Dr. John Finer

In January of 2015, after ~4 years of service as Editor-in-Chief of In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology-Plant, Dr. John Finer of the Ohio State University has passed the position to Dr. David Duncan. The Society for In Vitro Biology thanks Dr. Finer for his service and welcomes Dr. Duncan as the new Editor-in-Chief. The following biography has been provided by Dr. Duncan. We hope you join us in welcoming him as the new Editor-in-Chief.

About David Duncan

David R. Duncan

Dr. David R. Duncan

For over 45 years I have pursued a broad range of plant science research. I began my studies at DePauw University, in Greencastle, Indiana, earning a degree in Botany with a focus on the ecology of Red Bullet Stem Galls. My studies drew me to summer work as a rose grower with Hills Roses in Richmond, Indiana, and eventually to graduate school at the University of Illinois (U of I), Urbana-Champaign. There, I continued my studies obtaining a Master’s degree in plant physiology, and subsequently a Ph.D. in Urban Forest Pathology with studies in Verticillium wilt of street trees. At the U of I, I served as a teaching assistant for Introductory Biology and Botany, and also worked for the Natural History Survey evaluating urban tree diseases throughout the Chicago area. Upon receiving my degree, I shifted my focus to agronomy, joining the lab of Dr. Jack Widholm, developing corn tissue culture techniques.

My research at the U of I focused on developing an understanding of nutrient media to more effectively culture multiple varieties of corn. The work included studies of plant regeneration, embryogenesis, and cold tolerance. With my growing expertise in tissue culture techniques, I became responsible for the development and organization of a campus wide, general use tissue culture lab. While at U of I, I co-authored many book chapters, manuscripts, and reports/bulletins on my work. I left the U of I to join colleagues at Monsanto Company, where I am presently a Senior Fellow. Throughout these endeavors I have shared this time with my wife, Dr. Janine Duncan. Since arriving in St. Louis we have raised two children—a son, Daniel, and daughter, Sarah.

In my 23 year career at Monsanto, I have collaborated in developing biotechnology products and techniques to increase the productivity of multiple agronomic crops. My research has contributed to YieldGard® corn, a family of NewLeaf® potato products and other initiatives related to wheat, sugar cane, and cotton. This work has been documented in numerous patents, book chapters, manuscripts, and bulletins/reports. Within Monsanto, I have promoted the development of future scientists, regularly tutoring interns, working with high school students through the International Science and Engineering Fair, and teaching two courses Tissue Culture Techniques and Plant Anatomy at Washington University, St. Louis.

Committed to promoting the importance of scientific research, I have been an associate editor for In Vitro Cellular and Developmental Biology-Plant for 14 years. I am thrilled to begin my service as Editor in Chief and look forward to maintaining the high standards the journal has obtained under the tutelage of Dr. John Finer. Furthermore, I ask the Society membership to work with me to increase the impact and relevance of our journal.

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