|1990||PhD||Plant Pathology||University of Wisconsin-Madison|
|1982||BS||Biology||Santa Clara University|
Harnessing wild species for crop improvement
Beginning in the early 1990's, along with a small group of colleagues our lab pioneered the use of Medicago truncatula as a model genetic and genomic system for investigation of legume biology. For the past decade we have been a leading lab in the application of basic legume science towards pressing agricultural needs in the developing world. Current research spans model and crop legume systems, with a dual focus on (1) genomics, genetics, biochemistry and cell biology to characterize genes (plants and microbes) governing both pathogenic and beneficial plant-microbe interactions, and (2) ecological genomics and association genetics to understand gene function in complex natural and agricultural legume systems. Currently the lab leads an international consortium focused on the collection and characterization of crop wild relatives (and their microbes) of cultivated chickpea for use in agricultural systems. Work spans ecological genomics through breeding, genomics of domestication, gene identification for agronomic traits, the plant microbiome, and international partnerships for agricultural improvement. At the biological level, we focus on nitrogen fixaiton, drought and heat tolerance, disease resistance and plant growth promoting rhizobacteria.
Department and Center Affiliations
CBS Grad Group Affiliations
Specialties / Focus
- Cell and Developmental Biology
- Plant Breeding
- Systematics and Evolutionary Biology
- Environmental and Integrative Biology
- Model Plants
- Plant Breeding
Graduate Groups not Housed in CBS
Please refer to the Cook Lab website publication page.