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Daniel Restrepo Montoya Defends Ph.D. Thesis

Daniel Restrepo Montoya defended his Genomics and Bioinformatics Ph.D. thesis, “Computational Identification, Phylogenetic and Synteny Analysis of Receptor-Like Kinases “RLK” and Receptor-Like Proteins “RLP” in Legumes”, October 18, 2018 and presented a seminar on his research.
Daniel Restrepo Montoya Defends Ph.D. Thesis

From left: Phil McClean, Daniel Restrepo Montoya, Juan Osorno

November 14, 2018

Daniel Restrepo Montoya defended his Genomics and Bioinformatics Ph.D. thesis, “Computational Identification, Phylogenetic and Synteny Analysis of Receptor-Like Kinases “RLK” and Receptor-Like Proteins “RLP” in Legumes”, October 18, 2018 and presented a seminar on his research. His advisors are Juan Osorno, associate professor and dry bean breeder, and Phil McClean, professor and director of the genomics and bioinformatics program.

He analyzed Receptor-Like Kinases “RLK” and Receptor-Like Proteins “RLP” in 10 species; seven legumes such as common bean and soybean, and three non-legume such as common grape and tomato. RLK and RLP are plasma membrane receptors present in all plants and are involved in multiple biological functions like plant immunity, growth, development, and symbiosis, among others. To complete the analysis, he used a comparative genomic approach to computationally classify RLK/RLP and build a gene/protein catalog, as well as evaluate orthology and synteny. The computational approach is statistically well supported and can be used in other plants.

Restrepo Montoya, who is from Colombia, earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, and his Master of Engineering in Computer Science from Universidad Nacional de Colombia, both in Bogota, Colombia. He was awarded a Francisco José de Caldas Scholarship by his home country to pursue doctoral studies in the United States.

Restrepo Montoya is also a Fulbright Scholar and chose North Dakota State University based on the recommendation of the Fulbright Program. “The department is full of possibilities and the professors are open to discuss research projects,” he says. He was inducted into Gamma Sigma Delta, The Honor Society of Agriculture, at NDSU in 2016.

After completing his Ph.D. in December, Restrepo Montoya will begin a postdoctoral position as a bioinformatician at North Carolina State University.

His graduate committee included Dr. Julia Bowsher, biological sciences, and Dr. Robert Brueggeman plant pathology.

Author: Kamie Beeson, 701-231-7123,
Editor: Karen Hertsgaard, 701-231-5384,

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