Dr. Don Jones, Director of Agricultural and Environmental Research at Cotton Incorporated, and Dr. David Stelly, ICGI Co-Chair and professor at Texas A&M University presented Dr. Josh Udall of Brigham Young University with the 2014 Cotton Biotechnology Award for his work developing bioinformatics tools to help understand the cotton genome. Dr. Udall received the award during the International Cotton Genome Initiative (ICGI) workshop at the recent Plant and Animal Genome Conference held in San Diego.
In celebration, a number of peers and colleagues in attendance lauded Dr. Udall's accomplishments. "A shining star in cotton bioinformatics, Dr. Udall is leading the way in developing the software tools that are vital to modern cotton breeding programs," Dr. Jonathan Wendel of Iowa State University said. Dr. Candace Haigler, Professor of Crop Science and Plant Biology at North Carolina State University added "Dr. Udall has been developing genomic and bioinformatics resources on par with other model crops, keeping up with changes as the technology rapidly evolves."
Dr. Vasu Kuraparthy, Associate Professor at North Carolina State University, also praised Dr. Udall for developing a software pipeline that addresses genome annotation, SNP index creation and analysis of the genotyping by sequencing (GBS) data. The data is currently being generated into the cotton Nested Association Mapping (NAM) population efforts. Dr. Udall's data analysis pipeline includes such software developments as PolyCat, PolyDog, and BamBam.
The Cotton Biotechnology Award, endowed by a gift from Dr. Norma Trolinder in 2000, has previously been presented to four researchers. Award recipients complete outstanding biotechnology research in cotton and are selected from a committee comprised of a previous recipient and representatives from the USDA, a private seed company and a university.
Cotton Incorporated provides financial support for Dr. Udall's research. He recently was also awarded a National Science Foundation Plant Genome Program grant.
About Cotton Incorporated
Cotton Incorporated, funded by U.S. cotton producers and importers of cotton and cotton textile products, conducts worldwide research and promotion activities to increase the demand for and profitability of cotton.