Lisa

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Lisa
Ainsworth
WORK
Global Change & Photosynthesis Research

Her research aims to improve crop responses to global atmospheric change, including rising atmospheric carbon dioxide & ozone pollution.

Julia

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Julia
Bailey-Serres
WORK
Center for Plant Cell Biology

Julia Bailey-Serres is a plant biologist known for her research on mechanisms of plant adaptive responses to environmental stresses.

Edward

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Edward S.
Buckler
WORK
Cornell University

His group’s research uses genomic, computational, and field approaches to dissect complex traits and accelerate breeding in maize, sorghum, cassava, and a wide range of other crops.

Joanne

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Joanne
Chory
WORK
Plant Biology Laboratory

Joanne Chory is a Howard Hughes Medical Investigator, Co-director of the Harnessing Plants Initiative at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and the Howard H. and Maryam R. Newman Chair in Plant Biology.

Mark

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Mark
Cooper
WORK
The University of Queensland

Professor Mark Cooper is a global leader in quantitative genetics and plant breeding. His work involves integrating genomic prediction and crop growth models into an ‘end to end’ framework for crop improvement.

Dr. Segenet

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Dr. Segenet
Kelemu
WORK
International Centre of Insect Physiology & Ecology

Dr. Kelemu is a 2014 L’Oréal-UNESCO Laureate for Women in Science Awards.

Zach Lippman

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Zach
Lippman
WORK
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

His research group integrates genetics, development, genomics, and genome editing to study flowering and flower production in nature and agriculture.

Dr. Daniela

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Daniela
Lourenco
WORK
University of Georgia

Her current interests include the use of genomic information to increase rates of genetic progress, the development of methods for genomic evaluations, and the use of computational algorithms to analyze large data.

Dr. Adam

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Dr. Adam
Phillippy
WORK
National Human Genome Research Institute

Dr. Adam Phillippy is a Senior Investigator and head of the Genome Informatics Section at the NHGRI.

Nils Stein

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Nils
Stein
WORK
Research Leader at Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research & Professor at Georg-August University Göttingen

his research focuses on structural and comparative genome analysis of the small grain cereals barley, wheat and rye –with a leading role in genome sequencing of all three species.

Naomi

AGRICULTURAL MEETING PREVIOUS SPEAKER

Naomi
Wray
WORK
The University of Queensland

She is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences.

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2024 Featured Speakers

Cathie Martin

John Innes Centre

Professor Cathie Martin is a Group Leader at the John Innes Centre and Fellow of the Royal Society. research interests lie in using plant science to improve human diet and health. She is particularly interested in biofortification and using plant metabolic engineering to enhance foods nutritionally. Much of Cathie’s work has been undertaken in tomatoes, enriching their nutrient content with, for example, resveratrol and anthocyanin. Cathie collaborates to test these enhanced foods in intervention studies and also undertakes studies into how these modified fruits have improved shelf-life and reduced susceptibility to grey mould, Botrytis cinerea. Biofortification of fruit and vegetables for human […]

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Charlie Messina

Charlie Messina (PhD, University of Florida) is Professor in the Department of Horticultural Sciences at the University of Florida. His teaching and research program focuses on how to harmonize crop improvement and AI efforts for agricultural systems to regenerate the environment while providing nutrition security, improve human health and adapt to climate change. He leads a team that develops prediction methods by harnessing principles of crop science, dynamical systems modeling (symbolic AI), statistical learning (sub-symbolic AI) and complex systems theory. He collaborates with breeders, engineers, and agronomists to co-create systems within operational breeding programs.

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Damaris Odeny

International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT)

Damaris Odeny is a plant molecular breeder with global research experience cutting across Africa, Asia, Europe and USA. She has led and implemented genomics projects in both cereals and legumes, including the development of genomic resources in several orphan crops. Damaris works closely with other disciplines from national, private and international institutes to develop cutting edge genomic resources for all ICRISAT mandate crops (sorghum, pearl and finger millet, groundnut, chickpea and pigeonpea) in her current role. Prior to this, she worked as a senior researcher at the Agricultural Research Council (ARC), South Africa, where she played a key role in […]

