Yonghao Li

Photo of Yonghao Li

Department of Plant Pathology and Ecology
The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station
123 Huntington Street
New Haven, CT 06511
Voice: (203) 974-8565 Fax: (203) 974-8502
E-mail: Yonghao.Li@ct.gov



Dr. Li has expertise in cellular responses in host-pathogen interactions, resistance mechanisms and epidemiology of fungal, bacterial and virus diseases. He also has experience in disease diagnostics and pathogen identification using traditional and molecular techniques.



B.S. Northeast Agricultural University, Plant Protection

M.S. Northeast Agricultural University, Plant Pathology

Ph.D. University of Arkansas; Plant Pathology


Station career:

Assistant Scientist II 2010-present

Past research:

Dr. Li’s previous research work focused on investigation of host-pathogen interactions, disease epidemiology and integrated pest management of vegetable, ornamental and row crop diseases. In his postdoctoral research program, Dr. Li developed in vitro techniques to evaluate host resistance to rust and powdery mildew diseases in dogwoods, daylilies, hydrangeas and switchgrasses. He also conducted histopathology of powdery mildew of bigleaf hydrangeas and daylily rust.


Current research:

Dr. Li’s primary responsibility is the execution, coordination and daily oversight of The Plant Disease Information Office, a full-service plant disease diagnostic laboratory serving all Connecticut stakeholders, private and commercial growers utilizing molecular, serological, biological and traditional diagnostic methods. Additional leadership responsibilities and duties include supervision of technical personnel, plant disease database management, cooperation with state and federal regulatory personnel and participation in the National Plant Diagnostic Network (Northeast Division).


Selected publications available from the author, Yonghao.Li@ct.gov

  • Y. Li, M. T. Mmbaga, B. Zhou, J. Joshua, E. Rotich, and L. Parikh. 2017. Diseases of Hydrangea. In Handbook of Florists’ Crop Diseases. Springer International Publishing. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-32374-9_36-1.
  • Tian, M., Zhao, L. M., Li, S., Huang. J., Sui, Z., Wen, J. Z., and Li, Y. H. 2016. Pathotypes and metalaxyl sensitivity of Phytophthora sojae and their distribution in Heilongjiang, China 2011–2015. J Gen Plant Pathol 82:132–141 (PDF)
  • Mmbaga, M T., Kim, M. S., Mackasmiel, L., and Li, Y. H. 2012. Evaluation of Hydrangea macrophylla for resistance to leaf-spot diseases. J. Phytopathol. 160:88–97. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. G., Yang, M. X., Li, Y., Liu, W. W., Wen, J. Z., and Li Y. H. 2011. Differential gene and protein expression in soybean at early stages of incompatible interaction with Phytophthora sojae. Agricultural Sciences in China, 10:902-910. (PDF)
  • Cheng, Q. K., Windham, A. S., Klingeman, W. E., Sakhanokho, H. F., Saxton, A. M., Li, Y. H., and Windham, M. T. 2011. Histological investigation of infection processes of Discula destructiva on leaves of Cornus florida. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 33:525–531. (PDF)

  • Windham, M. T., Reed, S. M., Mmbaga, M. T., Windham, A. S., Li, Y. H., and Rinehart, T. A. 2011. Evaluation of powdery mildew resistance in Hydrangea macrophylla. J. Environ. Hort. 29:60–64. (PDF)
  • Wadl, P. A., Dean, D., Li, Y. H., Vito, L. M., Scheffler, B. E., Hadziabdic, D., Windham, M. T., and Trigiano, R. N. 2011. Development and characterization of microsatellites for switchgrass rust fungus (Puccinia emaculata). Conservation Genet Resour. 3:185–188. (PDF)
  • Mmbaga, M. T., Li, Y. H., and Kim, M. S. 2010. First report of Myrothecium roridum causing leaf spot on garden hydrangea in the United States. Plant Dis. 94:1266. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H., Windham, M. T., Trigiano, R. N., Reed, S. M., Spiers, J. M., and Rinehart, T. A. 2009. Assessment of resistance components to powdery mildew in bigleaf hydrangeas. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 31:348-355. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H., Mmbaga, M. T., Windham, A. S., Windham, M. T., and Trigiano, R. N. 2009. Powdery mildew of dogwoods: Current status and future prospects. Plant Dis. 93:1084-1092. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H., Trigiano, R. N., Windham, M. T., Vito, L. M., Fare, D. C., Spiers, J. M., and Copes, W. E. 2009. Inhibition of urediniospore germination by Bacto agar and changes of germination and germ tube elongation of Puccinia hemerocallidis on one gelling agent over time. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 31:1-6. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H. and TeBeest, D. O. 2009. Temporal and spatial development of sorghum anthracnose in Arkansas. Plant Dis. 93:287-292. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H., Windham, M. T., Trigiano, R. N., Reed, S. M., Spiers, J. M., and Rinehart, T. A. 2009. Bright-field and fluorescence microscopic study of development of Erysiphe polygoni in susceptible and resistant bigleaf hydrangea. Plant Dis. 93:130-134. (PDF)
  • Littlefield, L. J., Newman, M. and Li, Y. H. 2008. Smut and rust diseases. Pages 151-163 in: Plant Pathology Concepts and Laboratory Exercises, Second Edition. Trigiano, R. N., Windham, M.T. and Windham, A. S. eds. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, USA.
  • Li, Y. H., Windham, M. T., Trigiano, R. N., Fare, D. C., Spiers, J. M., and Copes, W. E. 2007. Evaluation for resistance to powdery mildew in Cornus species and hybrids using a leaf disk assay. J. Environ. Hort. 25:131-133. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H., Windham, M. T., Trigiano, R. N., Fare, D. C., Spiers, J. M., and Copes, W. E. 2007. Microscopic and macroscopic studies on development of Puccinia hemerocallidis in resistant and susceptible daylily cultivars. Plant Dis. 91: 664-668. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H., Windham, M. T., Trigiano, R. N., Fare, D. C., Spiers, J. M., and Copes, W. E. 2006. Development of Erysiphe pulchra, the causal agent of powdery mildew, on resistant and susceptible dogwood (Cornus florida) leaf disks. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 28:71-76. (PDF)
  • Li, Y. H., Windham, M. T., Trigiano, R. N., Fare, D. C., Spiers, J. M., and Copes, W. E. 2005. Spore germination, infection structure formation, and colony development of Erysiphe pulchra on dogwood leaves and glass slides. Plant Dis. 89:1301-1304. (PDF)