Mark Tester

Professor, Plant Science
Associate Director, Center for Desert Agriculture
CSO & Co-Founder, Red Sea Farms LLC

Biological and Environmental Science and Engineering Division
Center membership : 
Center for Desert Agriculture

The Salt Lab


Education Profile

  • ​​​​​​​​Ph.D., Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge, U.K., 1988
  • B.Sc., Plant Sciences, University of Adelaide, Australia, 1984

Research Interests

The aim of research in Tester's Salt Lab is to understand molecular processes that allow plants to survive in suboptimal conditions, and to use this to improve the resilience of crops to a changing environment. His attention has increasingly turned to plants that are already highly salt-tolerant, and to domesticate them – such as quinoa and Salicornia. Another focus of attention has been the stress tolerance of wild relatives of tomatoes, where outcomes can be rapidly delivered by grafting commercial scions onto vigorous, salt-tolerant rootstocks. Research outputs are now being delivered through Red Sea Farms, a company co-founded by Tester and Dr. Ryan Lefers.

Selected Publications

From Faculty In Focus Series