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Morgan Echeverry-Solarte Completes Ph.D. in Plant Sciences

Echeverry-Solarte’s wheat research focused on determining the genetic basis of supernumerary spikelets (SS) in common wheat at whole genome scale using a genetic linkage map of one wheat population. He has a position as a Tomato Breeder with Bayer CropScience’s vegetable seed affiliate, Nunhems, in Mexico.
Morgan Echeverry-Solarte Completes Ph.D. in Plant Sciences

Morgan Echeverry-Solarte (left) with adviser Dr. Mohamed Mergoum

Morgan Echeverry-Solarte Dissertation Video

Morgan Echeverry-Solarte, Ph.D. graduate in Plant Sciences at North Dakota State University, presented Uncovering the Genetic Basis and Character Association of Wheat Spike-Related, Agronomic, and Quality Traits on Friday, April 4, 2014. The seminar provided a synopsis of Echeverry-Solarte’s wheat research determining the genetic basis of supernumerary spikelets (SS) in common wheat at whole genome scale using a genetic linkage map of one wheat population.

SS is a promissory trait to increase yield potential in wheat. He investigated the influence of this trait on 10 spike-related, 10 agronomic, and eight quality traits in wheat at the phenotypic and DNA levels. The potential use of germplasm with SS trait improving wheat quality attributes was also demonstrated in his research. The research determined Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL), which will be useful for marker assisted selection and to enrich the genetic diversity of the Hard Red Spring Wheat Program at NDSU.

Hailing from Cali, Columbia, Echeverry-Solarte received his M.S. in Biology at the University of Puerto Rico before coming to NDSU. While here, he was honored with the Luwbia Aranda Rocha Memorial Scholarship (2010, 2012) and the Charles and Linda Moses Presidential Graduate Fellowship Scholarship (2011, 2013). He also served as secretary of the Plant Sciences Graduate Student Association in 2012.

When asked why he chose NDSU, Morgan said, “NDSU gave me the opportunity to obtain the best education in the world as a plant breeder and geneticist. The Department of Plant Sciences has a unique program that combines the best of classical breeding and modern genetics.”

Echeverry-Solarte has accepted a position as a Tomato Breeder with Bayer CropScience’s vegetable seed affiliate, Nunhems, in Mexico.

Echeverry-Solarte’s graduate committee included Dr. Elias Elias, Dr. Phil McClean, Dr. Edward Deckard, Dr. Mohamed Alamri, and Dr. Jack Rasmussen. His adviser was Dr. Mohamed Mergoum.

Source: Morgan Echeverry-Solarte (contact Dr. Mohamed Mergoum, 701-231-8478, mohamed.mergoum@ndsu.edu )
Author: Shannon Ueker, 701-231-7971, shannon.ueker@ndsu.edu
Editor: Karen Hertsgaard, 701-231-5384, karen.hertsgaard@ndsu.edu

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