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Darren Touchell – Resume

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Professional Experience

  • Research Associate, Department of Horticultural Science, Mountain Horticultural Crops Research & Extension Center North Carolina State University (2005-present).
  • Research Fellow, Plant Biotechnology Research Center, School of Forestry and Wood Products, Michigan Technological University (2000-2003)
  • Post doctoral fellow USDA-ARS National Seed Storage Laboratory (1998-2000)
  • Post doctoral fellow at Kings Park and Botanic Garden (1996 to 1997)


  • 1992 – 1996: Ph.D. Botany Department, University of Western Australia. Focus: Plant Physiology and cryopreservation for the conservation of threatened Australian plants
  • 1988 – 1992: B.S. (Biology) (First Class Honours) Curtin University, Perth, Australia.

List of Publications

  • Touchell, D.H., Dixon, K.W. and Tan, B. (1992). Cryopreservation of shoot-tips of Grevillea scapigera (Proteaceae): a rare and endangered plant from Western Australia. Australian Journal of Botany. 40: 305 – 310.
  • Touchell, D.H. and Dixon, K.W. (1993). Cryopreservation of seed of Western Australian native species. Biodiversity and Conservation. 2: 592 – 602.
  • Touchell, D.H. and Dixon, K.W. (1994). Cryopreservation for seedbanking of Australian species. Annals of Botany 74: 541-546.
  • Walters, C., Roos, E.E., Touchell, D.H., Stanwood, P.C., Towill, L., Weisner, L. and Eberhart, S.A. (1998). Refrigeration can save seeds eeconomically. Nature. 395: 758.
  • Senaratna, T., Dixon, K.W. Bunn, E. Touchell, D.H. (1999). Smoke saturated water promotes somatic embryogenesis in geranium. Plant Growth Regulation. 28(2): 95-99.
  • Senaratna, T., Touchell, D.H. Bunn, E. and Dixon, K.W. (2000). Acetyl salicylic acid (Asprin) and salicylic acid induce multiple stress tolerance in bean and tomato plants. Plant Growth Regulation. 30(2): 157-161.
  • Merritt, D., Touchell, D.H., Dixon, K.W., Plummer, J.A. and Turner, D.W.(2000). Moisture content influences survival of cryostored seed of Banksia Ashbyi (Proteaceae) Australian Journal of Botany. 48(5): 581-587.
  • Turner, S, Touchell, D.H., Dixon, K.W. and Tan, B. (2000). Cryopreservation and recovery of horticulturally valuable Haemodoraceae species. Australian Journal of Botany. 48(6): 739-744.
  • Touchell, D.H. and Walters, C. (2000). Recovery of embryos of Zizania palustris following exposure to liquid nitrogen. Cryo-letters 21: 261-270.
  • Turner, S.R., Senaratna, T., Touchell, D.H., Bunn, E., Dixon, K.W. and Tan, B. (2000).
    Stereochemical arrangement of hydroxyl groups in sugar molecules as important factor in effective cryopreservation. Plant Science. 48: 489-497.
  • Turner, S.R., Senaratna, T., Touchell, D.H., Tan, B. and Dixon, K.W. (2000). Cryopreservation of Macropedia filiginosa by vitrification. Cryo-Letters. 21: 379-388.
  • Turner S.R., Senaratna T, Bunn E, Tan B, Dixon KW, Touchell, D.H. (2000). Cryopreservation of shoot tips from six endangered Australian species using a modified vitrification protocol. Annals of Botany 87: 371-378.
  • Turner S.R., Touchell, D.H., Senaratna T, Bunn E, Tan, B. and Dixon, K.W. (2001). Effects of plant growth regulators on survival and recovery growth following cryopreservation. Cryo-Letters 22: 163-174.
  • Turner S.R., Krauss SL, Bunn E, Senaratna T, Dixon K, Tan, B. and Touchell DH. (2001). Genetic fidelity and viability of Anigozanthos viridis following tissue culture, cold storage and cryopreservation. Plant Science 161, 1099-1106.
  • Touchell, D.H., Chiang, V.L. and Tsai, C-J. (2002) Cryopreservation of embryogenic cultures of Picea mariana (black spruce) using vitrification. Plant Cell Reports 21: 118-124.
  • Walters, C, Touchell, D.H., Power P., Wesley-Smith, J. and Antolin, M.F. (2002). A cryopreservation protocol for embryos of the endangered species Zizania texana. Cryo-Letters 23: 291-298.
  • Merritt D.J., Touchel, D.H., Senaratna T, Dixon KW, and Sivasithamparam K. (2003). Water Sorption Characteristics of Seeds of Four Western Australian Species. Australian Journal of Botany. 51.
  • Merritt, D.J., Senaratna, T., Touchell, D.H., Dixon, K.W. and Sivasithamparam, K. (2003). Seed ageing of four Western Australian species in relation to the storage environment and antioxidant activity. Seed Science Research 13, 155-165.
  • Senaratna, T., Merritt, D., Dixon, K., Bunn, E., Touchell, D. and Sivasithamparam, K. (2003) Benzoic acid may act as the functional group in salicylic acid and derivatives in the induction of multiple stress tolerance in plants. Plant growth regulation. 39: 77-81.
  • Richards, C.M., Reilley, A., Touchell, D., Antolin, M.F., and Walters, C. (2004). Microsatellite primers used to assess the impact of cryogenic storage on genetic diversity in Texas wild rice (Zizania texana). Conservation Genetics, 5: 853-859.
  • Merritt, D.J., Touchell, D.H., Senaratna, T., Dixon, K.W. and Sivasithamparam, K. (2005). Cryostorage of seed of Anigozanthos manglessii. Cryo-letters 26: 121-130.
  • Touchell, D.H., Smith, J,. and Ranney, T.G. (2008). Novel applications of plant tissue culture. Combined proceedings International Plant Propagators Society. 58. 22-25.
  • Meyer, E.M., Touchell, D.H., and Ranney, T.G. (2009). In vitro regeneration and polyploidy induction from leaves of Hypericum species. Hortscience 44.
  • Herbert, C.J., Touchell, D.H., Ranney, T.G. and Lebude, A.V. (2010). In vitro regeneration and polyploidy induction of Rhododendron ‘Fragrantissimum Improved’. Hortscience. 45. 801-804.
  • Rounsaville, T.J., D.H. Touchell, T.G. Ranney, and F.A. Blazich. 2011. Micropropagation of Mahonia ‘Soft Caress’. Hortscience 46(7):1010-1014.
  • Rounsaville, T.J., D.H. Touchell, and T.G. Ranney. 2011. Fertility and reproductive pathways in diploid and triploid Miscanthus sinensis. Hortscience 46(10):1353-1357. (HortScience Cover)
  • Oates, K.M., T.G. Ranney, D.H. Touchell. 2012. Influence of Induced Polyploidy on Fertility and Morphology of Rudbeckia Species and Hybrids. Hortscience 47(9):1217-1221.
  • Parris, J.K., D.H. Touchell, T.G. Ranney, and J. Adelberg. 2012. Basal Salt Composition, Cytokinins, and Phenolic Binding Agents Influence In Vitro Growth and Ex Vitro Establishment of Magnolia ‘Ann’. Hortscience 47(11):1625-1629.
  • Oates, K.M, D.H Touchell, T.G Ranney. 2013. Induced Variation in Tetraploid Rudbeckia subtomentosa ‘Henry Eilers’ Regenerated from Gamma-irradiated Callus. Hortscience 48(7):831-834.
  • Lattier, J.D., D.H. Touchell, T.G. Ranney, J.C. Smith. 2013. Micropropagation and Polyploid Induction of Acer platanoides ‘Crimson Sentry’. J. Environ. Hort. 31(4):246-252.
  • Oates, K.M., T.G. Ranney, D.H. Touchell, Z. Viloria. 2014. Campsis ×tagliabuana ‘Chastity’: A Highly Infertile Triploid Trumpet Vine. HortScience 49(3):343-345.
  • Touchell, D.H., T.G. Ranney, D.R. Panthee, R.J. Gehl, and A. Krings. 2016. Genetic diversity, cytogenetics, and biomass yields among taxa of giant reeds (Arundo species). J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 141(3):256-263.
  • Phillips, W.D., T.G. Ranney, D.H. Touchell, and T.A. Eaker. 2016. Fertility and Reproductive Pathways of Triploid Flowering Pears (Pyrus sp.). HortScience 51(8):968–971.
  • Maren, N.A., D.H. Touchell, T.G. Ranney, H. Ashrafi, M.B. Whitfield, and M. Chinn. 2020. Biomass yields, cytogenetics, fertility, and compositional analyses of novel bioenergy grass hybrids (Tripidium spp.). Global Change Biology Bioenergy.
  • Touchell, D.H., I.E. Palmer, and T.G. Ranney. 2020. In vitro ploidy manipulation for crop improvement. Front. Plant Sci. 11:722.
  • Deans, L.E., I.E. Palmer, D.H. Touchell and T.G. Ranney. 2021. In Vitro Induction and Characterization of Polyploid Hydrangea macrophylla and H. serrata. HortScience 56(6):709-715.

