Principal Investigator

Mark Tester

Professor, Plant Science; Associate Director, Center for Desert Agriculture

Research Interest: Salinity tolerance, Ion transport, Crop science, Plant physiology

Research Scientists

Ryan Lefers

Agriculture Engineer

Research Interest: Food/water/energy nexus, controlled environment agriculture, saltwater-based agriculture, aquaponics, horticulture lighting, circular agriculture systems

Vanessa Melino

Research Scientist

Research Interest: Plant physiology, Plant nutrition, Salinity tolerance, Root architecture, Ion transport

Postdoctoral Fellows

Dongryung Lee

Postdoctoral Fellow

Research Interest: Salinity tolerance

Elodie Rey

Postdoctoral Fellow

Research Interest: Crops, Genomics, Transcriptomic, polyploidy, Domestication, stress resillience

PhD Students

Clara Stanschewski

Ph.D. Student

Research Interest: Plant genetics, Plant Phenotyping, Genome-Wide Association studies, Genotype x environment interactions, Plant domestication, Climate change

Nathaly Ortiz

Ph.D. Student

Research Interest: Grafting, salinity tolerance, tomatoes, polyploids

Research Group Staff

Dinara Utarbayeva

Greenhouse Technician

Research Interest: Crossing, grafting tomatoes, germination and propagating coarctata rice

Gabriele Fiene

Research Specialist

Research Interest: Salinity tolerance, Domestication, Field trails, Crop wild relatives

Hongwei Ren

Greenhouse Technician

Research Interest: Salinity tolerance, tomato

Lila Ali Aldakheel

Greenhouse Technician

Noha O. Saber

Lab Technician

Research Interest: Salinity tolerance, Molecular biology