B.S. Universidad de Costa Rica
M.S. Universidad de Costa Rica
Ph.D. The Pennsylvania State University
Plant Reproductive Ecology and Evolution
Evolutionary Disease Biology & Plant-pathogen interactions
Population Genetics, Molecular Ecology
Biology of Invasive Species, Conservation Biology , Tropical Biology
Grants & Awards
Directorate of Environmental Biology, National Science Foundation. Research Initiation Grant: Disease as a driver of diversification in life history, pathogenicity and reproductive strategies. August 2009-July 2014
Directorate for Biological Sciences, National Science Foundation. Post-Doctoral Minority Fellowship, Phylogenetic, ecological and life-history determinants of a globally distributed disease complex. July 2007-June 2009.
Most Recent Publications:
Gibson* AK, E Petit, JI Mena-Ali, B Oxelman and ME Hood. 2013. Life-history strategy defends against disease and may select against physiological resistance. Ecology and Evolution 3: 1741–50.
Kariyat RR, JI Mena-Ali, B Forry*, MC Mescher, CM DeMoraes and AG Stephenson. 2012. Inbreeding, herbivory, and the transcriptome of Solanum carolinense. Entomologia Experimentalis Applicata 144: 134–44.
Gibson* AK, JI Mena-Ali and ME Hood. 2010. Loss of pathogens and disease resistance in threatened plant species. Oikos 119: 1919–1928.
Hood ME, JI Mena-Ali, AK Gibson*, B Oxelman, T Giraud, R Yockyeng, M Arroyo, F Conti, A Pedersen, P Gladieux and J Antonovics. 2010. The worldwide occurrence of the anther-smut fungus Microbotryum violaceum on species of the Caryophyllaceae. New Phytologist 187:217-229.
Mena-Ali JI, L Kessler* and AG Stephenson. 2009. Evidence for sheltered load around the S-locus in Solanum carolinense. Sexual Plant Reproduction 22:63-71.
Good-Avila S, JI Mena-Ali and AG Stephenson. 2008. Chapter 2: Genetic and Environmental Causes and Evolutionary Consequences of Variations in Self-Fertility in Self Incompatible Species, pages 33-51. In: Self-incompatibility in Flowering Plants – Evolution, Diversity, and Mechanisms, edited by Noni Franklin-Tong (Springer-Verlag).
Mena-Ali JI, L Kessler* and AG Stephenson. 2008. Inbreeding depression in Solanum carolinense, a species with a plastic self-incompatibility response. BMC Evolutionary Biology 8:10 (DOI:10.1186/1471-2148-8-10).
Mena-Ali JI and AG Stephenson. 2007. Segregation analyses of partial self-incompatibility in self and cross progeny of Solanum carolinense reveal a leaky S-allele. Genetics 177: 501-510.
Mena-Ali JI and OJ Rocha. 2005. Selective seed abortion affects the vigor of the offspring in Bauhinia ungulata L. (Fabaceae). Annals of Botany 95: 1017-1023.
Mena-Alí JI and OJ Rocha. 2005. Effect of ovule position within the pod on the patterns of seed production in Bauhinia ungulata L. (Fabaceae). Annals of Botany 95: 449–455.
Travers SE, JI Mena-Alí and AG Stephenson. 2004. Plasticity in the self-incompatibility of Solanum carolinense. Plant Species Biology 19:127-135.
Stephenson AG, SE Travers, JI Mena-Alí and JA Winsor. 2003. Pollen performance before and during the autotrophic-heterotrophic transition of pollen tube growth. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, Series B 358: 1009-1018.
FND 157: History of Natural History
BIO 110: Principles of Evolution, Ecology and Heredity