot of Sweetpotato. Plant Disease. https://doi.org/10.1094/PDIS-03-19-0548-RE
Xu, Y., da Silva, W., Qian, Y., and Gray, S. M. (2019). An aromatic amino acid and associated helix in the C-terminus of the potato leafroll virus minor capsid protein regulate systemic infection and symptom expression. PLOS Pathogens. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1007451
Nascimento, P. G. M. L., Cruz, B. L. S., Dantas, A. M, M., Freitas, F. C. L., Ambrósio, M. M. Q., Júnior, R. S., and da Silva, W. (2018). Incidence of root rot of melon in different soil management practices. Eur. J. Plant Pathol. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10658-018-1488-6
Carley, C. S., Bethke, P., Coombs, J., Clough, M., da Silva, W., et al. (2018). Genetic Variance Partitioning and Genome-Wide Prediction with Allele Dosage Information in Autotetraploid Potato. Genetics. https://doi.org/10.1534/genetics.118.300685
da Silva, W., Ingram, J., Hackett, C., Douches, D., De Jong, W., and Gray, S. (2017). Mapping Loci that Control Tuber and Foliar Symptoms Caused by PVY in Autotetraploid Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.). G3 - Genes | Genomes | Genetics. https://doi.org/10.1534/g3.117.300264
Cui, R., Zhang, L., Chen, Y., Huang, W., Fan, C., Wu, Q., Peng, D., da Silva, W., and Sun, X. (2017). Expression and evolutionary analyses of three acetylcholinesterase genes (Mi-ace-1, Mi-ace-2, Mi-ace-3) in the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne incognita. Experimental Parasitology. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.exppara.2017.01.008
Nascimento, K. J. T., Araujo, L., Resende, R. S., Schurt, D. A., da Silva, W. L., and Rodrigues, F. A. (2016). Silicon, acibenzolar-S-methyl and potassium phosphite in the control of brown spot in rice. Bragantia. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/1678-4499.281
da Silva, W. L., Cruz, M. F. A., Fortunato, A. A., and Rodrigues, F. A. (2015). Histochemical aspects of wheat resistance to leaf blast mediated by silicon. Scientia Agricola. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/0103-9016-2014-0221
Fortunato, A. A., da Silva, W. L., andRodrigues, F. A. (2014). Phenylpropanoid Pathway is Potentiated by Silicon in the Roots of Banana Plants During the Infection Process of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense. Phytopathology. http://dx.doi.org/10.1094/PHYTO-07-13-0203-R
Clark, C. A., da Silva, W. L., Arancibia, R. A., Main, J. L., Schultheis, J. R. van-Esbroeck, Z. P., Jiang, C., and Smith, J. (2013). Incidence of End Rots and Internal Necrosis in Sweetpotato is Affected by Cultivar, Curing, and Ethephon Defoliation. HortTechnology. http://horttech.ashspublications.org/content/23/6/886.full
da Silva, W. L., and Clark, C.A. (2013). Infection of sweetpotato by Fusarium solani and Macrophomina phaseolina prior to harvest. Plant Dis. http://dx.doi.org/10.1094/PDIS-05-13-0514-RE
da Silva, W. L., and Singh, R. (2012). First report of Alternaria alternata causing leaf spot on Aloe vera in Louisiana. Plant Dis. http://dx.doi.org/10.1094/PDIS-04-12-0343-PDN
da Silva, W. L., and Schoereder, J. H. 2008. Leaf-Cutting Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and Soil Classes: Preference, Survival and Nest Density. Sociobiology 52 (2): 403-415.
Sousa-Souto, L., Schoereder, J. H., Schaefer, C. E. G. R., da Silva, W. L. 2008. Ant nests and soil nutrient availability: the negative impact of fire. Journal of Tropical Ecology. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0266467408005464
Sousa-Souto, L., Guerra, M. B. B., Schoereder, J. H., Schaefer, C. E. G. R., da Silva, W. L. 2007. Determination of the conversion factor in colonies of Atta sexdens rubropilosa (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and its relationship with the quality of harvested leaf substrate. R. Árvore. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-67622007000100018