Rancho Tissue Hires Research Director

Rancho Tissue Technologies, a plant-tissue culture facility serving the horticulture industry, is proud to welcome Dr. Shiping Zhang as its research director.

Dr. Zhang brings extensive experience as a plant physiologist in both industry and academics to the RTT team. In his new role as research director, Dr. Zhang will assist with all aspects of R&D, including hands-on research, as well as interact with biotechnology firms and support the improvement of already existing crops. Just some of the projects Dr. Zhang will oversee include tissue culture of bamboo, palms and cycads as well as mutation work to produce superior new selections.

Dr. Zhang possesses technical expertise in plant tissue culture, protoplast culture/fusion, transformation techniques, bacterial inoculation, plant genetic breeding and molecular biology and genomics, that will allow him to help move the company into other areas of plant biotechnology. He was previously staff scientist with Torrey Mesa Research Institute — Syngenta, where he managed plant tissue culture and transformation projects. Dr. Zhang also honed his skills during his seven years as Group Leader at the Scripps Research Institute in San Diego. While at Scripps, Dr. Zhang managed and trained researchers in tissue culture experimentation and transformation. He also received a grant to produce bacterial blight resistant rice varieties and coordinate transgenic field trials in the Philippines and China.

Dr. Zhang received his master of science degree in plant genetics and breeding from the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences in Beijing, China and went on to earn his Ph.D. in agronomy and crop physiology from the University of the Philippines.

“In addition to his excellent grasp of the science of what we do here at RTT, Shiping has the program development and management experience that will help take our firm to the next level,” said Heather May, president of RTT. “We’re excited to have him as a part of our team.”

currently, Rancho Tissue Technologies develops new, innovative and high quality plant varieties for the horticulture industry. The company has developed a proven and dependable reputation for providing high-quality liners and micro cuttings that ensure a crop is vigorous and disease-free.

Established in 1987, RTT’s cutting edge, environmentally controlled laboratory and 40,000-square-foot greenhouse is designed to produce up to 4 million plants per year and offer a multitude of services, including multiplication of hard to propagate plants, development of new and improved cultivars, virus eradication through heat-treatment and meristeming, and custom contract growing.

For more information on Rancho Tissue Technologies, please visit the company’s recently re-designed and expanded web site at www.ranchotissue.com.