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soybean aphid

soybean aphid
Photo credit: Ted C. MacRae

The MacIntosh Lab

Welcome to the MacIntosh Lab @ Iowa State University. Our lab works on a variety of things, mostly centered around two big questions:

How do eukaryotic cells recycle ribosomes?

We want to know how cells transport ribosomes to the vacuole or lysosome, and the ribonucleases and other enzymes associated with the RNA salvage pathway.

RNA salvage pathway


What are the molecular bases of compatible and incompatible interactions between plants and insects?

We try to understand what are the mechanisms that plants (mainly soybean) use as defense against aphids, and the strategies used by aphids to avoid these defenses.

Response to aphid feeding



We support the Changing Cultures and Climate NAASC/ASPB Initiative

Changing CUltures and Climate logo

Latest Publications


Advancing outreach in plant science through Inclusion, Innovation and Integration

Broadening the impact of plant science through innovative, integrative, and inclusive outreach

Friesner et al 2021

Plant Direct 2021; 5:e00316

TOR regulation of RNA salvage


TOR mediates the autophagy response to altered nucleotide homeostasis in an RNase mutant

Kazibwe et al 2020

Journal of Experimental Botany, Volume 71, Issue 22, 31

aphid-infested soybean plant

The Resistant Soybean-Aphis glycines Interaction: Current Knowledge and Prospects

Natukunda and MacIntosh (2020)

Front. Plant Sci., 11 August 2020

chloroplast ribonucleases

Organellar and Secretory Ribonucleases: Major Players in Plant RNA Homeostasis

MacIntosh and Castandet (2020)

Plant Physiology Aug 2020, 183 (4) 1438-1452


  • ISU News service wrote a press release ("A new guide for communicating plant science") on our outreach paper (April 2021)
  • The white paper "Broadening the impact of plant science through innovative, integrative, and inclusive outreach" is now in Plant Direct. This paper is the result of a fantastic workshop organized by NAASC (April 2021).
  • Norin's paper on Drosophila Lamp1 is now in bioRxiv (January 2021)
  • Patricia Gallardo (Ag Biochem, junior) was awarded the Linder Undergraduate Research Scholarship to continue her work on aphid-soybean interactions (Jan 2021)
  • Zach paper on the role of TOR in the regulation of RNA salvage and nucleotide homeostasis is now in print in JXB (December 2020)
  • Gustavo was elected to the Board of Directors of the American Society for Plant Biologists (October 2020)
  • The RNases review by Gustavo and Benoît Castandet just came out in the August issue of Plant Physiology (August 2020)
  • Sarah Grambo (Biochem senior) presented her research in a poster at the Plant Biology World Summit (ASPB annual meeting) (July 2020)
Grambo ASPB poster