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Diane Saunders

John Innes Centre

Professor Diane Suanders is the Head of the Department and Group Leader Delivering Sustainable Wheat (DSW), and Advancing Plant Health (APH).  Diane’s research focuses on (re-)emerging plant pathogens that pose a significant threat to agriculture. She has a particular interest in the wheat rust pathogens, which are known as the “polio of agriculture” due to the threat they pose to wheat production worldwide. This includes numerous projects studying the wheat yellow rust pathogen, Puccinia striiformis f.sp tritici that recently re-emerged as a major constraint on UK agriculture. In Diane’s lab, they use an array of different approaches to study plant pathogens to improve our […]

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Dr. Mike Gore

Dr. Mike Gore is a professor of molecular breeding and genetics for nutritional quality, Liberty Hyde Bailey professor, and Chair of the Plant Breeding and Genetics Section in the School of Integrative Plant Science at Cornell University. Mike is also the Associate Director for Research Partnerships in CROPPS, the Center for Research on Programmable Plant Systems. He holds a BS and MS from Virginia Tech and a PhD from Cornell University. His expertise is in the field of quantitative genetics and genomics, especially the genetic dissection of metabolic seed traits related to nutritional quality. Additionally, Mike is a pioneer in […]

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Eric Psota

Eric Psota is the Digital Innovation Manager at PIC North America. Since joining in 2021, he has been responsible for developing advanced technologies for digital phenotyping using computer vision and machine learning. Specifically, he specializes in multi-object tracking, pose estimation, animal identification, anomaly detection, real-time systems, and edge computing. Prior to joining PIC, he was a researcher at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he remains on the faculty as an adjunct professor.

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Erica McGale

Erica McGale is a postdoctoral researcher in the group of Professor Ian Sanders at the University of Lausanne, and will be attending on behalf of Ian to share the current and upcoming work of the Sanders group. This includes field work coordinated with collaborators in Colombia. Erica received a PhD from the Max Planck of Chemical Ecology (Friedrich-Schiller-Universität) in 2020 on population-scale effects of single gene manipulation. During their PhD and since, Erica has worked with forward genetics techniques, specifically, quantitative genetic association analyses, to pinpoint genetic locations in single plant and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) species that are linked […]

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Ermias Kebreab

Ermias Kebreab is Associate Dean and Professor of Animal Science at the University of California, Davis. He holds the Sesnon Endowed Chair in Sustainable Agriculture. He conducts research in animal nutrition, mathematical modeling of biological systems and impact of livestock on the environment. He is contributing author to 2019 IPCC update on enteric methane emissions. He co-chaired the feed additive and methane committees of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN. He has authored over 250 peer-reviewed articles and received several awards including Excellence in Ruminant Nutrition and International Agriculture from American Society of Animal Science, and 2022 Chancellor’s […]

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Ben Hayes

Professor Hayes has extensive research experience in genetic improvement of livestock, crop, pasture and aquaculture species, with a focus on integration of genomic information into breeding programs, including leading many large scale projects which have successfully implemented genomic technologies in livestock and cropping industries. Author of more than 250 journal papers, including in Nature Genetics, Nature Reviews Genetics, and Science, contributing to statistical methodology for genomic, microbiome and metagenomic profile predictions, quantitative genetics including knowledge of genetic mechanisms underlying complex traits, and development of bioinformatics pipelines for sequence analysis. Thomson Reuters highly cited researcher in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.

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Geoff Morris

Colorado State University

Geoff Morris is an associate professor for Crop Genetics & Genomics at Colorado State University.  The goal of his  research program is to better understand the genomic basis of adaptation in crops and wild relatives. Through this he aims to gain insight on some fundamental mechanisms of crop adaptation and facilitate improvement of crop adaptive traits.

