David L. Hyten

Associate Department Head, Haskins Professor in Plant Genetics and Associate Professor, Soybean Genetics/Genomics, Center for Plant Science Innovation, Nebraska Food for Health Center

Area of Expertise: Plant Breeding and Genetics

B.A., Microbiology, Southern Illinois University, 1999

M.S., Plant Breeding and Genetics, 2002

Ph.D. Crop Genetics, 2005

Area of Focus

Soybean Genetics and Genomics

Research Interests

My lab is focused on taking basic genetic and genomic discoveries in soybean and translating those discoveries into applied methods that can be used for the real-world improvement of soybean varieties. The program focuses specifically on improving agronomically important traits such as drought tolerance and response to water abundance. As we experience climate change, making cultivars able to withstand drought and highly responsive to water abundance will be key to feeding the world. My lab is working towards understanding the underlying genetic diversity that leads to drought tolerance so that we can link genetic diversity to this agronomically important phenotype and understand how genetic diversity interacts across the diverse environments encountered across Nebraska and the rest of the United States. To help translate that understanding into applied breeding methods, my lab also focuses on developing better methods, tools and genomic breeding strategies for utilizing that knowledge within soybean public and private breeding programs. A specific area of interest is understanding genetic recombination hotspots and coldspots and the genetic mechanisms responsible for recombination in soybean. The goal of this research will be to develop new techniques that allow breeders to manipulate recombination to incorporate essential genetic diversity into new breeding varieties while maintaining yield gains needed to meet future demands from population growth. Through this work my research program has the goal of accelerating the rate of genetic gain within soybean to meet the long-term challenges of feeding the world, and in combating the negative effects of climate change on soybean production.


Google Scholar publication list
  • Happ, M., Wang, H., Graef, G., Hyten Jr, D. (2019). Generating High Density, Low Cost Genotype Data in Soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.]. G3: Genes, Genomes, Genetics, 9(7), 2153-2160.
  • Song, Q., Hyten, D.L., Jia, G., Quigley, C.V., Fickus, E.W., Nelson, R.L., and Cregan, P.B. 2015. Fingerprinting soybean germplasm and its utility in genomic research. G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics 5, 1999-2006.
  • Schmutz, J., S. Cannon, J. Schlueter, J. Ma, T. Mitros, W. Nelson, D.L. Hyten, Q. Song, J. Thelen, J. Cheng, D. Xu, U. Hellsten, G. May, Y. Yu, T. Sakurai, T. Umezawa, M. Bhattacharyya, D. Sandhu, B. Valliyodan, E. Lindquist, M. Peto, D. Grant, S. Shu, D. Goodstein, K. Barry, M. Futrell-Griggs, J. Du, Z. Tian, L. Zhu, N. Gill, T. Joshi, M. Libault, A. Sethuraman, X.-C. Zhang, K. Shinozaki, H. Nguyen, R. Wing, P. Cregan, J. Specht, J. Grimwood, D. Rokhsar, G. Stacey, R. Shoemaker, and S. Jackson. 2010. Genome sequence of the paleopolyploid soybean. Nature 463:178-183.
  • Hyten, D.L., I.-Y. Choi, Q. Song, J.E. Specht, T.E. Carter, R.C. Shoemaker, E.-Y. Hwang, L.K. Matukumalli, and P.B. Cregan. 2010. A high density integrated genetic linkage map of soybean and the development of a 1,536 Universal Soy Linkage Panel for QTL mapping. Crop Sci. 50:960-968.
  • Hyten D., Song Q., Zhu Y., Choi I-Y., Nelson R., Costa J., Specht J., Shoemaker R., and Cregan P. 2006. Impacts of genetic bottlenecks on soybean genome diversity. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 103:16666-16671.