Thomas Gradziel

Thomas Gradziel

Position Title

Department of Plant Sciences, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

1055 Wickson Hall

Profile Introduction

Research focuses on the genetic improvement of almond and peach. Strategies employed in include wild germplasm characterization, preservation and introgression, intra-and inter-specific hybridization, marker assisted selection, and epigenetic manipulation. Breeding objectives include developing productive, high market quality almond varieties and rootstocks which combine the novel traits required to meet emerging grower, processor and market demands, including self-fruitfulness, improved disease/pest resistance and improved water use efficiency. My lab is working to circumvent regeneration barriers in recalcitrant woody tree cultivars by targeting meristem competent tissue for transformation. Procedures are being developed to sort out inevitable genetic mosaics and to stabilize mosaics as epidermal chimeras. Resulting capability to synthesize genetically binary organs and tissue would provide a very powerful tool for crop improvement as well as for studying the basic nature of cell-tissue and tissue-tissue interactions in plant development.

Grad Group Affiliations

  • Horticulture and Agronomy Graduate Group
  • Integrative Genetics and Genomics
  • International Agricultural Development
  • Plant Biology

Specialties / Focus

  • Environmental and Integrative Biology


  • PLS 1 Agriculture, Nature and Society, Fall
  • pls 170A Fruit Crop Production, Multiple
  • PLS 170 B Nut Crop Production, Multiple
  • IAD/PLS 160 Agroforestry, Fall


  • Gradziel lab

Honors and Awards

  • L.D. Davis Endowed Chair for Tree Crop Breeding

    Professional Societies

    • International Society of Horticultural Sciences, American Pomological Society, American Society of Horticultural Sciences, Group de Recherches et d’Etudes Mediterraneen pour le Pistachier et l’Amandier


    • 1987 PhD Cornell University


    Jonathan Fresnedo-Ramírez, Thomas R. Famula and Thomas M. Gradziel. 2017.    Application of a Bayesian ordinal animal model for the estimation of breeding values for the resistance to Monilinia fruticola (G.Winter) Honey in progenies of peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch].      Breeding Science Preview doi:10.1270/jsbbs.16027

    Martínez-Gómez P, Prudencio AS, Gradziel TM, Dicenta F (2017) The delay of flowering time in almond: a review of the combined effect of adaptation, mutation and breeding. Euphytica 213 (8): 197.  DOI 10.1007/s10681-017-1974-5

    Fresnedo-Ramírez, J., Chan, H. M., Parfitt, D. E., Crisosto, C. H., & Gradziel, T. M.  2017. Genome-wide DNA-(de)methylation is associated with Noninfectious Bud-failure exhibition in Almond (Prunus dulcis [Mill.] D.A.Webb). Scientific Reports, 7. doi:10.1038/srep42686

    Changqi Liu.  : "Comparison of Laboratory-Developed and Commercial Monoclonal Antibody-Based Sandwich Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assays for Almond (Prunus dulcis) Detection and Quantification".  .  2017.    , JFDS-2017-0264.

    Fresnedo-Ramirez, J., Frett, T. J., Sandefur, P. J., Salgado-Rojas, A., Clark, J. R., Gasic, K., Peace, C. P., Anderson, N., Hartmann, T.P., Byrne, D.H., Bink, M., Van de Weg, E., Crisosto, C. and Gradziel, T.M.  2016.  QTL mapping and breeding value estimation through pedigree-based analysis of fruit size and weight in four diverse peach breeding programs.  Tree Genetics and Genomes  12 (2): 25.

    Techakanon, Chukwan; Gradziel, Thomas; Zhang, Lu; Barrett, Diane.  2016.    The Impact of Maturity Stage on Cell Membrane Integrity and Enzymatic Browning Reactions in High Pressure Processed Peaches (Prunus persica).  Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry DOI: 10.1021/acs.jafc.6b02252.

    Akagi, T, Hanada,T, Yaegaki, H, Gradziel, T,and Ryutaro Tao, R.  2016.    Genome-wide view of genetic diversity reveals paths of selection and cultivar differentiation in peach domestication. DNA Research,1–12.   DOI: 10.1093/dnares/dsw014.

    Techakanon, Chukwan; Gradziel, Thomas; Zhang, Lu; Barrett, Diane. 2016.   Effects of Peach Cultivar on Enzymatic Browning Following Cell Damage from High Pressure Processing.   Journal of Ag. and Food Chemistry, DOI: 10.1021/acs.jafc.6b01879

    Nassar , N.M.A. , N. N. Bomfim Fernandes, , D. Y. Hashimoto Freitas. and T. M. Gradziel.  2016.   Interspecific Periclinal Chimeras as a Strategy for Cultivar Development. In J. Janick (ed.) Plant Breeding Reviews.  40:235-263. ISBN: 978-1-119-27968-6.

    Fresnedo-Ramirez, J., Crisosto, C. H., Gradziel, T. M. and Famula, T. R. Xiloyannis, C., Inglese, P. and Montanaro, G.    2016    Pedigree correction and estimation of breeding values for peach genetic improvement.  Acta Horticulturae  no. 1084: 249-256.