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Former Graduate Students

Yufan Zhang    

Degree: Ph.D. in Plant Biology  2014 
Thesis: Functional genomics of  Theobroma cacao fatty acid biosynthesis: Convergence of fatty acid desaturation, embryo development, and defense signaling responses
Current Position: Postdoctoral Scholar, Princeton Univ.
Email: foreverkobe.zyf@gmail.com

Zi Shi    

Degree: Ph.D. in Plant Biology  2010
Thesis: Functional  analysis  of  Non  Expressor  of  pr1  (NPR1)  and  its  paralog  NPR3 in  Theobroma  cacao  and  Arabidopsis  thaliana
Current Position: Scientist: Beijing Academy of Agricultural and Forestry Science
Email: shizi_520@msn.com

  

Rachel Melnick

Degree: Ph.D. in Plant Pathology 2010
Current Position: National Program Leader directing competitive grant programs in the area of agroclimatology; agency representative to the USDA Regional Climate hub Executive Council; and USDA representative to the HABHRCA interagency working group. 
Email: RMelnick@nifa.usda.gov (2010)

Yi Liu

Degree: Ph.D. in Integrated Biological Sciences   2010

Current Position: Postdoctoral Scholar, Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, University of California, San Francisco     

Carter Miller

Degree: Ph.D. in Integrated Biological Sciences  2009
Thesis:  AN INTEGRATED IN VITRO AND GREENHOUSE ORTHOTROPIC CLONAL PROPAGATION SYSTEM FOR THEOBROMA CACAO L.
Email: carter.r.miller@uol.com.br (2010)

Huan Xia

Degree: Ph.D. in Integrated Biological Sciences  2009     
Thesis: STRUCTURE AND FUNCTION OF ENDOSPERM STARCH FROM MAIZE MUTANTS DEFICIENT IN ONE OR MORE STARCH-BRANCHING ENZYME ISOFORM ACTIVITIES
Current Position: Product Process Scientist R&D; MARS PETCARE US;T:  615-807-4234; Fax:  615-458-2743 (2010)
Eaail: Huan.Xia@effem.com

J.P. Marelli

Degree: Ph.D. Integrated Biological Sciences  2008
Thesis: Solanum lycopersicum as a model system to study pathogenicity mechanisms of Moniliophthora perniciosa, the causal agent of witches' broom disease of Theobroma cacao   Current Position: Cocoa Physiologist; Mars Center For Cocoa Science; T: 55 73 3214-7906; M:  55 9116-3587; Fax:  55 73 3214-7905 (2010)   
Email: jean-philippe.marelli@effem.com

J.D. Swanson

Degree: Ph.D. 2005
Thesis: Flower development in Theobroma cacao L.: An assessment of morphological and molecular conservation of floral development between Arabidopsis thaliana and Theobroma cacao
Current Position: 

Professor of Biology and Class Dean, Department of Biology and Biomedical Sciences, Salve Regina University, 100 Ochre Point Ave, Newport RI 02840


Email: jswanson@uca.edu

Gabriela Antunez De Mayolo

Degree: Ph.D.  Integrated Life Sciences  2003
Thesis: Genetic engineering of Theobroma cacao and molecular studies on cacao defense responses
Current Position: Greifswald University (2010) 

Melis Cakirer

Degree: B.S. and M.S.  Food Sciences  2003
Thesis: Color as an indicator of flavanol content in the fresh seeds of Theobroma cacao L
Current Position: Colgate-Palmolive Company; 909 River Road, Piscataway, NJ  08855-1343 (2010)
email: melis_cakirer@colpal.com

Jennifer Umphress

Degree: Ph.D.  Plant Physiology 2001
Thesis: Phosphorus stress response in Arabidopsis
Current Position: Monsanto Corp   (2010)

Abdoulaye Traore

Degree: Ph.D. Food Science  1999
Thesis: Tissue culture and Transformation of cacao
Current Position: Process & Product Development Scientist; Mars Chocolate US-ELZ T:  717-367-0991; M:  717-538-4983; Fax:  717-361-4608 (2010)
email: abdoulaye.traore@effem.com

Kyung-Nam Kim

Degree: Ph.D. Plant Physiology  1997
Thesis: Isolation and promoter analysis of the genes for starch branching enzyme in maize    2010                           

Current Position: Associate Professor, Dept. Of Molecular Biology, Sejong University    knkim@sejong.ac.kr

Ming Gao

Degree: Ph.D. Plant Physiology 1996
Thesis: Molecular characterization of starch branching enzyme genes, SbeI, Sbe2b and Sbe2a in maize (Zea mays L.)
Current Position: Plant Biiotechnology Institute, NRC, Saskatoon  (2010)

Siela Maximova

Degree: Ph.D. Plant Physiology  1996
Thesis: Development of a genetic transformation system for apple
Current Position: Senior Scientist and Professor of Horticulture, Penn State University, Dept. of Plant Science 
Email: snm104@psu.edu

Dane Fisher

Degree: Ph.D. Genetics 1995
Thesis: Molecular genetic analysis of multiple isoforms of starch branching enzyme with emphasis on Zea mays L.
Current Position: Pfeiffer University, NC (2010) 

Xiping Niu

Degree: Ph.D. Plant Physiology  1995
Thesis: DNA binding specificity and interactions with nucleosomal DNA of the plant bZip protein EmBP-1
Current Position: Pionneer Hi-Bred International (2010)

Sashi Prabhakar

Degree: M.S. Plant Physiology 1995
Thesis: cDNA cloning and characterization of a EmBP-1 homologue in maize (Zea mays):  A basic leucine zipper transcription factor
Current Position: Sr. Analyst Application Svcs, Merck Research Labs   

Charlene Chang

Degree: M.S. Plant Physiology 1993    
Thesis: Optimization of in vitro regeneration of geranium (Pelargonium xhortorum L.H. Bailey) for development of a genetic transformation system