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Michael Thomson

Thomson, Michael
Michael Thomson
343C Heep Center
Ph.D. in Plant Breeding, Cornell University 2002

Specialty:Beachell Chair, Rice Genomics and Genetics

Research. My research focuses on plant molecular genetics with an emphasis on rice genetics and genomics, molecular breeding, and international agriculture. My primary interest is to help bridge the gap between exploring genetic diversity held in crop gene banks with practical use in plant breeding programs to accelerate rice improvement. Research activities include genome editing with CRISPR/Cas9, characterizing SNP haplotypes using whole genome sequence data, developing functional markers, and exploring methods to increase the rate of genetic gain in rice breeding programs. My program is based in College Station, but I work closely with rice scientists in the Texas A&M AgriLife Research Center in Beaumont, Texas and collaborators around the world. My goal is to rapidly apply new genetics discoveries to rice improvement to help Texas producers and rice farmers around the world produce higher yields of superior quality rice in an environmentally sustainable manner.
Crop Genome Editing website: https://agrilife.org/cgel/

Teaching. I currently teach an upper-level course on International Agriculture Systems (SCSC410) and a graduate-level special topics course (SCSC-689) on Genome Editing in Crop Plants.

Support Staff and Students

Tia Dunbar | Oneida Ibarra | Leonard Herndon | A S M Faridul Islam | Marco Molina | Sejuti Mondal | Karina Morales | Nithya Subramanian | Nikolaos Tsakirpaloglou | Stephon Warren | Nancy Wahl

Courses Taught
SCSC 410. International Agricultural Systems (3-0) Credits: 3 Contrast modern agriculture systems with those in developing countries; emphasis on natural resources and technologies interacting with economic and social development on a global scale. Prerequisites: Junior or senior classification, or approval of instructor.
SCSC 689. Special Topics: Genome Editing in Crop Plants (2-0) Credits: 2 Principles of genome editing technologies with a focus on CRISPR/Cas9; applications of genome editing for plant genetic research and improvement of agronomic crops; intellectual property, regulatory, social and ethical implications of crop genome editing. Prerequisites: Graduate classification or approval of instructor.