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Autar K. Mattoo

Posted by | March 7, 2021


Autar K. Mattoo

Job Title:

Research Plant Physiologist


Phone Number:



Google Scholar Profile


Dr. Autar Mattoo is an ST Level senior scientist with the Agricultural Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture with over 40 years’ research experience. Innovative Research Leader (Department Head) for 16 years – led the ARS’s biotechnology flagship ‘Plant Molecular Biology Laboratory’ for nine years, and seven years the Vegetable Laboratory, both at Beltsville, Maryland.

Leads multinational, multidisciplinary research programs in nutrition-empowered crops, photosynthesis and extreme climates, translational research & future sustainable agriculture in United States, Israel, Italy, Poland, Serbia and Czech Republic.

US Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service:

2005 – Present: ST Level Research Plant Physiologist, Sustainable Agricultural Systems Laboratory.

2002-2004: ST Level Supervisory Plant Physiologist, Vegetable Laboratory. 1997-2004: Research Leader (Department Head), Vegetable Laboratory. 1988-1997: Research Leader, Plant Molecular Biology Lab; 1984-1988: Plant Physiologist, Plant Hormone Laboratory.

University of Maryland: 1996-1998: Special Member, Graduate Faculty, UMCP, College Park. 1986-1993: Adjunct Professor, Biological Sciences, UMBC, Baltimore.

Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda (India): 1969-1/1979: Tenured Assistant Professor, Faculty of Science.


Post-Doctoral Research

The University of Adelaide, S. Australia, Dept. of Biochemistry; 1975-1976; The University of New South Wales, Australia, Dept. of Botany; 1976; USDA-ARS-BARC-W, Postharvest Physiology Lab; 8/1976-1977.

Visiting Scientist

Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, Molecular Biology Unit: UGC National Associate; 1978; Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel, Dept. Plant Genetics; DAAD Scholar; 1979-1980; USDA-ARS-BARC-W, Beltsville, Plant Hormone Lab; Research Associate; 1980-1984; NIH, NCI (Bldg. 10), Bethesda; Pathobiology Lab; 1982-1983 PhD; Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda; Microbiology; MSc; Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda; Biochemistry; BSc;  Jammu & Kashmir University; Chemistry, Botany, Zoology & Geology; 1963

Research Areas:

  • Nutritional Biotechnology
  • Future Sustainability of Agriculture
  • Photosynthesis
  • Biomass and Biofuels
  • Biogenic Amines as Longevity and Nutrient Elixir

Current N-related Projects:


Mehta, R.A., Cassol, T., Li, N., Ali, N., Handa, A.K., and Mattoo, A.K.* (2002). Engineered polyamine accumulation in tomato enhances phytonutrient content, juice quality and vine life.  Nature Biotechnol. 20: 613-618.

Kumar, V., Mills, D.J., Anderson, J.D., and Mattoo, A.K.* (2004). An alternative agriculture system is defined by a distinct expression profile of select gene transcripts and proteins.  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 101: 10535-10540.

Mattoo, A.K.*, Sobolev, A.P., Neelam, A., Goyal, R.K., Handa, A.K., and Segre, A.L. (2006). NMR spectroscopy-based metabolite profiling of transgenic tomato fruit engineered to accumulate spermidine and spermine reveals enhanced anabolic and nitrogen-carbon interactions. Plant Physiol. 142: 1759-1770.

Neelam, A., Cassol, T., Mehta, R.A., …., and Mattoo, A.K.* (2008). A field-grown transgenic tomato line expressing higher levels of polyamines reveals legume cover crop mulch-specific perturbations in fruit phenotype at the levels of metabolite profiles, gene expression and agronomic characteristics. J. Exp. Bot. 59: 2337-2346.

Mattoo, A.K.; Teasdale, J.R. Ecological and genetic systems underlying sustainable horticulture. Hortic. Rev. 2010, 37, 331–362.

Fatima, T., Teasdale, J.R., Bunce, J., and Mattoo, A.K*. (2012).Tomato response to legume cover crop and nitrogen: Differing enhancement patterns of fruit yield, photosynthesis, and gene expression. Functional Plant Biol. 39:246-254.

Ren, M., Venglat, P., …., Mattoo, A., Selvaraj, G., and Datla R. (2012). Target of Rapamycin signaling regulates metabolism, growth, and life span in Arabidopsis. The Plant Cell, 24:4850-4874.

Goyal, R.K., and Mattoo, A.K.* (2014). Multitasking antimicrobial peptides in plant development and host defense against biotic/abiotic stress. Plant Science, 228:135-149.

Sobolev, A., Neelam, A., Fatima, T., Shukla, V., Handa, A.K., and Mattoo, A.K.* (2014).  Genetic introgression of ethylene-suppressed transgenic tomatoes with higher-polyamines trait overcomes many unintended effects due to reduced ethylene on the primary metabolome. Front. Plant Sci. 5:632. doi:10.3389/fpls.2014.00632.

Fatima, T., Sobolev, A., Teasdale, J., Kramer, M., Bunce, J., Handa, A., and Mattoo, A.K.* (2016) Fruit metabolite networks in engineered and non-engineered tomato genotypes reveal fluidity in a hormone and agroecosystem specific manner. Metabolomics, 12:103. DOI 10.1007/s11306-016-1037-2.

Roberts, D.P., and Mattoo, A.K. (2018). Sustainable agriculture – enhancing environmental benefits, food nutritional quality and building crop resilience to abiotic and biotic stresses. Agriculture 8:8; doi:10.3390/agriculture8010008