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Michael O. Pumphrey

Mike Pumphrey speaking to a crowd at a field day.

Associate Professor

O.A. Vogel Endowed Chair of Spring Wheat Breeding and Genetics

381 Johnson Hall
PO Box 646420
Pullman WA 99164-6420 USA
Phone 509-335-0509
FAX 509-335-8674


B.S.  2000.  Oklahoma State University.  Plant and Soil Sciences
M.S.  2003.  University of Minnesota.  Applied Plant Sciences
Ph.D.  2007.  Kansas State University.  Plant Pathology


I teach a large-enrollment introductory undergraduate course, Crop Growth and Development (Crop_Sci 202 cross-listed as Hort_202), in the spring each year. I also teach a graduate plant breeding and genetics course (Crop_Sci 505) in the fall of odd years. In both classes I strive to connect real-world examples and the latest technology and information with fundamental concepts and principles in crop improvement. I draw heavily on my role as an applied plant breeder that continues to be intimately involved in production agriculture.


I lead the spring wheat breeding and genetics program. We are focused on development of biotic and abiotic stress tolerant, high-yielding, and high-quality spring wheat varieties for diverse Washington (Pacific Northwest) production environments. Genetic dissection of disease resistance, grain quality, and abiotic stress tolerance traits are major research areas. Germplasm enhancement, application of genomics information and technology, and appropriate breeding and selection schemes are integrated to strengthen long-term variety development efforts and accelerate genetic gain.

Spring Wheat Research Group 2011

Wheat Varieties Released

Alum, hard red spring wheat, flyerChet, hard red spring wheat, flyerGlee, hard red spring wheat, flyerMelba, club spring wheat, flyerRyan, soft white spring wheat, flyerSeahawk, soft white spring wheat, flyerTekoa, soft white spring wheat, flyer



















Recent Publications

Maccaferri, M., et al. 2019.  Durum wheat genome reveals past domestication signatures and future improvement targets. Nature Genetics 51:885-895.

Muleta, K.T., X. Chen, and M. Pumphrey*. Genome-wide mapping of resistance to stripe rust caused by Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici in hexaploid winter wheat. Crop Science. In press.

Liu,W., J. Kolmer, S. Rynearson, X. Chen, L. Gao, J.A. Anderson, M.K. Turner, and M. Pumphrey*. 2019. Identifying loci conferring resistance to leaf and stripe rusts in a spring wheat population (Triticum aestivum L.) via genome-wide association mapping.  Phytopathology.

Blake, N.K., M. Pumphrey, K. Glover, S. Chao, K. Jordan, J-L Jannick, E.A. Akhunov, J. Dubcovsky, H. Bockelman, and L.E. Talbert.  2019.  Registration of the Triticeae-CAP Spring Wheat Nested Association Mapping Population. Journal of Plant Registrations. 13(2): 294-297.

Ando, K., V. Krishnan, M. Rouse, T. Danilova, B. Friebe, D. See, and M. Pumphrey*. 2019. Introgression of a novel stem rust (race TTKSK) resistance gene into wheat and development of Dasypyrum villosum chromosome specific markers via genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS). Plant Disease. 103 (6), 1068-1074.

Kiszonas, A.M., R. Higginbotham, X.M. Chen, K. Garland-Campbell, N.A. Bosque-Pérez, M. Pumphrey, M.N. Rouse, D. Hole, N. Wen, and C.F. Morris. 2019. Agronomic Traits in Durum Wheat Germplasm Possessing Puroindoline Genes. Agron. J. 111:1254-1265. doi:10.2134/agronj2018.08.0534

Rawat, N., A. Joshi, M. Pumphrey, L. Singh, A. Mahlandt, B. Chhabra, D. Wilson, B. Gill, J. Poland, and V. Tiwari. 2019. A TILLING Resource for Hard Red Winter Wheat Variety Jagger. Crop Science. 59:1666-1671. doi:10.2135/cropsci2019.01.0011

Gizaw, S.A., J. Godoy, M. Pumphrey, and A.H. Carter. 2018. Spectral reflectance for indirect selection and genome-wide association analyses of grain ield and drought resistance in North American spring wheat. Crop Science. 58(6): 2289-2301.

Jordan, K.W., S. Wang, S. Chao, Y. Lun, E. Paux, P. Sourdille, J. Sherman, A. Akhunova, N.K. Blake, M.O. Pumphrey, K. Glover, R. King, A.L. