Balakrishnan Prithiviraj

Associate Dean, International, Associate Professor/Plant Stress Physiology Research Chair

Phone: 902.893.6643
Mailing Address: 
Department of Plant, Food, and Environmental Sciences
Agricultural Campus
PO Box 550
Truro, NS, B2N 5E3


  • BIOA 2005 Principles of Plant Pathology
  • BIOA 0101 Plant Pathology
  • ENVA 3004 Principles of Pest Management

Research Interests

  • Marine Bioproducts to Improve Plant, Animal and Human Health
  • Plant Biostimulants – Discovery and Molecular Mode of Action
  • Molecular Plant Root-Microbe Interaction
  • Plant Disease Mangement

Marine Bioproducts / Plant Biostimulant Research Laboratory

  • Current Lab Members
  • Past Lab Members

Selected Publications

1.       Shukla PS, Shotton K, Norman E, Niely W, Crictchley A and B. Prithiviraj (2017) Seaweed extract improve drought tolerance of soybean by regulating stress-response genes. AoB Plants 10(1).

2.       Ilangumaran I, Stratton G, Ravichandran S, Shukla PS, Potin P, Asiedu S and B. Prithiviraj (2017) Microbial degradation of lobster shells to extract chitin derivatives for plant disease management. Frontiers  in Microbiology 8.

3.       Kulshreshtha G, Rathgeber B, MacIsaac J, Boulianne S, Brigitte L, Stratton G, Thomas NA, Critchley AT, Hafting J and Balakrishnan Prithiviraj (2017) Feed supplementation with red seaweeds, Chondrus crispus and Sarcodiotheca gaudichaudii, reduce Salmonella Enteritidis in laying hens. Frotiers in Microbiology 8.

4.       Liu J, Kandasamy S, Zhang J, Kirby CW, Karakach T, Hafting J, Critchely A and B. Prithviraj. (2015) Prebiotic effects of diet supplemented with the cultivated red seaweed Chondrus crispus or with fructo-oligo-saccharide on host immunity, colonic microbiota and gut microbial metabolites. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 15:1

5.       Liu L, Hafting J, Critchley AT, Banskota AH and Prithiviraj B (2013). Chemical components of the cultivated red seaweed Chondrus crispus enhance immune response of Caenorhabditis elegans against Pseudomonas aeruginosa through pmk-1, daf-2/daf-16, and skn-1 pathways. Applied Environmental Microbiology 79:7343-7350 (Cover Feature).

6.       Ravichandran S, Stone SL, Benkel B, Prithiviraj B (2013). Purple Acid Phosphatase5 is required for maintaining basal resistance against Pseudomonas syringae in Arabidopsis. BMC Plant Biology 13:107.

7.       Nair P, Kandasamy S, Zhang J, Ji X , Kirby CW, Benkel B, Hodges MD, Critchley AT, Hiltz D, and Prithiviraj B (2012) Transcriptional and metabolomic analysis of Ascophyllum nodosum extract mediated freezing tolerance in Arabidopsis thaliana. BMC Genomics 13:643.

8.       Jithesh MN, Wally OSD, Manfield I, Critchley AT, Hiltz D, and Prithiviraj B (2012) Analysis of seaweed extract induced transcriptome leads to identification of a negative regulator of salt tolerance in Arabidopsis thaliana. HortScience 47:704-709.

9.       Fan D, Hodges D M, JunZeng J,  Kirby CW,  Ji X, Locke SJ, Critchley AT, and Prithiviraj, B. (2011). Commercial extract of the brown seaweed Ascophyllum nodosum enhances phenolic antioxidant content of spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) which protects Caenorhabditis elegans against oxidative and thermal stress. Food Chemistry 124:195-202.

10.   Rayorath P, Benkel B, Hodges DM, Allan-Wojtas P, MacKinnon SL, Critchley AT, and Prithiviraj B. 2009. Lipophilic components of the brown seaweed, Ascophyllum nodosum, enhance freezing tolerance in Arabidopsis thaliana. Planta 230:135-147. (Cover feature)

More publications..

Contributions to practical applications of knowledge - Patents

1.      Prithiviraj B. et al. (2011) Bioactive compounds of Ascophyllum nodosum and their use for alleviating salt-induced stress in plants. US patent (Filed April 1, 2009).

2.      Prithiviraj B, Smith DL, et al. (2011). Use of lipo-chitooligosaccharides for increasing phototsynthesis in plants and corresponding methods an compositions. Canadian Patent CA 2382614.

3.      Smith DL, Prithiviraj B et al. (2009) Methods of increasing photosynthesis in plants comprising an exposure thereof to lipochitooligosaccharides and compositions therefor. United States Patent US 7,637,980 B2.

4.      Prithiviraj B, Smith DL, et al. (2007) Composition for accelerating seed germination and plant growth. United States Patent US 6,979,664, European Patent EP01098567A1; Australian Patent AU04892499A1

5.      Smith DL, Prithiviraj B, Zhou X, Souleimanov A (2001) Use of lipo-chitooligosaccharides for increasing photosynthesis in plants and corresponding methods and compositions. WO00126465A1, CA 2382614, EP1554932.