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Lisa Ainsworth's Laboratory


Chris Montes

Photo of Chris Montes

Postdoctoral Associate, USDA ARS

Curriculum Vitae




Ph.D, Plant Biology, 2020

University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana

Bachelor of Arts, International Studies, 2009

University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana


Applied Multivariate Statistics (Spring 2016) – Teaching Assistant, Department of Crop Sciences, University of Illinois.

Intro to Applied Statistics (Spring 2017) – Teaching Assistant (designed new laboratory section), Department of Crop Sciences, University of Illinois.


My research identifies traits that can be monitored to identify ozone tolerant varieties of crops and provides a first step in discovering the underlying genetic controls of the intraspecific responses of crops to elevated ozone pollution. Research aims to advance molecular and physiological understanding of crop responses to ozone pollution, identify potential targets for future breeding programs, and promote the use of FACE technology as a method for phenotyping large plant populations and mapping ozone tolerance.


Montes CM (2015) Utilizing a biparental population to understand ozone tolerance and improve soybean productivity. Talk, Global Change and Photosynthesis Research Unit Group Meeting, Urbana, IL.

Montes CM (2016) Introduction to ground-based hyperspectral measurements. Invited talk, EPSCoR – Hyperspectral Workshop, Iowa State University, Ames, IA.

Montes CM (2016) Hands-on, real-world processing. Invited talk, EPSCoR – Hyperspectral Workshop, Iowa State University, Ames, IA.

Montes CM (2017) SoyFACE: A Platform for Improving Crop Response to Global Atmospheric Change. Talk. University of Illinois & Dupont-Pioneer Plant Sciences Symposium, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL.


Meacham-Hensold K, Fu P, Wu J, Serbin S, Montes CM, Ainsworth EA, Guan K, Dracup E, Pederson T, Driever SM, Bernacchi CJ (2020) Plot level rapid screening for photosynthetic parameters using proximal hyperspectral imaging. Journal of Experimental Botany 71, 2312-2328.

Choquette NE, Ogut F, Wertin TM, Montes CM, Sorgini CA, Morse AM, Brown PJ, Leakey ADB, McIntyre LM, Ainsworth EA (2019) Uncovering hidden genetic variation in photosynthesis of field-grown maize under ozone pollution. Global Change Biology 25, 4327-4338.

Meacham-Hensold K, Montes CM, Wu J, Guan K, Ainsworth EA, Pederson T, Moore CE, Brown KL, Raines C, Bernacchi CB (2019) High-throughput field phenotyping using hyperspectral reflectance reveals genetic modifications to photosynthetic capacity. Remote Sensing of the Environment 231, 111176.

Bishop KA*, Lemonnier P*, Quebedeaux JC, Montes CM, Leakey ADB, Ainsworth EA (2018) Similar photosynthetic response to elevated carbon dioxide concentration in species with different phloem loading strategies. Photosynthesis Research 137, 453–464.

Sanz-Sàez A, Koester RP, Rosenthal DM, Montes CM, Ort DR, Ainsworth EA (2017) Leaf and canopy scale drivers of genotypic variation in soybean response to elevated carbon dioxide concentration. Global Change Biology. DOI: 10.111/gcb.13678.

Yendrek CR, Erice G, Montes CM, Tomaz T, Sorgini C, Brown PJ, McIntyre L, Leakey ADB, Ainsworth EA (2017) Elevated ozone accelerates loss of photosynthetic capacity in inbred and hybrid maize in a genotype-specific manner. Plant Cell & Environment. DOI: 10.1111/pce.13075

Yendrek CR, Tomaz T, Montes CM, Cao YY, Morse AM, Brown PJ, McIntyre LM, Leakey ADB, Ainsworth EA (2016) High-throughput phenotyping of maize leaf physiology and biochemistry using hyperspectral reflectance. Plant Physiology. DOI:10.1104/pp.16.01447.