dylan kosma

Dylan Kosma

Associate Professor


The aerial organs of all higher plants are covered with a lipid-rich cuticle that serves to protect plants from their environment. The cuticle is comprised of a lipid polymer, cutin, that is embedded and covered with aliphatic waxes. Suberin is a biosynthetically-related lipid polymer that is found in tree bark, seed coats, the surface of mature roots and surrounding the vasculature of young roots. Suberin production is a ubiquitous response to wounding.  Collectively, cutin and suberin comprise the most abundant, naturally occurring lipid polymers on the planet. It is estimated that leaf cuticles alone represent a surface area twice that of the earth's land surface.

The Kosma lab is focused on understanding the complex plant lipid polymers cutin and suberin. We use a multidisciplinary approach combining biochemistry, analytical techniques and molecular genetics to comprehend the macromolecular structure and functional significance of these polymers with an emphasis on their role in plant tolerance to abiotic stress.


B.A. Southern Illinois University, 2002
M.S. Southern Illinois University, 2005
Ph.D. Purdue University, 2009


Book Chapter(s)


The final piece of the Triangle of U: Evolution of the tetraploid Brassica carinata genome


The Plant Cell, Volume 34, Issue 11, November 2022, Pages 4143–4172

Won Cheol Yim, Mia L Swain, Dongna Ma, Hong An, Kevin A Bird, David D Curdie, Samuel Wang, Hyun Don Ham, Agusto Luzuriaga-Neira, Jay S Kirkwood, Manhoi Hur, Juan K Q Solomon, Jeffrey F Harper, Dylan K Kosma, David Alvarez-Ponce, John C Cushman, Patrick P Edger, Annaliese S Mason, J Chris Pires, Haibao Tang, Xingtan Zhang

Here, we report a chromosome scale 1.31-Gbp genome assembly with 156.9-fold sequencing coverage for B. carinata, completing the reference genomes comprising the classic Triangle of U, a classical...

Leaf surface wax composition of genetically diverse mulberry (Morus sp.) genotypes and its close association with expression of genes involved in wax metabolism.


Current Science, 112(4), 759-766.

Mamrutha, H. M., Nataraja, K. N., Rama, N., Kosma, D., Mogili, T., Jhansi Lakshmi, K., Udaya Kumar, M., Jenks, M.

Analysis of aliphatic waxes associated with root periderm or exodermis from eleven plant species.


Phytochemistry 117: 351–362

Kosma D.K., Rice A, Pollard M.

Answering a four decade-old question on epicuticular wax biosynthesis.


J Exp Bot 67: 2538–2540

Kosma D.K., Rowland O.

Primary fatty alcohols are major components of suberized root tissues of Arabidopsis in the form of alkyl hydroxycinnamates.


Plant Physiology, 171, 1934-1950

Delude C., Fouillen L., Bhar P., Cardinal M-J., Pascal S., Santos P., Kosma D.K., Joubès J., Rowland O., Domergue F.

Role of HXXXD-motif/BAHD acyltransferases in the biosynthesis of extracellular lipids


Plant Cell Reports DOI 10.1007/s00299-014-1721-5

Isabel Molina & Dylan K Kosma

Altered lipid composition and enhanced nutritional value of Arabidopsis leaves following introduction of an algal diacylglycerol acyltransferase 2


Plant Cell 25(2):677-693

Rachel Miller, Timothy P Durrett, Dylan K Kosma, Todd A Lydic, Bagyalakshmi Muthan, Abraham JK Koo, Yury V Bukhman, Gavin E Reid, Gregg A Howe, John Ohlrogge, Christoph Benning

Suberin- fatty alcohols in Arabidopsis thaliana: Distributions in roots and contributions to seed coat barrier properties.


Plant Physiology 163:1118-1132.

Vishwanath SJ, Kosma DK, Pulsifer IP, Scandola S, Pascal S, Joub Domergue F, Lessire R, Rowland O, Domergue F

Identification of an Arabidopsis fatty alcohol: caffeoyl-coenzyme A acyltransferase required for the synthesis of alkyl hydroxycinnamates in root waxes.


Plant Physiology 160:237-248.

