Department of Plant Sciences


About Us

Internal Links

The Department of Plant Sciences is part of the School of Pure and Applied Sciences and also offers units to students from the School of Education, Agriculture and Enterprise Development and Human Sciences.

External Links in Scientific Research
The Department of Plant Sciences has external links with Kigali Institute of Science and Technology, Makerere University, MasindeMuliro University, Smallholder farmers in Lake Victoria Basin and Eastern Kenya and National Museum of Kenya.

Research Activities
Staff members are currently involved in research in the following areas:

  • Aquatic Sciences
  • Genetic Transformation
  • Tissue Culture
  • Biological Nitrogen Fixation (BNF)
  • Plant taxonomy
  • Molecular Biology
  • Plant Pathology
  • Plant extracts and their microbial properties
  • Ethnobotany

  • Determination of heavy metals in the African Vegetables and compost 

Programmes

Undergraduate program
• Bachelor of Science (Conservation Biology)

Postgraduate programmes
• Master of Science (Genetics)
• Master of Science (Ethnobotany)
• Master of Science (Plant Physiology and Biochemistry)
• Master of Science (Plant Taxonomy)
• Master of Science (Ecology)
• Master of Science (Developmental Botany)
The department also trains graduates at the PhD level in Genetics, Ethnobotany, Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, Plant Taxonomy, Ecologyand Developmental Botany.

Faculty

Academic Staff and Specialisation

The department has well qualified academic staff of 18, covering several areas of specialization such as Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, Ethnobotany, Plant Breeding, Plant Pathology, Genetics, Plant Taxonomy and Biosystematics, Molecular Biology, Ecology, Conservation Biology, Economic Botany and Plant Biotechnology.

Staff Profiles

 

Research

RESEARCH ACTIVITIES
Staff members are currently involved in research in the following areas:
•    Aquatic Sciences
•    Genetic Transformation
•    Tissue Culture
•    Biological Nitrogen Fixation (BNF)
•    Plant taxonomy
•    Molecular Biology
•    Plant Pathology
•    Plant extracts and their microbial properties
•    Ethnobotany
•    Determination of heavy metals in the African Vegetables and compost

STAFF MEMBERS PUBLICATIONS

2017

  • Jackline,T.E., Ombori, O., Njau, P.N. and Njoka, F.M. (2017). Determination of Stem Rust Ug99Disease Severity in Selected Wheat Backcrosses in Kenya. IOSR Journal of Agriculture and Veterinary Science (IOSR JAVS), 10(5): 66-71. www.iosrjournals.org. ISSN: 2319-2380,
  • Mburu, S.W., Koskey, G., Kimiti, J.M., Ombori, O., Maingi, J.M. & Njeru, E.M. (2016). Agrobiodiversity conservation enhances food security in subsistence‑based farming systems of Eastern Kenya. Agriculture & Food Security, 5(19). DOI 10.1186/s40066-016-0068-2
  • Wekesa, C.S.; Muoma, J.; Ombori, O., Maingi, J.; Okun, D., Juma, K.; Okoth, P.; Wamalwa, E.; Kollenberg, M. and Mauti, E. (2017). Genetic Characterization of Rhizosphere Bacteria that Inhabit Common Bean Nodules in Western Kenya Soils. Applied Microbiology, 3(1): 128. doi: 10.4172/2471-9315.100012. ISSN:2471-9315

2016

  • Mburu, S.W., Koskey, G., Kimiti, J.M., Ombori, O., Maingi, J.M. & Njeru, E.M. (2016). Agrobiodiversity conservation enhances food security in subsistence‑based farming systems of Eastern Kenya. Agriculture & Food Security, 5(19). DOI 10.1186/s40066-016-0068-2

  • Mbinda, W., Anami, S., Ombori, O., Dixelius, C. & Oduor, O. (2016). Efficient Plant Regeneration of Selected Kenyan Sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.) Cultivars through Somatic Embryogenesis. Journal of Tissue Science & Engineering, 7(2).

  • Dharani, N. (2016). Traditional Ethnomedicinal uses and phytochemical compounds of Carissa spinarum L. in East Africa: a review. Pharmaceutical Journal l, 02.

