- David M. Stelly
- New Beasley Laboratory
- Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1983
- Specialty：Plant Breeding, Genetics, Molecular & Environmental Plant Sciences
Civilization needs plants that are more productive, provide higher quality products, can be produced and processed more economically and ecologically, and enhance our health. To meet these needs, our society needs new methods, knowledge, resources, germplasm, educators and scientists, including breeders, for genetic analysis and genetic improvement of plants.
My aim is to genetically analyze, manipulate and improve plants through integrated research and education. Most of our research involves cotton, a crop of immense importance to Texas, USA and world. Most of the remainder is directed toward improving our "platform" for synthesis of new, extra-ordinarily wide hybrids (intergeneric) of sorghum, the primary aim of which is to create new clonal and seed-based biofuel/feedstock alternatives.
To genetically improve cotton, we aim to better utilize naturally occurring sources of genetic variation, especially the variation among species related to the cultivated cotton species, Gossypium hirsutum (L.). While the ~50 wild species constitute extremely valuable sources of useful genes, perhaps 30,000 to 60,000 per species, there are many "barriers" and difficulties that greatly impede or preclude the recovery and identification of agriculturally useful genetic derivatives from such germplasm. We use a multi-disciplinary approach to define the genetic opportunities and to overcome the barriers, including plant breeding, genomics, cytogenetics, genetics, plant reproductive genetics, biology, pathology, nematology, and entomology.
Research themes supporting the above goals include  interspecific germplasm introgression and breeding,  genomics, marker development and various types of genome mapping, including FISH, RH, linkage, and BAC-based methods,  chromosome manipulations,  ploidy manipulations,  apomixis,  SNP marker development,  marker-based genetic dissection and selection (MAS). Our research entails extensive use of facilities for genomics, microscopy, computation, greenhouse and field-based plant research. Our lab works with many excellent collaborators, local and elsewhere, as our publications well indicate.
Graduate students under my direction can pursue graduate research degrees in any of three graduate programs:  Plant Breeding,  Genetics, or  Molecular & Environmental Plant Sciences. Further information on the programs can be found at the websites for soilcrop.tamu.edu, genetics.tamu.edu and meps.tamu.edu. I also participate in the Professional Program in Biotechnology (PPiB), which offers a hybrid program of biotechnology and business. The requires research experience but not a thesis or dissertation.
- Courses Taught
- GENE 620. Cytogenetics. (3-0). Credit 3.
Examination and analysis of variation in chromosome structure, behavior and number; developmental and evolutionary effects of this variation. Prerequisite: GENE 603.
- BIOT, GENE, MEPS, SCSC 685. Directed Studies. Credit 1 to 4 each semester.
Individual problems or research not pertaining to thesis or dissertation. Prerequisite: Approval of instructor.
- GENE, SCSC, MEPS 691. Graduate research. Individual problems or research p