My research goal is to unravel the genetics of flowering time for two ecotypes of switchgrass, which is a potential biofuel. I am especially interested in understanding the mechanisms that drive delayed floral transition in Lowland switchgrass compared to Upland switchgrass. In particular I am looking for structural genomic changes that may underlie divergent flower timing between these two ecotypes. Because late flowering causes switchgrass to be in a vegetative state longer, we hope to research into delayed flowering will inform genetic strategies for producing higher biomass from switchgrass.
1. Odonkor S, Choi S, Chakraborty D, Martinez-Bello L, Wang X, Bahri BA, Tenaillon MI, Panaud O, Devos KM (2018) QTL mapping combined with comparative analyses identified genes for reduced shattering in Setaria italica. Frontiers Plant Science