Seed Biotechnology Center
Seed Biotechnology Center
Seed Biotechnology Center
University of California
Seed Biotechnology Center

Welcome to the SBC


The mission of the Seed Biotechnology Center (SBC) is to mobilize the research, educational and outreach resources of UC Davis in partnership with the seed and biotechnology industries to facilitate discovery and commercialization of new seed technologies for agricultural and consumer benefit.

News & Updates

Study Finds Indigenous Mexican Variety of Corn Captures the Nitrogen It Needs from the Air

Corn story
A team of researchers including SBC Director of Research, Dr. Allen Van Deynze and Cristobal Heitmann, discover an indigenous variety of corn that can “fix nitrogen” from the atmosphere, instead of requiring synthetic fertilizers. Cristobal Heitman, “Cris”, was a beloved member of the UC Davis Plant Sciences Department. Cris’s energy and enthusiasm were a major catalyst in this research. Read more.

SBC releases 2019 Annual Report

In 2019, the SBC celebrated its 20th anniversary. Read about our festive celebration event last September as well as our numerous outreach, research and educational activities throughout 2019. It was a busy and productive year! Read Report (PDF)

Kent Bradford interviewed about mysterious seeds sent in mail

Kent Bradford interviewed about mysterious seeds sent in mail
Kent Bradford (SBC director emeritus) talks to a local news station about the mysterious seeds sent from China to Californians and others across the country, with a guest appearance by SBC researcher Pedro Bello! View video

Rale Gjuric discusses Haplotech's hemp research with Marc Zienkiewicz of Issues Ink

SBC's Education Director and Haplotech founder Dr. Rale Gjuric talks to Issues Ink's Marc Zienkiewicz about the groundbreaking work the company is doing in hemp, which will help advance breeding programs and help usher in a new era for the long-neglected crop. Listen Now

SBC director Allen Van Deynze addresses American Frozen Food Institute

SBC director Allen Van Deynze addresses American Frozen Food Institute
On March 1, 2020 (pre-COVID) and on behalf of the American Seed Trade Association, SBC director Allen Van Deynze, Jeff Zischke (Senior Director Research and Development, Sakata Seed America) and Andy LaVigne (President and CEO, American Seed Trade Association) discussed the importance of plant breeding innovation such a gene editing with the American Frozen Food Institute.

Allen Van Deynze invited as plenary speaker: 2020 Oxford Nanopore London Calling

London Calling 2020 online
Along with Bernice Waweru (BecA/ILRI), SBC Director Allen Van Deynze will be a plenary speaker at the 2020 Oxford Nanopore London Calling event, being held on June 18-19. Over 2500 people have already registered for this exciting event. Presentation Title: The African Orphan Crops Consortium, Alleviating Stunting due to Malnutrition One Crop at a Time. London Calling is a conference dedicated to scientific research using nanopore DNA/RNA sequencing. International speakers across three main tracks will be hosted this year: Human and clinical research, microbiology, and plant genomics. Learn more

Researchers at the University of California- Davis coffee genome
Featured on CBS News: UC Davis coffee researchers Juan Medrano and Allen Van Deynze (SBC Director) are the first geneticists to create a reference genome for a coffee bean, Coffea arabica.
Watch Now

Allen Van Deynze participates in Introduction to Food Innovation video discussion, hosted by the World Food Center

World Food Center
Pamela Ronald and Allen Van Deynze (both UC Davis) participated in a Facebook live video discussion as part of an e-conference held earlier this Fall and hosted by the Institute of Science and Global Policy
TOPIC: Introduction to Food Innovation
This discussion session was hosted by the World Food Center at UC Davis #NextGenFood

The SBC celebrating its 20th Anniversary this year! 
We are appreciating the past and looking forward. On September 12, 2019 at the International Center, UC Davis,the SBC hosted a day-long event with panels highlighting researchers, students, industry representatives and policy makers. The day concluded with Seed Central’s monthly networking event.

SBC 20th Anniversary Celebration

: Flier (PDF) • Print-friendly version

In loving memory, Cris Heitmann

SBC graduate student Cris Heitmann passed away on April 17, 2018 in a bicycle accident. He will be profoundly missed by colleagues, friends and family.
Learn more about Cris • Cris Heitmann
Scholarship Fund

Upcoming Courses & Events

Event Name

featured in 
Seed World Magazine
Two plant sciences professors-- Kent Bradford and Gurdev Khush are among  SEED WORLD magazines's picks for its list of 100 most transformational men and women in the seed industry in the last 100 years.

EUROPEAN SEED named SBC Education Director, Rale Gjuric, one of 20 most influential seed people. Read more. 


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