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Peggy Ozias-Akins

Peggy Ozias-Akins

Molecular and Developmental Geneticist
1986-Present

Career Highlights:

Dr. Ozias-Akins pioneered development of genetically engineered peanuts and peanut improvement using molecular techniques. Scientists from many peanut growing countries — Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, Australia, India, Ghana, Senegal, Egypt, Columbia, Thailand, Philippines, and China — have visited Tifton to take advantage of Dr. Ozias-Akins' knowledge and expertise.

Dr. Ozias-Akins is internationally recognized for research on self-reproducing hybrids. Understanding the molecular mechanism for apomixis (asexual reproduction) is the "holy grail" for breeders. After many years of research, Dr. Ozias-Akins (along with colleagues Wayne Hanna, Joann Conner and visiting scientists/students from around the world), discovered a gene for apomixis. To install apomixis into crops, she is collaborating with an international group (Australia, Switzerland, Germany, U.S., and Mexico) funded by the Gates Foundation.

Awards/Honors:

  • 1982: Alexander von Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellowship, Max-Planck-Institute for Plant Breeding
  • 2009: Elected Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • 2010: Peanut Research & Education Award, Peanut Foundation
  • 2012: Elected Fellow, Society for In Vitro Biology
  • 2015: Creative Research Medal, University of Georgia