The laboratory of The Doganlar/Frary Lab for Plant Molecular Genetics and Breeding in the Department of Molecular Biology & Genetics at Izmir Institute of Technology is engaged in a wide array of plant-related research. We are interested in the diversity and improvement of crops that are important to the Turkish economy and agriculture. Past and current projects have focused on cotton, melon, chickpea, sesame, opium poppy, olive, and solanaceous species including tomato, pepper and eggplant.
Turkey is a center of domestication and/or diversity for many crops and, as such, has an important role in germplasm preservation and maintenance. We have contributed to this effort by characterization of molecular genetic diversity in the national germplasm collections of species including melon, olive and sesame. We are also interested in the genetic control of qualitative and quantitative traits in plants. Our focus is on characteristics which are important for the farmer as well as the consumer. For example, we have mapped disease resistance, salt tolerance, nutritional quality and horticultural parameters in tomato, eggplant and pepper. Our mapping work also encompasses comparative mapping to elucidate conservation of genome arrangement and gene function during evolution and domestication. In addition to our work in genetics, our laboratory is experienced in characterization of nutritional quality via biochemical assays and metabolomics and in the examination of the plant proteome. In this way we are capable of phenotyping plants at various levels (metabolite, protein, whole plant) to aid in our understanding of the genetic control of the traits of interest.