Consultants | Dr Robert Koebner
Research Career & Highlights
1981-1985 – PhD research
- wheat/rye and wheat/Aegilops umbellulata recombination. The first demonstration that wheat and rye chromosomes could be induced to recombine in the absence of the Ph1 gene, and the pioneering use of marker aided selection.
1986-1990 – The development
- of several biochemical marker systems in wheat, exploiting isoelectric focussing for protein separation. A major outcome was the discovery, validation and delivery to practice of an endopeptidase assay, allowing for the indirect selection of the gene Pch1 (resistance to wheat eyespot), a protocol which was widely used by a number of UK, South African and NW European breeding programmes over the following decade (now largely superceded by DNA methods).
1990-1997 Refining and designing
- DNA-based assays to be informative in wheat and related species. Was part of the team which published the first RFLP-based genetic map of wheat, and pioneered the use of AFLP in wheat.
1996-2000: Explored the genetics of salt tolerance in wheat
- especially sourced from alien species. Showed that chromosomes within homoeologous group 5 are critical for the salt stress response.
2001-2006 Genetic diversity:
Demonstrated that the diversity of the modern winter wheat crop in the UK and NW Europe has not substantially declined over the period since 1950. Established an immortalised EMS mutagenised population of adapted spring wheat, now being widely exploited for TILLing-based gene discovery.