Dr. Wagner A. Vendrame
Professor — Biotechnology - Ornamental and Biofuel Crops
Dr. Vendrame leads a broad research program in ornamental plants, including the use of plant tissue culture, cryopreservation, molecular marker, and biotechnology techniques for plant production and conservation. For the past seven years, Dr. Vendrame has conducted studies on jatropha genetic improvement for biodiesel and bio jet fuel production. In 2007 he started a project to evaluate the effects of microgravity on the growth and differential gene expression of in Vitro plant cells under microgravity, with four spaceflight experiments conducted on board of the International Space Station and a last experiment performed in the mid-deck of the last space shuttle flight, Atlantis. Experiments included in vitro cell cultures of orchids, ornamental trees, and jatropha. He teaches Orchidology, the Orchid Short Course, and Special Topics on Micropropagation Techniques.