Kosma DK, Molina I, Ohlrogge JB, and Pollard M

Pleiotropic phenotypes of the sticky peel mutant provide new insight into the role of CUTIN DEFICIENT2 in epidermal cell function in tomato


Plant Physiology 159 (3):945-960

Satya Swathi Nadakuduti, Mike Pollard, Dylan K Kosma, Charles Allen, John B Ohlrogge, Cornelius S Barry

The glossyhead1 (gsd1) allele of ACC1 reveals a principal role for multi-domain Acetyl-CoA Carboxylase in the biosynthesis of cuticular waxes by Arabidopsis thaliana.


Plant Physiology 157:1079-1092.

Lü S, Zhao H, Parsons EP, Xu C, Kosma DK, Xu X, Chao D, Lohrey GT, Bangarusamy DK, Wang G, Bressan RA, Jenks MA

Changes in properties of wheat leaf cuticle during interactions with Hessian fly.


The Plant Journal 63:31-43.

Kosma DK, Nemacheck JA, Jenks MA, Williams CE

Fruit cuticle lipid composition during development in tomato ripening mutants


Physiologia Plantarum 139 (1): 107-117

DK Kosma, EP Parsons, T Isaacson, S Lü, JKC Rose, MA Jenks

Leaf cuticular wax amount and crystal morphology regulate post-harvest water loss in mulberry (Morus species)


Plant Physiology and Biochemistry 48 (8): 690-696

HM Mamrutha, T Mogili, K Jhansi Lakshmi, N Rama, Dylan Kosma, M Udaya Kumar, Matthew A Jenks, Karaba N Nataraja

Nitrogen supply and cyanide concentration influence the enrichment of nitrogen from cyanide in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L.)


Plant, Cell & Environment 33 (7): 1152-1160

Stephen D Ebbs, Dylan K Kosma, Elizabeth H Nielson, Marylou Machingura, Alan JM Baker, Ian E Woodrow

Arabidopsis CER8 encodes LONG-CHAIN ACYL-COA SYNTHETASE 1 (LACS1) that has overlapping functions with LACS2 in plant wax and cutin synthesis


The Plant Journal 59 (4): 553-564

Arabidopsis CER8 encodes LONG-CHAIN ACYL-COA SYNTHETASE 1 (LACS1) that has overlapping functions with LACS2 in plant wax and cutin synthesis

Cutin deficiency in the tomato fruit cuticle consistently affects resistance to microbial infection and biomechanical properties, but not transpirational water loss


The Plant Journal 60 (2): 363-377

Tal Isaacson, Dylan K Kosma, Antonio J Matas, Gregory J Buda, Yonghua He, Bingwu Yu, Arika Pravitasari, James D Batteas, Ruth E Stark, Matthew A Jenks, Jocelyn KC Rose

The Arabidopsis RESURRECTION1 gene regulates a novel antagonistic interaction in plant defense to biotrophs and necrotrophs


Plant physiology 151 (1): 290-305

Hyung Gon Mang, Kristin A Laluk, Eugene P Parsons, Dylan K Kosma, Bruce R Cooper, Hyeong Cheol Park, Synan AbuQamar, Claudia Boccongelli, Saori Miyazaki, Federica Consiglio, Gabriele Chilosi, Hans J Bohnert, Ray A Bressan, Tesfaye Mengiste, Matthew A Jenks

The impact of water deficiency on leaf cuticle lipids of Arabidopsis


Plant physiology 151 (4): 1918-1929

Dylan K Kosma, Brice Bourdenx, Amélie Bernard, Eugene P Parsons, Shiyou Lü, Jérôme Joubès, Matthew A Jenks

Cadmium bioaccumulation in yellow foxtail (Setaria glauca LP Beauv): Impact on seed head morphology


American Journal of Undergraduate Research 3 (1): 9-14

DK Kosma, JA Long, SD Ebbs

Transport and metabolism of free cyanide and iron cyanide complexes by willow


Plant, Cell & Environment 26 (9): 1467-1478

S Ebbs, J Bushey, S Poston, D Kosma, M Samiotakis, D Dzombak


Functional Role of Long Chain Acyl-CoA Synthetases (LACS) in Plant Development and Stress Responses


Frontiers in Plant Science, 2021

H Zhao, D Kosma, S Lu