Thomas Mitchell-Olds, Professor  

Thomas Mitchell-Olds

PhD, Wisconsin, 1985

Office Location: FFSC: 3311
Office Phone: (919) 668-1635
Email Address:
Web Page:

Ecology and Population Biology

Research Categories: Ecological and evolutionary genomics; Complex trait variation; Drought tolerance and food security

Research Description: We study genetic variation in plant populations, focusing on genes that influence traits controlling plant performance in an environmental context – a central theme throughout our research in natural and agricultural populations. Much of our work is focused on the genes that affect ecological success and evolutionary fitness in natural environments. Similarly, the interaction of crop plants with their biotic and abiotic environments is controlled by complex trait variation which can be elucidated by interdisciplinary analyses incorporating functional genomics, physiological and chemical ecology, and population and quantitative genetics. We work at several levels: genetic variation within populations, local adaptation among populations, and the evolution of species differences. Our study systems are centered on the wild relatives of Arabidopsis, as well as complex trait variation of rice and Brachypodium in agricultural and natural populations.

Representative Publications   (More Publications)   (search)

  1. Topp, CN, AS Iyer-Pascuzzi, JT Anderson, C-R Lee, PR Zurek, O Symonova, Y Zheng, A Bucksch, Y Milyeko, T Galkovskyi, BT Moore, J Harer, H Edelsbrunner, T Mitchell-Olds, JS Weitz, PN Benfey, 3-dimensional phenotyping of growing root systems and QTL mapping identifies core regions of the rice genome controlling root architecture, PNAS, vol. 10 (2012), pp. E1695-704 [doi] .
  2. Prasad, KVS, B-H Song, C Olson-Manning, JT Anderson, C-R Lee, ME Schranz, AJ Windsor, MJ Clauss, AJ Manzaneda, I Naqvi, M Reichelt, J Gershenzon, SG Rupasinghe, MA Schuler, T Mitchell-Olds, A gain-of-function polymorphism controlling complex traits and fitness in nature, Science, vol. 337 (2012), pp. 1081-4 .
  3. Anderson, J., C.-R. Lee, C. Rushworth, R. Colautti, and T. Mitchell-Olds, Genetic tradeoffs and conditional neutrality contribute to local adaptation, Molecular Ecology, vol. 22 (2013), pp. 699-708 .
  4. Colautti, R.I., C-R. Lee, and T. Mitchell-Olds, Origin, fate and architecture of ecologically relevant genetic variation, Current Opinion in Plant Biology, vol. 15 (2012), pp. 199-204 .
  5. Anderson, JT, JH Willis, and T. Mitchell-Olds, Evolutionary genetics of plant adaptation., Trends in Genetics, vol. 27 (2011), pp. 258-266 .
  6. Benfey, PN, and T. Mitchell-Olds, From genotype to phenotype: systems biology meets natural variation, Science, vol. 320 (2008), pp. 495-7 .
  7. Mitchell-Olds, T., and J. Schmitt., Genetic mechanisms and evolutionary significance of natural variation in Arabidopsis, Nature, vol. 441 (2006), pp. 947-952 .
  8. Kroymann, J., and T. Mitchell-Olds, Epistasis and balanced polymorphism influencing complex trait variation, Nature, vol. 435 (2005), pp. 95-98 .