Dr. Lakshman is a senior research Plant Pathologist with the USDA-ARS Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, Beltsville, Maryland USA. He was born in village Kenjakura, Dist. Bankura, West Bengal, India, on 10 February, 1954. He received his Ph.D. in Plant Pathology (Cornell Univ., USA, 1984), M.Sc. in Plant Pathology (IARI, New Delhi, 1997), M.S. in Information Systems (Univ. of Maine, USA, 2003), and B.Sc. (Ag) Hons in Plant Pathology (Visva-Bharati University, 1974). He was a post-doctoral fellow in the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada (1984-86) and the Univ. Of Maine (1986-1998), and served in the graduate faculty of Univ. of Maine.
Dr. Lakshman has contributed in diverse fields of Plant Pathology. His research encompassed molecular diagnostics, biology and alternative management of soilborne pathogens, mechanisms of biocontrol, virulence and hypovirulence of fungal plant pathogens, transgenic resistance, and pathogenesis of viral, viroidal, and bacterial plant pathogens. His fundamental and applied research were published in highly reputed journals and cited in many textbooks and reviews.
As a life member of the Indian Phytopathological Society (IPS), Dr. Lakshman has been active with the society, visited several agricultural institutes in India as a Fulbright Specialist (2013) and as a Borlaug mentor (2016); delivered seminars and workshops, and enthusiastically shared time and expertise with many Indian plant pathologists. He received the USDA-ARS Civil Rights Award, (2011); US President's award for Volunteer Service (2012); Mentor of Borlaug International Fellow (2013-14); Fulbright Specialist (2014), and the IPS “K.C. Mehta and M. Mitra award” (2014).
Dr. Lakshman has been actively involved promoting IPS internationally. He assisted the IPS to augment foreign membership and facilitated signing an MOU between the IPS and the American Phytopathological Society (APS). He delivered an invited lead lecture and chaired a plenary lecture in the 6th International IPS Conference, New Delhi, 2016. He also assisted for the establishment of an APS travel fund to enable IPS-selected graduate students to attend APS meetings, and served in the APS committee member to organize an APS-IPS joint symposium in the 2017 APS meeting.