  • Dharani, N. (2016). A Review of Traditional Uses and Phytochemical Constituents of Indigenous Syzygium Species in East Africa. Pharmaceutical Journal of Kenya, 22(4). ISSN 2411-6386.

  • Dharani, N. (2016). Assessment of the Ecological Distribution, Species Diversity and abundance of Medicinal Plants in Central Kajiado, Kajiado County, Kenya. International Journal of Plant, Animal and Environ Sciences, 6(3). ISSN-2231-4490.

  • Ndolo, M.C. & Dharani, N. (2016). Najma Dharani (2016). Socioeconomic and Biophysical factors affecting tree richness and diversity in Machakos County, Eastern Kenya. International Journal of Plant, Animal and Environ Sciences, 6(3). ISSN-2231-4490.

  • Waiganjo R., Karanja, R.H.N., Mureithi, S.M., Nyberg G. & Mwangi, P.N. (2016). Impacts of enclosures on restoration of a semi-arid rangeland in West Pokot County,Kenya. Journal of Environment and Earth Sciences, ISSN 2225-0948.

  • Naluyange, V., Ochieno, D.M.W., Wandahwa, P., Odendo, M., Maingi, J.M., Amoding, A., Ombori, O., Mukaminega, D. and Muoma, J. (2016). Belowground influence of Rhizobium inoculant and water hyacinth composts on yellow bean infested by Aphis fabae and Colletotrichum lindemuthianum under field conditions. Journal of Plant Studies, 5(2): 32-36.
  • Mutiga, M.I.,  Muoria, P.K.,  Kotut, K. and Karuri, H.W. (2016). Behavioural patterns and responses to human disturbances of wild Somali ostriches (Struthiomolybdophanes) in Samburu, Kenya. International Journal of Advanced Research,  4(8): 495-502.
  • Ocholla, G.O.,  Mireri, C. and Murcia, P.K.  (2016). Application of Indigenous Knowledge Systems in Wildlife Management: A Case Study of the Samburu Pastoral Community in Kenya. International Journal of Applied Science and Technology Vol. 6, No. 1;72-80 February 2016 http://www.ijastnet.com/journal/index/809
  •  Ndang’ang’a, P.K.,  Barasa , F.M.,  Kariuki, M.N.  and Muoria, P. (2016).  Trends in forest condition, threats and conservation action as derived from participatory monitoring in coastal Kenya" , African Journal of Ecology, 54: 76–86
  • Muoria, P.,  Matiku, P., Ng’weno, F.,  Munguti, S.,  Barasa, F.  and Ayiemba, W. (2016).  Coping with climate change in Kenya. Policy Guide for Ecosystem based Adaptation for National and County Governments. Nature Kenya, Nairobi


2015
•    Piero, N.M., Murugi N.J., Okoth, O.R., Ombori, O.R.,Jalemba, M.A. and Chelule, C.R. (2015). RNAi-Mediated Downregulation of Cyano-Glycoside Biosynthesis in Kenyan Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) Genotypes. Plant Biochemistry and Physiology, 3 (3):148-153. doi:10.4172/2329-9029.1000148
•    Ngugi, M. P., Murugi, N.J., Oduor, O. R., Mgutu, A. J., Ombori R. O. and Cheruiyot, R.C. (2015). Determination of cyanogenic compounds content in transgenic Acyanogenic Kenyan cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) genotypes: Linking molecular analysis to biochemical analysis. Analytical and Bioanalytical Techniques, 6(5):264-271.
•    Ngugi M.P., Oduor, R.O. Omwoyo, R.O.,Njagi, J.M., Mgutu, A.J. and Cheruiyot R.C. (2015). Regeneration of Kenyan cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) genotypes. Plant Biochemistry and Physiology, 3: 147. doi:10.4172/2329-9029.1000147.
•    Ngetich, A., Runo, Ombori, O., Ngugi, M, Kawaka, F., Perpetua, A. and Nkanata, G., (2015). Low cost micropropagation of local varieties of Taro (Colocasia esculenta spp.). British Biotechnology Journal 6(4): 136-145, Article no.BBJ.2015.036. ISSN: 2231–2927. www.sciencedomain.org
•    Gacheri, P., Machuka, J., Ombori,O. and Bukach, B. (2015). Agrobacterium Mediated Transformation of selected maize inbred lines with pPZP200 towards enhancement of lysine and methionine montent. Journal of Biology, Agriculture and Healthcare, 5(2): 6-18. ISSN 2224-3208(Paper) ISSN 2225-093X (Online). www.iiste.org
•    Langat, C. Gathaara, M.H. and Cheruiyot, R. (2015). Comparative response of catechin levels in drought tolerant and susceptible tea clones (Camellia sinensis (L) O Kuntze under different moisture regimes. African Journal of Plant Science, 9(8):334-338
•    Bjorå C.B.. Wabuyele, E., and Olwen M. Grace, O.M.(2015). The uses of Kenyan aloes: an analysis of implications for names, distribution and conservation. Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, 11(1)
 
