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John Damien Platten

John Damien Platten

Research Unit Leader - Breeding Innovations and Informatics


Damien leads the Breeding Innovations and Informatics cluster, which aims to evaluate and develop new technologies and opportunities ready for their implementation in the mainstream breeding pipelines.  Damien personally leads the design of superior marker systems based on comparative genomics datasets, and the deployment of new genes into elite material.  To date the deployment team has delivered over 50 genes in elite, near-isogenic lines for validation purposes, most of them for the first time in elite backgrounds.  They are actively working to achieve a critical mass of elite material containing a pyramid of 3 blast resistance genes that could form the basis for a durable global strategy to eliminate rice blast from rice cultivation.

Damien has been instrumental in designing the rice Trait Development Pipeline, and together with Amelia Henry, oversees the implementation of the native traits strategy at IRRI.  His research work includes constructing ready-made populations for discovery applications, and has identified large-effect, robust and reliable QTLs for vegetative-stage salinity tolerance, and root knot nematode resistance.  He is working together with partners in Bangladesh on cold tolerance.


  • IRRI 2009 - present
  • CSIRO Plant Industry 2004 – 2009
  • PhD, University of Tasmania – 2004


  • PhD in Plant Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • BSc (Hons 1st)

Connect with him

Dr. J. Damien Platten

Breeding Innovations and Informatics Unit

Head, Native Trait Discovery and Deployment
International Rice Research Institute
National Road
Los Baños, Laguna 4031
Ph: +63 2 8580 5600 2759