Saarah Kuzay, Ph.D.

Saarah Kuzay

Position Title
Jorge Dubcovsky Lab

Plant Sciences


Small grains/Agronomy: Wheat

Keywords: Plant Breeding/Genetics/Crop Improvement, positional cloning, agronomic crop production, vegetable breeding

Research for my Ph.D. under Jorge Dubcovsky focuses on understanding the genetic basis of the number of spikelets per spike (SPS) in wheat, a yield component trait for pasta and bread wheat. More specifically, I am using positional cloning to dissect the quantitative trait loci for a number of spikelets per spike (SPS) located on chromosome arm 7AL (160-165 Mb). Ultimately, I hope to use positional cloning to isolate this gene for SPS and deploy it in the UC Davis and CYMMIT wheat breeding programs. Outside of my thesis research, I am also working with SCOPE (Student Collaborative Organic Plant-Breeding and Education) to breed jalapeño and bell peppers for organic farming systems under Allen Van Deynze and Charles Brummer.