2014
•    Mutua, B.M., Muriithi, J.K. and Ombori, O. (2014). Farmers’ awareness level on the effect of parthenium weed (Parthenium hysterophorus L.) on agricultural production and its control in Nyando division, Kenya. International Journal of Agriculture. Photon, 125: 305-310.
•    Kawaka, F, Dida, M.M., Opala, P.A., Ombori, O., Maingi, J., Osoro, N. Muthini, M. Amoding, A., Mukaminega, D. and Muoma, J. (2014). Symbiotic Efficiency of Native Rhizobia Nodulating Common Bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) in Soils of Western Kenya., International Scholarly Research Notices, 2014, Article ID 258497. http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/258497
•    Osoro, N.O, Kawaka, F, Naluyange, V, Ombori, O, Muoma, J.O., Amoding, A, Mukaminega, D., Muthini, M. and Maingi, J.M, (2014). Effects of water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes L. [mart.] solms) compost on growth and yield of common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris) in Lake Victoria Basin. European International Journal of Science and Technology, 3 (7): 173-186. ISSN: 2304-9693. www.eijst.org.u
•    Mvuria, J.M. and Ombori, O. (2014). Low cost macronutrients in the micropropagation of selected sweet potato [Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam] varieties. Journal of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, 3(1): 89-101. ISSN: 2334-2404. www.aripd.org/jaes
•    Muoma, J.V.O. and Ombori, O. (2014). Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of selected Kenyan maize (Zea mays L.) genotypes by introgression of Nicotiana Protein Kinase (npk1) to enhance drought tolerance. American Journal of Plant Sciences, 5: 863-883 http://www.scirp.org/journal/ajps
•    Kawaka, F., Ombori, O., Maingi, J.M., Amoding, A, Mukaminega, D . and Muoma, J. (2014). Response of Common Bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) Cultivars to Water Hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes [Mart.] Solms) Compost in Kisumu, Kenya along the Lake Victoria Basin. American Journal of Experimental Agriculture. www.sciencedomain.org
•    Naluyangea, V., Ochieno, D.M.W., Maingi, J.M., Ombori, O., Mukaminega, D., Amoding, A., Odendo, M., Okoth, S.A., Shivoga, W.A. and Muoma, J.V.O (2014). Compatibility of Rhizobium inoculant and water hyacinth compost formulations in rosecoco bean and consequences on Aphis fabae and Colletotrichum lindemuthianum infestations. Applied Soil Ecology 76 (2014) 68– 77. www.elsevier.com/locate/apsoil.
•    Muthini, M., Maingi, J.M., Muoma, J.O., Amoding, A., Mukaminega, D., Osoro, N. Mgutu, A and Ombori, O. (2014). Morphological assessment and effectiveness of indigenous rhizobia isolates that nodulate P. vulgaris in water hyacinth compost testing field in Lake Victoria Basin. British Journal of Applied Science & Technology, 4(5): 718-738. www.sciencedomain.org.
•    Osoro, N., Ombori, O., M., Muoma, J.O., Amoding, A., Mukaminega, D., Muthini, M. and Maingi, J.M. (2014). Effects of water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes [mart.] solms) compost on growth and yield parameters of maize (Zea mays). British Journal of Applied Science & Technology, 4(4): 616-633. www.sciencedomain.org.
•    Njenga, P., Edema, R. and Kamau, J. (2014). Combining ability for beta-carotene and important quantitate traits in cassavaf1 population. Journal of Plant Breeding and Crop Science , 6(2): 26-30.
•    McCoy, T. and Newton, L.E. (2014) A new shrubby species of Aloe in the Imatong Mountains, Southern Sudan. Haseltonia, 19: 64–65.
•    Newton, L.E., Wabuyele, E. and Stedje, B. (2014). Ethnobotanical uses of Sansevieria Thunb. (Asparagaceae) in Coast Province of Kenya. Ethnobotany Research and Applications, 12: 51–69.
•    Wabuyele, E., Bisikwa, J., Clark, K., Luweti,A., Gerald, K., Lotter, W., McConnachie, A, Mersi, W. (2014). Roadside survey of the invasive weed Parthenium hysterophorous L. (Asteraceae) in East Africa. Journal of East African Natural History. 103(1):49-57
•    Takawira-Nyenya, R., Newton, L. E., Wabuyele, E., and  Stedje, B. (2014)  Ethnobotanical Uses of Sansevieria Thunb. (Asparagaceae) in Coast Province of Kenya.Ethnobotany Research & Applications, 12: 51-7