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Howard Shapiro

Agricultural Sustainability Institute, University of California, Davis

Howard has been involved with sustainable agricultural and agroforestry systems, pattern recognition, plant breeding, molecular biology and genetics for over 40 years releasing hundreds of cultivars into the public domain. He has worked with indigenous communities, NGO’s, governmental agencies and the private sector around the world. A former university professor for 15 years, Fulbright Scholar, Ford Foundation Fellow, in 2007 Howard was made a Fellow of the World Agroforestry Centre and authored the IAASTD chapter on Biotechnology and Biodiversity. He was a founding member of the Keystone Roundtable on Sustainable Agriculture, co-chair of the 1st and 2nd World Congress of […]

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Mario Calus

Mario Calus is an associate professor at the Animal Breeding and Genomics group of Wageningen University. He obtained both his MSc and PhD degree from Wageningen University. His main area of expertise is on genomic prediction and genomic selection, with an increasing focus on the use of functional annotations and intermediate omics data. He has more than seventeen years of experience in the scientific development of genomic selection, and its implementation in collaboration with the breeding industry, in recent years through the Dutch public-private partnership Breed4Food. He currently is the program leader of Breed4Food. He has supervised 11 PhD students, […]

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Nathan Springer

Nathan Springer received a PhD from the University of Minnesota in 2000 and his thesis research in Dr. Ron Phillips lab involved cloning of DNA methyltransferases from maize and analysis of anueploid-induced syndromes.  Nathan was a post-doctoral research in Shawn Kaeppler’s group at the University of Wisconsin-Madison working on functional genomics of maize chromatin.  He joined the faculty in the Department of Plant and Microbial Biology at the University of Minnesota in 2003.  Members of the Springer lab applied classical genetic, molecular genetic and genomic approaches to study natural variation for gene expression and chromatin in maize and have published […]

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Prof. Giles E. D. Oldroyd FRS, FRSB

Giles Oldroyd studies the mechanisms by which plants form beneficial interactions with micro-organisms, both bacteria and fungi, that aid in the uptake of nutrients from the environment, including nitrogen. A long-term aim of this research is to reduce agricultural reliance on inorganic fertilisers and he currently heads an international programme funded by Bill & Melinda Gates Agricultural Innovations. He completed his PhD in 1998 at the University of California, Berkeley, studying plant-pathogen interactions and then moved to Stanford University, USA, to work on nitrogen fixation in the laboratory of Prof. Sharon Long. After working 15 years as a group leader […]

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Ross Houston

Prof Ross Houston is Director of Genetics and Innovation at Benchmark Holdings. Benchmark is a leading aquaculture biotechnology company focused on products and solutions that improve farming efficiency and animal health. There he leads Benchmark Genetics’ global breeding programs for Atlantic salmon and whiteleg shrimp, as well as R&D activities, with a particular focus on applications of emerging technologies, including reproductive technologies and gene editing. He is also Chair of Benchmark Innovation Board, which fosters exploitation of synergies across the Genetics, Health, and Advanced Nutrition business units. Ross has over 20 years of experience in applied genetics research in animal […]

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Sam Oyola

Samuel Oyola is a senior Scientist at ILRI and head of GenomicScience. Samuel specializes in Genomics and Molecular Biology. He holds a PhD in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Cambridge, UK. Before joining ILRI, he studied functional genomics of Leishmaniasis and host-parasite interaction as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of York, UK. He then took a Scientist position at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Cambridge UK, where he worked on malaria; developing and applying high throughput genomic technologies to study natural genetic variations in malaria parasite populations. He developed novel molecular tools that enable application and translation of genomic technologies into basic […]

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Xuelu Wang

Henan University

Professor Xuelu Wang has long been engaged in the study of microbial interaction, biological nitrogen fixation, leguminous biology and plant hormone signal transduction networks and their mechanisms of regulating growth and development. He has published many important research papers and been cited more than 3,000 times. These research results have important biological significance and also provide important theoretical foundations and innovative methods for the development of green agriculture. At the same time, he has presided over projects of Outstanding Youth Fund, key fund, international cooperation and major research program integration fund, which are all supported by National Natural Science Foundation […]

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Elinor Karlsson, PhD

Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard

Elinor Karlsson, PhD, is associate professor in Bioinformatics and Integrative Biology at the UMass Chan Medical School, and director of Vertebrate Genomics at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. Her research combines new technology, community science and genomics to investigate diseases and discover the origins of exceptional mammalian traits.  Dr. Karlsson’s research includes the Zoonomia project, an international effort to compare the genomes of over 240 mammals (from the African Yellow-spotted Rock Hyrax to the Woodland Dormouse), to identify segments of DNA that are important for survival and health.  Dr. Karlsson has a special interest in dog genetics, and […]

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