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Publications in VIVO

Siritunga, Dimuth



My interests are in the field of plant/crop genetics and biotechnology. I am interested in using modern tools in molecular biology to genetically engineer desirable traits to orphan crop and have been involved in such projects since my days in graduate school. My lab has conducted work on transgenic crops such as cassava, sweet potato and lima beans on projects funded by the Gates Foundation since 2006. More recently I have also been interested in gauging the genetic diversity of crops in Puerto Rico having so far completed cassava, lima beans, papaya and sweet potato. Currently, we are analyzing the genetic diversity of Solanaceae  and Bambusa species in Puerto Rico through a project funded by USDA. As an academic I am very interested in exploring novel ways to educate our future generation of scientists and thus have been involved in many projects focusing on establishing lab-modules in key courses in the biology curriculum that are research oriented. Such projects, funded by HHMI and NSF, have implemented research –oriented laboratory modules that continue to impact 600+ minority undergraduate per year. During my tenure as a PI our lab has had 52 undergraduate students and 12 master’s students, of whom approx. 70% have continue on to a PhD or MD degrees.