•    Mutune, A.N., Makobe,M.A. and  Abukutsa-Onyango, M.O.O. (2014). Heavy metal content of selected African leafy vegetables planted in urban and peri-urban Nairobi, Kenya. 8(1): 66-74.


2013
•    Atieno, R.N., Owour, O.P. and Omwoyo, O. (2013). Antibiotic Resistance of Fecal Bacteria indicators and Pathogens Isolated from Sludge and Wastewaters of Abattoirs in Nairobi, Kenya. Journal of Biology, 1(5): 106-11. ISSN 2052-0751

•    Atieno, N. A., Owour , O.P. and Omwoyo, O. (2013). Isolation of high antibiotic resistant fecal bacteria indicators, Salmonella and Vibrio species from raw abattoirs sewage in Peri-Urban locations of Nairobi, Kenya. Greener Journal of Biological Sciences, 3(5): 172-178. ISSN: 2276-7762.
•    Atieno, N. A., Owour, O.P. and Omwoyo, O. (2013). Heavy metal and associated antibiotic resistance of fecal coliforms, fecal streptococci and pathogens isolated from wastewaters of abattoirs in Nairobi, Kenya. Journal of Applied Biosciences, 64:4858 – 4866. ISSN 1997–5902.
•    Ombori, O., Muoma, J.V.O. and Machuka, J. (2013). Agrobacterium-mediated genetic transformation of selected tropical inbred and hybrid maize (Zea mays L.) lines. Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture, 113(1): 11-23.
•    Osoro, N., Maingi, J.M., Ombori, O., Muoma, J.O., Amoding, A., Mukaminega, D. and Muthini, M. (2013). Effects of water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes [mart.] solms) compost on growth and yield parameters of maize (Zea mays). In C. Onyango, G. Unbehend and M. Lindhauer (eds.), Trends and opportunities in the production, processing and consumption of staple food crops in Kenya. TUD press, Verlag der Wissenschaften GmbH, pp 130-138.
•    Newton, L.E. (2013). The genus Aloe in West Africa. The Nigerian Field 77: 21–24.
•    Newton, L. (2013). An aloe miscellany. Aloe 50: 58–60.

•    Mutune, A.N., Makobe,M.A. and  Abukutsa-Onyango, M.O.O. (2013). Impact analysis of lead, copper and zinc content in selected African indigenous and exotic vegetables from Nairobi markets, Kenya. African Journal of Environmental Science and Technology, 7(6):  540-545.


