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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 the two big questions described below (look for more details in Projects and Publications). Gustavo also dedicates a significant effort to increase equity and inclusion in STEM (see EDI page).

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

Lack of representation in plant sciences

Equity, diversity, and inclusion efforts in professional societies: intention vs. reaction

Madzima and MacIntosh 2021

The Plant Cell, koab186

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

Meet the candidates for President-elect of ASPB (2021)

Gustavo's presentation for the ASPB meet the candidates event


Plantae Present Seminar 2020

Gustavo's presentation for the Plantae Present series organized by ASPB



  • Thelma Madzima and Gustavo's letter on the role of prfessional societies in EDI efforts is out in Plant Cell (July 2021)
  • ASPB election results are out! Gustavo will be the incoming President-elect of the society, starting in October (July 2021)
  • Welcome Prescott Jeckel, our new undergraduate research assistant, working to characterize vacuolar phosphatases (June 2021)
  • Welcome Lindsay Jackson, Ames High School science teacher, who will be our summer intern as part of the RET program (June 2021)
  • Patricia was awarded a SURF Fellowship from ASPB. Congratulations! Read more about it here (June 2021).

picture of ASPB SURF awardees

  • 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)