This webinar will provide an overview of molecular breeding technologies for rice improvement, including next-generation sequencing, marker-assisted breeding, and an in-depth focus on gene editing using CRISPR-Cas technology. After an introduction to the various techniques and their applications in plant breeding, the webinar will delve into the larger questions surrounding gene editing, including key regulatory, intellectual property, and consumer acceptance issues.
Presenter: Michael Thomson is a Professor in the Department Soil and Crop Sciences at Texas A&M University and holder of the H. M. Beachell Endowed Chair in International Rice Improvement. He has a PhD in Plant Breeding from Cornell University, and he spent 10 years at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) leading efforts to deploy high-throughput SNP genotyping for rice improvement. His research focuses on molecular breeding approaches to use natural variation for crop improvement, and he recently established the new Texas A&M AgriLife Research Crop Genome Editing Lab based in College Station. He teaches an undergraduate course on International Agricultural Systems and a graduate course on Genome Editing in Crop Plants.