Comparative genomics of plant defense in wild tomatoes
Auditorium A134, Agricultural Technology Building, Agricultural Biotechnology Research Center
2018/06/11 10:30 AM
Dr. David Haak (Assistant Professor of Plant Genomics, Department of Plant Pathology, Physiology, & Weed Science, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA)
Host: Ming-Jung Liu
Food security remains challenging for both developed and developing nations, particularly in light of a changing climate. Plant pathogens alone account for an estimated 10-16% of global harvest losses, add in the additional effects of drought stress and annual crop losses are estimated at hundreds of billions of dollars. One of the greatest barriers to understanding and predicting crop responses to future environmental change is our poor understanding of the functional and genomic basis of resistance traits for contemporary crops. Namely, how do stress response pathways interact to shape organismal fitness. To investigate the genomic basis of stress response pathway interaction and how this impacts organismal fitness, we capitalize on a specialty crop, tomato, which has a wealth of important genomic/genetic tools available and is also a member of a small clade of closely related (inter-fertile) species, facilitating investigations among wild crop relatives. I will characterize molecular differences among distinct genotypes representing an entire clade of ecologically diverse species, using complimentary ‘ecogenomic’ approaches.