• Research group

Anthony Hall Group

Bridging the gap between model and crop species.

Anthony Hall

Head of Plant Genomics
Anthony Hall

Group activities.

We strive to develop next generation genetic approaches to bridge the gap between model (Arabidopsis) and crop species (primarily wheat) with the aim of understanding the genes/networks and genetic variance that underpin key agricultural traits.

To meet this goal we currently have a number of projects investigating the genes and networks underpinning yield robustness under drought and heat stress (India and UK) and enhancing photosynthesis (Mexico, Australia and the UK). We also have projects on the wheat epigenome characterising the epigenome in bread wheat, the variation of the epigenome across a global diversity panel and the role of the epigenome during genome shock (Germany, USA and UK).

We are interested in addressing fundamental biological questions with a focus on the circadian clock, with ongoing projects modelling clock networks with single-cell resolution in collaboration with James Locke (The Sainsbury Laboratory, University of Cambridge). In the future we aim to extend this work but also address the role of clock function during domestication and whether the clock is an important agricultural trait.

In addition, we have an interest in synthetic biology. Re-engineering plant genomes is going to be an important technology in the very near future and fits within our long term research strategy. We are keen to drive the formation of a UK Gene Foundry bringing together BBSRC investment across the UK into a single partnership capable of enabling world class synthetic biology.

Our current research project areas.

  • Combining field phenotyping and next generation genetics to uncover markers, genes and biology underlying drought tolerance in wheat
  • Using next generation genetic approaches to exploit phenotypic variation in photosynthetic efficiency to increase wheat yield
  • INvestigating TRiticeae EPIgenomes for Domestication (INTREPID)
  • Sequencing the genic portion of seeds of discovery advance pre- breeding germplasm to uncover the genetic variation
  • Is circadian function an important agronomic trait?
  • A computational cloud framework for the study of gene families


Using genic sequence capture in combination with a syntenic pseudo genome to map yellow rust resistance in hexaploid wheat

Laura-Jayne Gardiner, Pauline Bansept-Basler, Lisa Olohan, Ryan Joynson, Rachel Brenchley, Neil Hall, Donal Martin O’Sullivan and Anthony Hall.
Plant Journal 2016, 87:403-19.

A genome-wide survey of methylation in hexaploid wheat

Laura-Jayne Gardiner, Mark Quinton-Tulloch, Lisa Olohan, Jonathan Price, Neil Hall and Anthony Hall.
Genome Biology 2015, 16:273 

A haplotype map of allohexaploid wheat reveals distinct patterns of selection on homoeologous genomes

Katherine W Jordan, Shichen Wang, Yanni Lun, Laura-Jayne Gardiner, Ron MacLachlan, Pierre Hucl, Krysta Wiebe, Debbie Wong, Kerrie L Forrest, Andrew G Sharpe, Christine HD Sidebottom, Neil Hall, Christopher Toomajian, Timothy Close, Jorge Dubcovsky, Alina Akhunova, Luther Talbert, Urmil K Bansal, Harbans S Bariana, Matthew J Hayden, Curtis Pozniak, Jeffrey A Jeddeloh, Anthony Hall, Eduard Akhunov.
Genome Biology 16 (1), 48 (2015).

The circadian clock rephases during lateral root organ initiation in Arabidopsis thaliana

Ute Voß, Michael H Wilson, Kim Kenobi, Peter D Gould, Fiona C Robertson, Wendy A Peer, Mikaël Lucas, Kamal Swarup, Ilda Casimiro, Tara J Holman, Darren M Wells, Benjamin Péret, Tatsuaki Goh, Hidehiro Fukaki, T Charlie Hodgman, Laurent Laplaze, Karen J Halliday, Karin Ljung, Angus S Murphy, Anthony Hall, Alex A R Webb, and Malcolm J Bennett.
Nat Comms 6, 7641 (2015).

Related reading.