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Institute of Plant Breeding, Genetics, and Genomics (IPBGG) Joe Bouton, Interim Director University of GeorgiaCollege of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences
A Brief History of “Modern” Plant Breeding at the University of Georgia • 1994 • UGA Research Foundation (UGARF) formalizes the licensing of GAES-developed cultivars • 1995 • UGARF Cultivar Development Grant Program • Uses royalty returns to fund applied cultivar development projects • 11 projects initially funded • Currently > $1.0 million/year + $0.7 million/year to program enhancements
Plant Breeding at UGA • 21 • Faculty in Plant Breeding in CAES at UGA • More than any other US university • ~500 • Cultivars released • Many diverse species • $3,800,000 per year • Annual royalties from UGA-developed cultivars since 2007
Enhancing Infrastructure and Programs • 1997 • UGARF funds Plant Genome Analysis Equipment Grant ($0.75 million) • 1998 • Georgia Research Alliance (GRA) funds UGA Plant and Animal Genomics Initiative ($27 million) • 2001 • Center for Applied Genetic Technologies (CAGT) Building completed • 2003 • GA Seed Development Commission and GRA endow Eminent Scholar in Crop Genomics ($1.5 million) • 2005 • Michael A. Dirr Professorship (HORT) • 2007 • Vincent J. Dooley Professorship (HORT)
Formation of the InstituteResponse to need for breeders & strong support from state and national seed companies • 2006 • USDA designates Plant Breeding, Genetics & Genomics as a ‘National Needs’ area • 2008 – Spring • Board of Reagents approve Institute of Plant Breeding, Genetics, and Genomics– officially begins 1 July 2008. (Jerry Cherry and Roger Boerma) • 2008 – Fall • BOR approves MS and PhD programs in Plant Breeding, Genetics, and Genomics (David Knauft) • 2010 – Summer • PBGG course designation obtained • Have 16 PBGG courses
UGA/CAES Institute of Plant Breeding, Genetics and Genomics • Missions • To develop improved plant cultivars (varieties) from agronomic and horticultural species of importance to Georgia, the United States, and worldwide. • To conduct research and train graduate students in modern plant breeding methodology and technique – including applying genetic and genomic tools to cultivar (variety) development.
Institute of Plant Breeding * • Only Institute in the College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences • 19 Graduate Faculty from:Crop & Soil Sciences andHorticulture • Athens, Griffin, & Tifton Campuses • 6 Adjunct members &Affiliate members • (including USDA-ARS) * *
Organizational Information • Director (Interim) • Joe Bouton • Steering Committee • David Knauft, Brian Schwartz, Paul Raymer • Graduate Coordinator • Dayton Wilde • Administrative Assistant • Sally McDonald
The UGA Institute of Plant Breeding, Genetics, and Genomics • We define success as • Benefitting our clientele by providing improved plant cultivars for licensing • Enhancing the teaching mission of UGA by educating and training the next generation of plant breeders and plant geneticists • Accelerating the rate of genetic gain in plants • Establishing an “Area of Excellence” at UGA/CAES/CRSS/HORT for the future • Maintaining or increasing the capacity for plant breeding at UGA
IPBGG Supporters • Strong support from many groups – especially • GA Crop Improvement Association • GA Seed Development Commission • GA Seedsmen Association • UGARF
Graduate Degree Programs • Institute is attracting very high quality applicants • Currently 10 M.S. students and 13 Ph.D. students • First 5 students graduated in spring 2009 • 9 graduated since then • Most students have jobs months before graduating • Starting salary ~$90K • More jobs than students
Undergraduate Programs • Lack of undergraduate program • Major gap/deficiency • 2 Georgia Seed Development Internships • Undergraduate research training in individual programs • Would like to be involved with the undergraduate Applied Biotechnology major • Great feeder program for graduate school in PBGG
Future Challenges • Retain faculty positions as breeders retire or move • Boerma, Brummer, Dirr & Johnson • Research farm availability • Greenhouse space • Maintain Cultivar Development Grant Program • Increase student numbers, particularly at Griffin and Tifton • Increase assistantships for students • Applicant number exceeds assistantship availability