Dr. Ke Dong

Plant Pest Diagnostics Branch, California Department of Food & Agriculture
3294 Meadowview Road, Sacramento, CA 95832-1448, U.S.A.
Office: 916-738-6694
Fax: 916-262-1190
Email: ke.dong@cdfa.ca.gov

Ke Dong

Senior Plant Nematologist (Specialist)

Curriculum Vitae


  • Doctor of Philosophy (Nematology) - North Carolina State University, 1996.
  • Master of Science (Nematology) - Shenyang Agriculture University, China, 1988.
  • Bachelor of Science (Nematology) - Shenyang Agriculture University, China, 1985.

Professional Positions

  • 2005.12 – present, Senior Plant Nematologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, Plant Pest Diagnostics Center, Sacramento, CA
  • 1999.6 – 2005.12, Associate Plant Nematologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, Plant Pest Diagnostics Center, Sacramento, CA
  • 1998.1 – 1999.6, Post-Doctoral Research Associate, Department of Plant Pathology and Physiology, Clemson University, Clemson, SC.
  • 1997.1 – 1997.12, Post-Doctoral Research Associate, Department of Plant Pathology, University of California, Riverside, CA.


  • Nematode Diagnostics and Research
    Specializes in quarantine and regulatory nematology. Performs highly specialized and routine taxonomic identification of plant-parasitic nematodes; and confirms regulatory pest identifications made by colleagues and others as required.  Conducts research as needed to develop new nematode recovery diagnostics, including molecular-biological assays for supplementary identification, or preservation methods.
  • In-charge of laboratory diagnostics for nematode surveys
    Directs and coordinates laboratory diagnostic activities associated with pest detection and other nematode surveys and projects such as the annual Statewide Nematode Survey.  Responsible for providing training to state, county, and other regulatory officials involved in sampling for nematode surveys.  Works with CDFA, USDA, Counties, Universities, and other agencies to decide the depth and breadth of survey activity such as geographical regions, target crops, and target nematodes for which to survey.  Recruits, hires, and supervises temporary employees to work on survey sample processing.
  • Scientific consultation and collaboration
    Assigns appropriate pest ratings to nematodes identified; makes recommendations of pest ratings for intercepted or newly discovered nematode pests; reviews permit application security and other provisions.  Provides program development pest risk mitigation, other consultations and expertise to Department Staff, county agricultural commissioners, the University of California, and the United States Department of Agriculture.
  • Evaluation & Application of Applied Research Methods
    Develops quality standards.  Maintains and monitors these standards for laboratory extraction and identification methods.  Evaluates laboratory operations.  Participates in program development.  Designs, develops and applies new methods to laboratory operations, including molecular DNA diagnostics.  Evaluates applied research and maintains literature which may have application to the operations of the Nematology laboratory
  • Service
    Participates in the jointly sponsored University of California and the Department annual nematology conference.  Maintains and upgrades a nematology program web site on the Department internet and intranet home page.

Selected Publications

  1. Dong, K. 2015. Multiplex PCR Identification of Five Common Root‐Knot Nematode Species in California (Meloidogyne arenaria, M. chitwoodi, M. hapla, M. incognita, and M. javanica). Link
  2. Chitambar J. J., K. Dong, S. A. Subbotin and R. Luna. 2007. Do exotic and invasive plant-parasitic nematodes exist in California’s agricultural production sites? Journal of Nematology, 39:91 (Abstract).
  3. Dong, K. 2007. PCR-RFLP Identification of G. pallida, G. rostenchiensis, Heterodera spp. and Meloidogyne spp. at the Nematology Laboratory, Plant Pest Diagnostics Branch, California Department of Food and Agriculture. Link
  4. Dong, K., J. J. Chitambar, R. W. Hackney, and R. Luna. 2005. California statewide nematode survey project. California Plant Pest and Pest Disease Report, 22 (1): 38-41.
  5. Dong, K., K. R. Barker, and C. H. Opperman, 2005. Virulence genes in Heterodera glycines: allele frequencies and Ror gene groups among field isolates and inbred lines. Phytopathology 95:186-191.
  6. Barker, K. R. and K. Dong. 2004. Nematode Infestations: Assessment. Page 788-792. In “Encyclopedia of Plant and Crop Science” edited by R.M. Goodman. Marcel Dekker Inc. New York. USA. Link
  7. Lehman, P. S., J.A. Brito, K. Dong, Z. A. Handoo, R Inserra, T. Powers, and L. Millar. 2002. Creation of a list of exotic nematode plant pests of agricultural and environmental significance to the United States with associated selection criteria and fact sheets. Society of Nematologist website. Link
  8. Dong, K., R. A. Dean, B. A. Fortnum, and S. A. Lewis. 2001. Development of PCR primers to identify species of root-knot nematodes: Meloidogyne arenaria, M. hapla, M. incognita and M. javanica. Nematropica 31: 271-280.
  9. Dong, K., R. A. Dean, B. A. Fortnum, and S. A. Lewis. 2001. A species-specific DNA probe for the identification of Meloidogyne hapla. Nematropica 31: 17-23.
  10. Millar, L., P. Lehman, R. Inserra, T. Powers, J. Brito, K. Dong, and Z. Handoo. 2004. A List of Exotic Nematode Plant Pests of Agricultural and Environmental Significance to the United States. (Abstract) Journal of Nematology. 36(3): 334.
  11. Dong, K., C. H. Opperman and K. R. Barker. 1997. Genetics of soybean-Heterodera glycines interactions. Journal of Nematology 29 (4): 509-522
  12. Dong, K. and C. H. Opperman. 1997. Genetic analysis of parasitism in soybean cyst nematode Heterodera glycines. Genetics 146 (4): 1311-1318.
  13. Opperman, C. H., K. Dong, and S. Chang. 1995. Genetic analysis of the soybean – Heterodera glycines interaction. Page 65-76. In “Advances in Molecular Plant Nematology” edited by F. lamberti, C. De Giorgi and D. Bird. NATO ASI Series A. Life Sciences Vol. 268.