Team Wilhelm Gruissem

  • Wilhelm Gruissem

    Prof. Dr.

    Wilhelm Gruissem is Professor at ETH Zurich (Switzerland) and Chair Professor and Yu-shan Fellow at National Chung Hsing University (Taiwan). He is leading research groups at both universities to improve the nutritional qualities and …

  • Anjanappa Ravi Bodampalli

    Dr.

    Dr. Ravi Bodampalli Anjanappa is a senior assistant with Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Gruissem, Plant Biotechnology group, Institute of Plant Molecular Biology, ETH Zurich. He holds a BSc (Agriculture) and a MSc (Plant Biotechnology)

  • Pascal Schläpfer

    Dr.

    Text to come

  • Shu-Heng Chang

    Dr.

    Shu-Heng Chang is a postdoctoral fellow in Advanced Plant Biotechnology Center at National Chung Hsing University, Taiwan. During his doctoral studying in Institute of Biochemistry at NCHU, he focused on an unculturable and …

Wilhelm Gruissem

Prof. Dr.

Wilhelm Gruissem is Professor at ETH Zurich (Switzerland) and Chair Professor and Yu-shan Fellow at National Chung Hsing University (Taiwan). He is leading research groups at both universities to improve the nutritional qualities and agronomic traits in cassava and rice. Major crops such as maize, wheat, rice, potato and cassava are rich in starch and together they provide more than 85% of the carbohydrate calories consumed worldwide. People for whom these crops are the primary staple food receive enough calories but they are often malnourished because the seeds, tubers and roots of these plants do not contain enough of the necessary vitamins and minerals such as iron for a healthy diet. For example, 1.6 billion people worldwide suffer reduced productive capacity due to iron-deficiency anemia. Utilizing the genetic potential of the diversity available in seed banks around the world for crop improvement is often not possible because high micronutrient target traits are not available in breeding germplasm. His groups use genetic engineering and new breeding technologies to increase the micronutrient and vitamin content of rice and cassava, which would not be possible by conventional breeding. They achieved more than 10-fold increases in iron and zinc content over levels typically present in polished rice grains, approaching the estimated average requirement (EAR) for human nutrition. Engineering key steps of vitamin B6 biosynthesis increases bioavailable vitamin B6 content in cassava storage roots and leaves to EAR levels. Combining genes for micronutrient improvement and other agronomic traits into novel single-locus traits will facilitate breeding in these two major staple crops.

Agronomic and micronutrient trait improvement | Cassava | Rice

Team

Anjanappa Ravi Bodampalli

Dr.

Dr. Ravi Bodampalli Anjanappa is a senior assistant with Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Gruissem, Plant Biotechnology group, Institute of Plant Molecular Biology, ETH Zurich. He holds a BSc (Agriculture) and a MSc (Plant Biotechnology) from the University of Agriculture Sciences, Bangalore, India. He obtained his PhD from the Plant Biotechnology, Department of Biology, ETHZ Zurich, Switzerland. During his PhD, he identified cassava varieties that are resistant to cassava brown streak viruses (CBSVs), and characterized the transcriptome response at an early time point of CBSVs infection to identify virus-host interactions. Ravi is an expert in plant tissue culture and leads the high-throughput cassava transformation pipeline. Besides his interests in producing larger storage roots of cassava, he has an interest in improving carbohydrate storage capacity and increase nutritional value.

Pascal Schläpfer

Dr.

Text to come

Shu-Heng Chang

Dr.

Shu-Heng Chang is a postdoctoral fellow in Advanced Plant Biotechnology Center at National Chung Hsing University, Taiwan. During his doctoral studying in Institute of Biochemistry at NCHU, he focused on an unculturable and phloem sapping plant pathogen, phytoplasma. He found that the phytoplasma secreted protein, SAP11, is able to alter the plant architecture and phase transition. After graduation, he joined Professor Wilhelm Gruissem laboratory in Taiwan, as a laboratory manager and postdoctoral fellow. Rice and cassava, two of the most improtant major staple food crops worldwide providing carbohydrate and a wide range of nutrients. To meet future food demand of the growing world population, higher yield and nutritious crops are required. Dr. Chang conduct the field trial of iron and zinc biofortication rice and Cassava Source-Sink (CASS) project source-to-sink improvement transgenic cassava plants in NCHU Agricultural Experiment Station. Promising transgenic rice and cassava established by genetic engineering and new breeding technologies were selected to growth under field conditions.