2012
•    Ogero, K., Gitonga N.M, Maina, M., Ombori, O. and Ngugi, M. (2012). Cost-effective nutrient sources for tissue culture of Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz). African Journal of Biotechnology, 11(66): 12964-12973.
•    Ogero, K., Gitonga N.M., Maina, M., Ngugi, M. and Ombori, O (2012). Low Cost Tissue Culture Technology in the Regeneration of Sweet Potato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam). Research Journal of Biology, 2(2): 71-78.
•    Ogero, K., Gitonga N.M, Maina, M., Ombori, O. and Ngugi, M. (2012). Response of two sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam) varieties regenerated on low cost tissue culture medium. Journal of Agricultural Science and Technology A & Journal of Agricultural Science and Technology B 2(5B): 534-1250.
•    Chandler, M., Castro, D.P.B.R, Lowma, M.D.L., Muoria, P.,  Oguge, N. and Rubenstein, R. (2012). International citizen science: Making the local global.  Front Ecol Environ Volume 10(6). http://www.esajournals.org/doi/full/10.1890/110283
•    Mwangi, B.,Ombogo, M.,Amadi, J., Baker,N. and Mugalu, D.(2012). Fish species composition and diversity of small riverine ecosystems in the Lake Victoria basin, Kenya. International journal of science and technology,2: 9
•    Nchore S.B., Waceke J.W. and Kariuki G.M. (2012). Efficacy of selected agro-industrial wastes in managing root-knot nematodes on black nightshade in Kenya. International Schorarly Research Network (Agronomy) 2012: 1-13.
•    Newton, L.E. (2012) The identity of Sansevieria bagamoyensis. Bradleya 30: 103–106. (ISSN 0265–086X).
•    Newton, L.E. (2012). Going, going, nearly gone — a highly endangered tree species in Kenya. Euphorbia World, 8(3): 27–30.
•    Kariuki, F.K.;  Ng'ang'a, V.G. and  Kotut, K. (2012). Hydrochemical Characteristics, Plant Nutrients and Metals in Household Greywater and Soils in Homa Bay Town. The Open Environmental Engineering Journal, 2012, 5: 103-109.

  •    Chandler, M., Castro, D.P.B.R, Lowma, M.D.L., Muoria, P., Oguge, N. and Rubenstein, R. (2012). International citizen science: Making the local global. Front Ecology Environment, 10(6).  http://www.esajournals.org/doi/full/10.1890/11028
  • Chandler, M., Castro, D.P.B.S., Lowma, M.D., Muoria, P.,   Oguge, N. and Rubenstein, D. (2012). International citizen science: making the local global. Front Ecology Environment, 10(6): 328-331, doi: 10. 1890/11028 


   Research grants awarded to the members of staff
1.    2014-2016: Increasing Soybeans and Climbing Beans production in smallholders` farms in Eastern Kenya, Funded by RUFORUM.
2.    2012-2014 Participatory development and validation of culture models of integrating fish polyculture-livestock into irrigated ricefields to enhance competitiveness of rice farming in Mwea, Kenya. Funded by RUFORUM.
3.    2011-2013: Production of organic fertilizer from water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes [Mart.] Solms) for organic farming and conservation of ecosystem in Lake Victoria basin.
4.    2011-2013 Participatory Development, Testing and Validation of Concepts and Technologies for Site-Specific Detection and Control of Plant Parasitic Nematodes Infecting Tomatoes in Mwea, Kenya. Funded by RUFORUM.
5.    2011-2013 Enhancing crop productivity and income generation through integrated water and soil fertility management in different agro-ecological zones of Kenya. Funded by KAPAP/WB.
6.    2010-2013 Lengthening the Rice Value Chain Through Commercialization of Rice By-Products. Funded by NCST.
7.    2010-2013 Value addition of fish and fisheries wastes/by-products into aquafeed for tilapia and catfish. Funded by NCST.
8.    2010: Applying Tissue culture to improve access to cassava and sweet potatoes clean planting materials for farmers in Eastern and Central Africa.
9.    2005 – 2008: Acceptability and Production of Soybean and their Impact onfarm ing communities of Lake Victoria Basin. Funded by Sida & Sadec. Under Vic-Res  (Interuniversity Council for East Africa).
10.    2008: Working with small scale farmers in semiarid areas on cropping systems and rain harvesting techniques to alleviate food security – Vice-Chancellor’s Research Grant.
11.    Enhancing Intergrated Pest and Diseases Management Strategies in the production of Green Gram in parts of Lake Victoria Basin. Funded by SIDA & SADEC. Under Vic-Res (Interuniversity Council for East Africa).

 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 05 October 2016 05:15

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