Associate Professor of Plant Pathology
Office Phone: 530-752-3248
FAX: 530-752-5674
E-Mail: nmcroberts@ucdavis.edu


B.Sc. University of Edinburgh, UK, 1987, Crop Science
Ph. D. University of Edinburgh, UK, 1992, Plant Pathology

Area of Specialization

Plant disease epidemiology, systems modelling and analysis, bio-economic analysis of plant diseases


Research in the Quantitative Biology & Epidemiology (QBE) lab is concerned with the dynamics of plant diseases at many different scales from the microscopic to the global. We are interested in how plant pathogens and plants interact at an organismal level; how those interactions result in the reproduction and dispersal processes of pathogens, which in turn result in disease epidemics at field and larger scales; how those epidemics result in management decisions being made by people; how the resulting management actions feed back into the dynamics of the epidemics over short and long time scales; and how all of those interactions contribute to the sustainability of food production and its environmental impact. Our view of epidemiology encompasses elements of biology, social sciences, economics, computer modelling techniques and applied mathematics and statistics.

Other Web pages

Faculty web page in Plant Pathology Department

Google Scholar citations

ResearchGate profile

Recent Publications

Jeger, M. J., F. van den Bosch, and N. McRoberts. “Modelling transmission characteristics and epidemic development of the tospovirus–thrip interaction.”Arthropod-Plant Interactions: 1-14. (2015 in press)

Hughes, G., McRoberts, N., and F. Burnett. “Information graphs for binary predictors.” Phytopathology (2014, in press).

Klosterman, Steven J., Anchieta, A. G., McRoberts, N., et al. “Coupling spore traps and quantitative PCR assays for detection of the downy mildew pathogens of spinach (Peronospora effusa) and beet (Peronospora schachtii).” Phytopathology  (2014, in press).

Choudhury, R. A., McRoberts, N., and W. D. Gubler. “Effects of punctuated heat stress on the grapevine powdery mildew pathogen, Erysiphe nectar.” Phytopathologia Mediterranea 53.1 (2014): 148-158.

Hughes, G., and N. McRoberts. “The structure of diagnostic information.”Australasian Plant Pathology 43.3 (2014): 267-286.

Scott, J. C., McRoberts, D. N., & Gordon, T. R. (2014). Colonization of lettuce cultivars and rotation crops by Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lactucae, the cause of fusarium wilt of lettuce. Plant Pathology, 63(3), 548-553.

Gottwald, T. R., W. Luo, and N. Mcroberts. “Risk-based residential HLB/ACP survey for California, Texas and Arizona.” Plant Management Network (2013).

Gent, D. H., Mahaffee, W. F., McRoberts, N., & Pfender, W. F. (2013). The use and role of predictive systems in disease management. Annual review of phytopathology, 51, 267-289.

Turechek, W. W., & McRoberts, N. (2013). Considerations of scale in the analysis of spatial pattern of plant disease epidemics. Annual review of phytopathology, 51, 453-472.

Esker, P. D., Savary, S., & McRoberts, N. (2012). Crop loss analysis and global food supply: focusing now on required harvests. CAB Reviews, 7(052), 1-14.

Savary, S., Mila, A., Willocquet, L., Esker, P. D., Carisse, O., & McRoberts, N. (2011). Risk factors for crop health under global change and agricultural shifts: a framework of analyses using rice in tropical and subtropical Asia as a model.Phytopathology, 101(6), 696-709.

Carisse, O., Tremblay, D. M., McDonald, M. R., Brodeur, L., & McRoberts, N. (2011). Management of Botrytis leaf blight of onion: the Québec experience of 20 years of continual improvement. Plant Disease, 95(5), 504-514.

McRoberts, N; Hall, C; Madden, LV; Hughes, G. (2011) Perceptions of disease risk: from social construction of subjective judgements to rational decision making. Phytopathology.