Joyce Van Eck

Associate Professor
Joyce Van Eck
jv27@cornell.edu
Office/Lab: B13/B4
Phone: 607-254-1686
Office/Lab: B13/B4
Email: jv27@cornell.edu
Office Phone: 607-254-1686
Lab Phone: 607-254-1207
Research Overview

The focus of research in the Van Eck laboratory is biotechnological approaches to the study of gene function and crop improvement. For our studies, we apply several genetic engineering strategies to two major food crops: potato and tomato. The development of biotechnological techniques has made it possible to design and introduce gene constructs into plant cells and recover plants that express the introduced genes. Genes of interest to us have the potential to strengthen a plant’s resistance to disease, improve fruit characteristics, and enhance nutritional quality.

BTI Center for Plant Biotechnology Research

Groundcherry and Goldenberry Project

The Physalis Improvement Project

The Physalis genus is part of the Solanaceae family (also home to the well-known tomato and potato), and is home to the edible species of peruviana and pruinosa. These species are commonly referred to as groundcherry and goldenberry, as well as many other regional names. Plants produce small edible fruits that range from sweet to tart with a variety of unique flavors. This project aims to further explore the cultivation of peruviana and pruinosa in New York State and gauge potential for local food systems. The Physalis Improvement Project is led by the Van Eck research group and is made possible through funding from The Triad and National Science Foundations.

Intern Projects

The focus of research in the Van Eck laboratory is biotechnological approaches in the study of gene function and crop improvement.  The development of biotechnological techniques has made it possible to design and introduce gene constructs into plant cells with the subsequent recovery of plants that express the introduced genes.

We have a summer intern position available on a collaborative NSF-funded project to study the networks involved in meristem transitions in plants and their roles in branching variation and flower production.  Together with our collaborators on this project, we have established an approach that utilizes genetic, genomic, natural variation, and biotechnological tools in tomato and related Solanaceae species to identify and characterize the underlying molecular networks regulating shoot architecture and flower production in plants that exhibit the widespread “sympodial” growth habit.

The Van Eck lab’s role in this project is to develop efficient genetic engineering methods for several Solanaceaefamily members to determine candidate gene involvement in meristem transition and branching across species.  In addition, we are responsible for phenotypic analysis of the resultant transgenic lines that we grow in the BTI greenhouse.

Internship Program | Projects & FacultyApply for an Internship

  • BTI’s Michelle Heck and Joyce Van Eck Guest on Podcasts

    Boyce Thompson Institute is happy to share that two of our faculty members recently appeared as guests on popular podcasts. The content of these podcasts illustrate the breadth of research being done at the Institute to help increase global food security, improve human health and benefit the environment. Joyce Van Eck guested on the Gastropod […] Read more »
  • BTI Researchers Unlocking Hornworts’ Secrets

    Hornworts are a little-studied, ancient group of plants with some very unique biology, including their methods of securing carbon and nitrogen. Unlocking these secrets may help researchers boost agricultural output and use less synthetic fertilizer, as well as provide broader insights into plant evolution. Unfortunately, there are no genetic tools for determining the functions of […] Read more »
  • BTI Welcomes Summer Student Interns

  • CRISPR tames the wild groundcherry

    ITHACA, NY – You might not have heard of the groundcherry, or at least, never tasted one. But that could soon change thanks to research from the Van Eck Laboratory at Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI). The groundcherry (Physalis pruinosa) is approximately the same size as a cherry tomato, but with a much sweeter flavor. The […] Read more »
  • BTI promotes faculty members Schroeder and Van Eck

    Boyce Thompson Institute president, David Stern, has officially announced promotions for faculty members Frank Schroeder and Joyce Van Eck. Both researchers were thoroughly reviewed and evaluated on both their achievements to date and the potential they possess. Read more »

