CucCAP scientists Zhangjun Fei, Shaker Kousik, Cecilia McGregor, Umesh K. Reddy, and Yiqun Weng are on the Scientific committee of the VII International Symposium on Cucurbits. Their specialties include watermelon, cucumber, and genomics.
Reddy Lab @ WVSU
CucCAP Squash Team | Research Publications
The CucCAP squash team published 6 journal articles in 2022 & 2023, 7 journal articles in 2021, and 5 journal articles in 2020.
CucCAP Melon Team | Research Publications
The CucCAP Melon breeding, genomics, and pathology group published 11 journal articles and book chapters between September 2020 and April 2023.
CucCAP researchers assemble genomic tools to study the development of giant pumpkin fruit
Cucurbit fruits come in different shapes and sizes, controlled by genes underlying cell size and number. In a recent study, a team at West Virginia State University (WVSU) identified genetic factors underlying the giant fruit size of the mammoth group of Cucurbita maxima. The study elucidated genome diversity and identified single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers associated with genes controlling fruit size. In addition to the genomic toolkit useful for breeding programs aiming at pumpkin fruit traits, this study provides insight into population differentiation and evolutionary origins of rare variants contributing to the giant fruit size of certain pumpkin varieties.
2021 CucCAP Watermelon Team Publications and Presentations
Watermelon Breeding, Genetics, Genomics, Pathology, and Disease Management Publications & Presentations
CucCAP researchers genetically characterize more than 2000 melon accessions in the U.S. National Plant Germplasm System
The U.S. National Plant Germplasm System maintains a melon germplasm collection from worldwide melon production areas and regions where primitive melons exist. The CucCAP team genetically characterized the collection to increase understanding of genetic diversity, phylogenetic relationships, and population structure of the collection, and to improve melon taxonomic classifications. A core collection was developed from the analysis to provide a public resource for future research and genomics-assisted breeding. Thirty-five morphological characters were evaluated in the core collection to identify genomic regions potentially related to fruit quality and other horticultural traits important in melon improvement.
Watermelon Team | 2021 Progress Report
The watermelon team is led by Amnon Levi. Team objectives are to develop genomic, bioinformatic, mapping approaches and tools for cucurbits, map and develop markers for disease resistance, and introgress, pyramid/stack resistances into advanced breeding lines.
CucCAP scientists study effect of genome doubling on gene expression in tetraploid watermelon
Umesh Reddy and team at WVSU and Amnon Levi and team at USDA, ARS used advance genome sequencing technology to study the effect of genome doubling on gene expression in tetraploid watermelon versus their counterpart diploid watermelon parental plants.