Edited Books

  • Touchell, D.H., Dixon, K.W. and Richardson, M. (1997). Germplasm conservation guidelines for Australia. Australian Network for Plant Conservation. Canberra. 51 pages.
  • Touchell, D.H. and Dixon, K.W. (1998). Proceedings of the IV International Botanic Gardens Conservation Congress. Kings Park and Botanic Garden. Perth. 356 pages.

Book Chapters

  • Touchell, D.H. and Dixon, K.W. (1997). Guidelines for cryogenic storage of Australian native plants. In: Australian guidelines for germplasm storage. Australian Network for Plant Conservation . (D.H. Touchell, K.W. Dixon and M. Richardson eds.) Australian Network for Conservation, Canberra. pp 29-32.
  • Touchell, D.H. and Dixon, K.W. (1999). In vitro preservation. In: A Colour Atlas of Plant Propagation and Conservation (B.G. Bowes ed.). Manson Publishing:London pp 108-118.
  • Touchell, D.H., Walters, C. and Roos, E.E. (2000). Seed Storage and Longevity. McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science and Technology. Submitted April 1999.
  • Touchell, D.H., Turner, S.R, Bunn, E. and Dixon, K.W. (2002). Cryostorage of somatic tissues of Australian endangered plants. In: Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry 50: Cryopreservation of Plant Germplasm: Part II. (ed L.E. Towill and Y.P.S. Bajaj) pp 357-372.
  • Touchell, D.H. Turner, S.R., Seneratna, T., Bunn, E. and Dixon, K.W. (2002). Effects of plant hormones on the cryostorage of Australian native plants. In: Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry 50: Cryopreservation of Plant Germplasm: Part II. (ed L.E. Towill and Y.P.S. Bajaj) pp 373-390.
  • Touchell, D.H. Wang, Y-S., Harding, S.A. and Tsai, C-J. (2003). Differential Display. In: Handbook of Molecular and cellular Methods in Biology and Medicine. 2nd ed. (eds Cseke, L.J. Kaufman, P.B., Kim, D., Podila, G.K. and Tsai, C.-J.). CRC Press Boca Raton, FL. In Press