Laxman Adhikari: Plant Physiology First Author

Laxman Adhikari, first author of “Genetic Characterization and Curation of Diploid A-Genome Wheat Species”

 Current Position: Post-doc Fellow at Center for Desert Agriculture, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (Thuwal, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia).

Education: M.S in Plant and Soil Sciences (Oklahoma State University, USA); Ph.D. in Plant Breeding, Genetics and Genomics (IPBGG, The University of Georgia, USA); Post-doc Fellow at Kansas State University

Non-scientific Interests: Soccer, Basketball, Travelling, Poetry, Watching TV

Brief bio: I have been fascinated by plant breeding, genetics, and genomics studies since my undergraduate degree in Nepal. Soon after I joined Poland Lab at Kansas State University as a Post-doc Fellow in 2019, I started genetic and genomic characterizations of wild wheat accessions maintained in the Wheat Genetics Resource Center gene bank. Genetic characterizations of these natural accessions have great importance as to provide a novel source of variations for breeding and improvement of bread and pasta wheat. Identifying previously untapped genetic variations in wild species can overcome the domestication bottleneck. This study characterized the A-genome diploid relatives of wheat that include T. urartu and two subspecies of T. monococcum. Along with curation of gene bank, we established a representative core set of the collections that can be leveraged as valuable genetic resources. The evolutionary relationships within A-genome diploids and between the diploids and the hexaploid reported here added valuable information to design and execute future plant breeding and genetic studies in these species.