Speaker: Fernando de la Torre, Plant and Agroecosystem Sciences
Description: The talk will cover the topic of hybridization within the Vaccinium genus, the history of blueberry and cranberry improvement cycles, as well as what can be expected from ‘blueberry by cranberry’ hybrids by analyzing hybrid fruits and their characteristics. The presentation will feature audience participation, through tasting and describing blueberry and cranberry fruit. Lastly, a few of members of the audience will be asked to try a special Vaccinium hybrid fruit and share their experience with the audience.
Bio: Fernando is currently pursuing his projects on Vaccinium hybridization at the USDA Cranberry Genetics and Genomics Laboratory in Madison, WI under the advisement of Dr. Juan Zalapa. He is a native of San Diego, CA and received his bachelor’s degree from UCLA in Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology. His research training includes being a Genetics Scholar through the Stanford University Summer Research Program, as well as a post-bacc fellowship with the US Forest Service in Davis, CA. He is currently a dissertator in the Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics PhD program at UW-Madison, studying Vaccinium hybrid populations generated by USDA scientists in Wisconsin and New Jersey.
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