Joel M. Chandlee

  • Professor, Department Chair
  • Phone: 401.874.2529
  • Email:
  • Office Location: CBLS, Rm 477


Joel M. Chandlee has been on the faculty at URI since 1988 with expertise and training as a plant molecular geneticist. His research interests lie with trying to understand the genetic mechanisms that act to control plant developmental processes. His teaching efforts are directed primarily toward the delivery of genetics related lecture and laboratory courses.


Dr. Chandlee’s research interests center on obtaining a basic understanding of fundamental molecular genetic mechanisms that act to control plant developmental processes through the regulation of gene activity. In addition, the laboratory is interested in developing efficient methods for gene transfer in plants for the purpose of trait modification and enhancement for a variety of plant species.

Senescence is an important developmental process in plants that eventually leads to whole plant, organ, tissue and cell death through endogenously controlled degenerative processes. The laboratory has used soybean cotyledon and whole plant senescence as a model system to identify genes and gene products regulated in expression during this developmental process. Understanding senescence at the molecular level should provide fundamental information about cell differentiation and the regulation of cellular events through the action of plant hormones and other signals. This work will begin the process of defining the various signaling pathways of induction and subsequent progress of the pathways and their branch points within the overall senescence program.

Efficient transformation methods have been developed for introducing genetic material into plant cells with the most success demonstrated with either microprojectile bombardment (biolistics) or Agrobacterium-based methods. In the past my laboratory has been working to develop protocols using both methods for introducing various gene constructs into a variety of species. This work is performed in collaboration with Dr. Albert Kausch, also of CMB.


  • Ph.D., Genetics, North Carolina State University, 1984
  • B.A., Biological Sciences, Rutgers University, 1978

Selected Publications


Luo. H., Lee, J-Y, Hodges, T., Eitas, T., Lickwar, C., Kausch, A., Chandlee, J., Hu, Q., Nelson, K. RTS, an anther-specific gene isolated from rice is required for male fertility and its promoter sequence directs tissue-specific transcription in dicotyledonous species. Plant Molecular Biology 62:397-408 (2006).

Qian Hu, Halina Kononowicz-Hodges, Kimberly Nelson-Vasilchik, David Viola, Peiyu Zeng, Haibo Liu, Albert P. Kausch, Joel M. Chandlee, Thomas K. Hodges, Hong Luo (2008) FLP mediated site-specific recombination in rice. Plant Biotechnology Journal 6:176-188.


Longo, C., Hu, Q., Nelson-Vasilchik, K., Lickwar, C., Viola, D., Hague, J., Chandlee, J.M., Luo, H. and Kausch, A.P. Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated Transformation of Turfgrasses. In: Methods in Molecular Biology – Agrobacterium Protocols (2nd edition), Wang, K., (ed.) The Humana Press Inc., Totowa, NJ (2005, pp 83-95).