Rupesh Kariyat, Ph.D

Rupesh Kariyat, Ph.DRupesh Kariyat, Ph.D
Assistant Professor
SCNE 1.340
(956) 665-2953


Biology 6398 : Advanced Topics in Biology 1- Insect Ecology
Biology 4415: Entomology
Biology 6101: Scientific Thinking


Ph.D. The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA. 2012
M.S. University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY. 2007
B.S. Kerala Agricultural University, India.  2003

Areas of Interest

Ecological effects and molecular mechanisms underlying herbivore-pollinator- plant interactions in native and non-native, natural and agricultural ecosystems.


Using tools derived from chemical ecology to field biology, I plan to understand the signaling mechanisms and ecological effects of species interactions, focusing on herbivores, pollinators and their host plants. These include understanding behavioral modifications of herbivores to counter plant defenses, floral rewards and pollinator behavior, and oviposition behavior and flight muscle development in moths- to name a few. In addition, using electrophysiology and molecular genetics, I also examine the resistance factors in cereal crops (e.g., Sorghum) against sucking insects such as Aphids, and invasive ecology of the weed Solanum eleaegnifolium in Mediterranean region.

Most Recent Publications (2017)

RR Kariyat, SB Hardison, CM De Moraes, MC Mescher. Plant spines deter herbivory by restricting caterpillar movement.  Biology Letters 13 (5), 20170176

RR Kariyat, JD Smith, AG Stephenson, CM De Moraes, MC Mescher. Non-glandular trichomes of Solanum carolinense deter feeding by Manduca sexta caterpillars and cause damage to the gut peritrophic matrix. Proc. R. Soc. B 284 (1849), 20162323

J Smith, RR Kariyat. Plants are Not Sitting Ducks: Teaching Module on Plant Biochemical Interactions with Insects. Natural Sciences Education 46 (1)

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