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Jason Londo

Research Geneticist (Plants)

Grape Genetics Research Unit


630 W. North St., Geneva, NY  14456

315 787 2463 (office)

315 787 2483 (Fax)


I am a Research Geneticist with the USDA-ARS Grape Genetics Unit, located on the New York State Agriculture Experiment Station in Geneva, New York.  My interests and research program are centered on understanding the genetic and phenotypic aspects of environmental stress tolerance and adaptation. 

Grapevines are cultivated on all of Earth's continents except Antarctica, requiring adaptation to a great diversity of climates.  In New York and the Midwest, cold midwinter temperatures and early spring frosts can damage and kill both grapevine trunk and bud tissue, resulting in loss of productivity in the following growing season.  While cold stress can impact viticulture in the West (e.g. California, Oregon and Washington), drought, salinity, and increasing temperatures tend to play a greater role in reducing grapevine harvests.  As a result of changing and variable climate stresses in traditional grape growing regions, and increased cultivation in more marginal climates, grapevine breeders often attempt to improve grapevine germplasm by breeding the cultivated species of grapevine, Vitis vinifera, with other wild grapevine species.  By drawing on the natural adaptations to challenging climactic conditions that wild species have acquired, new varieties of grapevine can be utilized to face future environmental stresses.  Research in my laboratory is focused on uncovering the physiological and genetic mechanisms that contribute to environmental stress tolerance.  I use experiments designed to examine the genetic differences in traits that contribute to dehydration tolerance, important in surviving low midwinter temperatures, as well as surviving conditions of drought.  The current focus of my research is on understanding the mechanisms that different grapevine species (Vitis sp.) utilize for surviving cold stress.  Specifically, I am interested in understanding how dormant buds survive periods of extreme cold (> -30) during midwinter, as well as survival of growing tissues after sudden spring frosts.  Additionally, studies evaluating and characterizing the physiological mechanisms used by cultivated and wild species of grapevine to survive cold and drought stress are underway.  The goal of this research is to better inform grapevine breeders and farmers about the biological aspects of environmental stress tolerance and aid in the pursuit and utilization of new varieties capable of adapting to environmental stresses in a changing world. 


Professional Experience

Selected Publications

Londo JP, Bollman MA, Sagers CL, Lee EH, Watrud LS. (2011) Changes in fitness-associated traits due to the stacking of transgenic glyphosate resistance and insect resistance in Brassica napus L. Heredity. 107:328-337

Londo JP, Bollman MA, Sagers CL, Lee EH, Watrud LS. (2011) Glyphosate-drift but not herbivory alters the rate of transgene flow from single and stacked trait transgenic canola (Brassica napus) to nontransgenic B. napus and B. rapa. New Phytologist. 191(3):840-849

Schafer MG, Ross AA, Londo JP, Burdick CA, Lee EH, Travers SE, Van de Water PK, and Sagers CL. (2011) The establishment of genetically engineered canola populations in the U.S. PLoS One 6(10):e25736.

Reichman JR, Smith BM, Londo JP, Bollman MA, Auer CA, Watrud LS. (2011) Diallelic nuclear microsatellites for diversity and population analysis of the allotetraploid creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.) Crop Science. 51:747-758

Watrud LS, King G, LondoJP, Colasanti R, Smith BM, Waschmann R, Lee EH. (2011). Changes in constructed Brassica communities under simulated herbicide drift.  Ecological Applications. 21(2):525-538

Londo JP, Bautista NS, Sagers CL , Lee EH , Watrud LS. (2010)  Glyphosate spray drift affects fitness and alters gene flow among transgenic Brassica napus, weedy Brassica rapa, and hybrid generations. Annals of Botany. 106:957-965

Londo JP, Schaal BA. (2007) Origins and population genetics of US weedy red rice. Molecular Ecology Vol. 16 (21) pp 4523-4535 

Londo JP. (2007)Genetic and physiological variation in cultivated and wild rice: Domestication, phylogeography and aluminum stress resistance. Dissertation. Washington University in St. Louis.

Londo JP, Chiang YC, Hung KH, Chiang TY, and Schaal BA. (2006) Phylogeography of Asian wild rice, Oryza rufipogon, reveals multiple independent domestications of cultivated rice, Oryza sativa.  PNAS Vol. 103 (25) pp 9578-9583

Gaskin JF, Ryan FJ, Hrusa GF, Londo JP. (2006) Genotype diversity of Salsola tragus and potential origins of a previously unidentified invasive Salsola from California and Arizona. Madro?o Vol. 53 (3) pp 246-253 

Schaal BA, Bashir A, Jamjod S, Leverich W,Londo JP, Maneechote C, Nirantraiyakun S, Rerkasem B,  Singhal S (2006) Introgression and gene flow in Asian rice.  Proceedings of the 9th International Symposium on Biosafety of Genetically Modified Organisms. South Korea 

Schaal BA, Olsen KM, Londo JP, Chiang TY. (2006) Biodiversity and biotechnology:Crop domestication and the second green revolution. In S Huang (ed.) Biodiversity and Conservation Genetics of Species in Taiwan. Council of Agriculture, Taipei, Taiwan. 

Gaskin JF, Ghadremani-nejad F, Zhang D, and Londo JP.  (2004) A systematic overview of Frankeniaceae and Tamaricaceae from nuclear rDNA and plastid sequence data.  Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden. Vol. 91(3) pp 401-409