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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Weller, David M
Research Plant Pathologist
(509) 335-6210
USDA-ARS, Wheat Health, Genetics, & Quality Res.
Pullman WA 99164

Develop ecologically sound and sustainable methods to achieve, maintain and promote the health of wheat, barley and brassica crops in agricultural systems that conserve soil, water and energy. Promote plant health through the control of soilborne and foliar diseases by conducting and coordinating basic and applied research to understand the genetics and biochemistry of host-pathogen interactions, the composition of the phytobiome, and its role and potential to suppress plant disease through biological control. Develop molecular methods to detect and quantify pathogens, assess their virulence, and determine their etiology, epidemiology and ecology. Forecast epidemics and assess crop losses due to rusts. Develop competitive wheat germplasm with characteristics that minimize risk and maximize sustainable, economic, and health opportunities for cereal breeders, growers, buyers, and consumers. Develop and use molecular, genomic, phenomic and biochemical methods to incorporate desired traits into germplasm including disease resistance, adaptation to environmental stress, and end-use quality traits in market classes desired by foreign and domestic millers, food processors and consumers.

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