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George Allen

Research Associate Professor Emeritus

Emeriti

  • B.S., Biology 1976 Virginia Tech University, Blacksburg, VA
  • M.S., Microbiology 1983 Virginia Tech University, Blacksburg, VA
  • Ph.D., Microbiology 1988 North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC

Dr. Allen received his Ph.D. in Microbiology from North Carolina State University with Dr. Gerald Elkan. He then moved into the area of plant molecular biology during his postdoctoral research position with Dr. William Thompson in the Botany Department at North Carolina State. Allen and Thompson, in a collaboration with Dr. Spiker and Dr. Gerald Hall (from the NC State Genetics Department), were the first to isolate the nuclear matrix (originally termed nuclear scaffold) from plants. The group then demonstrated that when DNA elements that bind to the nuclear matrix (called MARs or SARs) are used to flank a transgene, the expression of the transgene could be “protected” from certain forms of gene silencing.

Dr. Allen is currently the Director of the North Carolina State University Plant Transformation Laboratory in the Department of Crop Science. His research programs have both applied and basic research goals. The goal of the applied program is to improve the production of economically important transgenic plants by helping to build a bridge between NCSU plant breeding programs and NCSU molecular biology programs. Dr. Allen’s basic research goal is to gain a basic understanding of how higher-order nuclear structure impacts transcriptional and post-transcriptional gene silencing, DNA replication, and developmental processes plants. Information from the basic program can then be applied to plants of interest for the NCSU community.

Patents Issued

  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, and L.S. Mankin. “Method for Reducing Expression Variability of Transgenes in Plant Cells” Australian Patent Number 719306. Issued June 20, 2002.
  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, G. H. Hall, S. Spiker, and L. C. Childes. “A System for Reducing Expression Variability of Foreign Genes in Plant Cells”. Australian Patent Number 673859. International Publication Number WO 94/07902. International Publication Date of 4/14/94 for a term of 20 years commencing on 9/27/93).
  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, G. H. Hall, S. Spiker, and L. C. Childes. “Method of increasing expression of foreign genes in plant cells”. United States of America Patent Number 5773689. Issued June 30, 1998.
  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, G. H. Hall, and S. Spiker. “A Plant Nuclear Scaffold Region Increases Gene Expression Transgenic Plants”. United States of America Patent Number 5773695. Issued June 30, 1998.
  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, G. H. Hall, and S. Spiker. “ A Plant Nuclear Scaffold Region Increases Gene Expression Transgenic Plants”. Australian Patent Number 716202 granted June 8, 2000. Term of 20 years commencing on 1/24/97, expiring January 24, 2017.
  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, and L. S. Mankin. “Increasing Expression Variability of Transgenes in Plant Cells Using Insulator Elements” United States of America Patent Number 6,100,448. Issued August 8, 2000.
  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, and L. S. Mankin. “Method for Reducing Expression Variability of Transgenes in Plant Cells” United States of America Patent Number 6,037,525. Issued March 14, 2000.
  • W. F. Thompson, G. C. Allen, and L. S. Mankin. “Methods for Reducing Expression Variability of Transgenes in Plant Cells” New Zealand Patent No. 333998. Expiring July 31, 2017.
  • G.H. Helmer, G. C. Allen, and W.F. Thompson. “High Efficiency Gene Targeting in Plants” United States of America Patent Number 7,126,041. Issued October 24, 2006.

Publications

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