Rapid customization of Solanaceae fruit crops for urban agriculture.
2019.
Kwon, C.T., Heo, J., Lemmon, Z.H., Capua, Y., Hutton, S.F., Van Eck, Joyce, Park, S.J., Lippman. Z.B…
Nature Biotechnology.
:
Editorial: Setaria as a Model Genetic System to Accelerate Yield Increases in Cereals, Forage Crops, and Bioenergy Grasses.
2019.
Doust, A.N., Brutnell, T.P., Upadhyaya, H.D., Van Eck, Joyce
Frontiers in Plant Science.
10
:
Evolution of buffering in a genetic circuit controlling plant stem cell proliferation
2019.
Rodriguez-Leal, D., Xu, C., Kwon, C.T., Soyars, C., Demesa-Arevalo, E., Man, J., Liu, L., Lemmon, Z.…
Nature Genetics.
51
:
786–792
Duplication of a domestication locus neutralized a cryptic variant that caused a breeding barrier in tomato
2019.
Soyk, S., Lemmon, Z.H., Sedlazeck, F.J., Jiménez-Gómez, J,M,, Alonge, M., Hutton, S.F., Van Eck, J…
Nature Plants.
5
:
471–479
Application of CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated Gene Editing in Tomato
2019.
Reem, N., Van Eck, Joyce
Methods in Molecular Biology.
1917
:
In vitro plant regeneration and Agrobacterium tumefaciens– mediated transformation of Datura stramonium (Solanaceae)
2019.
Rajewski, A. , Elkins, K. , Henry, A. , Van Eck, Joyce, Litt, A.
Applications in Plant Sciences.
:
Development of plant regeneration and Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation methodology for Physalis pruinosa
2019.
Swartwood, K., Van Eck, Joyce
Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture (PCTOC).
:
Agrobacterium tumefaciens-Mediated Transformation of Tomato
2018.
Van Eck, Joyce, Keen, P., Tjahjadi, M
Transgenic Plants.
1864
:
225–234
Virus-induced gene silencing database for phenomics and functional genomics in Nicotiana benthamiana
2018.
Senthil-Kumar, M., Wang, Chang, J., Ramegowda, V., del Pozo, O., Liu, Y., Doraiswamy, V., Lee, H.-K.…
Plant Direct.
2
:
e00055
Rapid improvement of domestication traits in an orphan crop by genome editing
2018.
Lemmon, Z.H., Reem, N.T., Dalrymple, J, Soyk, S., Swartwood, K.E., Rodriguez-Lea, D., Van Eck, Joyce…
Nature Plants.
4
:
766–770
Provitamin A biofortification of cassava enhances shelf life but reduces dry matter content of storage roots due to altered carbon partitioning into starch
2018.
Beyene, G., Solomon, F. R., Chauhan, R. D., Gaitán-Solis, E., Narayanan, N., Gehan, J., Siritunga, …
Plant Biotechnology Journal.
16
:
1186–1200
Utilization of the Maize Morphogenic Genes Baby Boom and WUSCHEL for Transformation of Setaria viridis and Maize
2018.
Van Eck, Joyce, Middleton, L., Pidgeon, K.
IN VITRO CELLULAR & DEVELOPMENTAL BIOLOGY-ANIMAL.
54
:
S16–S17
The Status of Setaria viridis Transformation: Agrobacterium-Mediated to Floral Dip
2018.
Van Eck, Joyce
Frontiers in Plant Science.
9
:
Ectopic expression of ORANGE promotes carotenoid accumulation and fruit development in tomato
2018.
Yazdani, M., Sun, Z., Yuan, H., Zeng, S., Thannhauser, T. W., Vrebalov, J., Ma, Q., Xu, Y., Fei, Zha…
Plant Biotechnology Journal.
:
RNAi-mediated silencing of endogenous Vlnv gene confers stable reduction of cold-induced sweetening in potato (Solanum tuberosum L. cv. Désirée)
2018.
Hameed, A., Bilal, R., Latif, F., Van Eck, Joyce, Jander, Georg, Mansoor, S.
Plant Biotechnology Reporter.
12
:
1–11
Development of an Agrobacterium-mediated transformation method for Taxus suspension cultures
2018.
Wilson, S. A., Keen, P., McKee, M. C., Raia, N., Van Eck, Joyce, Roberts, S. C.
In Vitro Cellular and Developmental Biology - Plant.
54
:
36–44
Genome editing and plant transformation of solanaceous food crops
2018.
Van Eck, Joyce
Current Opinion in Biotechnology.
49
:
35–41
Bypassing Negative Epistasis on Yield in Tomato Imposed by a Domestication Gene
2017.
Soyk, S., Lemmon, Z. H., Oved, M., Fisher, J., Liberatore, K. L., Park, S. J., Goren, A., Jiang, K.,…
Cell.
169
:
1142–1155.e12
Variation in the flowering gene SELF PRUNING 5G promotes day-neutrality and early yield in tomato
2017.
Soyk, S., Müller, N. A., Park, S. J., Schmalenbach, I., Jiang, K., Hayama, R., Zhang, L., Van Eck, …
Nature genetics.
49
:
162–168
Towards an understanding of the molecular basis of effective RNAi against a global insect pest, the whitefly Bemisia tabaci
2017.
Luo, Y., Chen, Q., Luan, J., Chung, S. H., Van Eck, Joyce, Turgeon, R., Douglas, Angela E.
Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
88
:
21–29

Vectors and Cells for Preparing Immunoprotective Compositions Derived from Transgenic Plants
Joyce Van Eck
Technology Area:Enabling Technology - Virus, Vaccines
US Patent/Application(s): 7,132,291
Additional Lead Inventor(s): Hugh Mason
Vectors and Cells for Preparing Immunoprotective Compositions Derived from Transgenic Plants
Joyce Van Eck
Technology Area:Enabling Technology - Virus, Vaccines
US Patent/Application(s): 7,407,802
Additional Lead Inventor(s): Hugh Mason
Or gene and its use in manipulating carotenoid content and composition in plants and other organisms
Joyce Van Eck
Technology Area:Nutritional Quality
US Patent/Application(s): 8,071,841
Publication: J Exp Botany 2008
Enhancement of Beta-Carotene Content in Plants
Joyce Van Eck
Technology Area:Nutritional Quality
US Patent/Application(s): 11/722,244
 

Contact:

Boyce Thompson Institute
533 Tower Rd.
Ithaca, NY 14853
607.254.1234
contact@btiscience.org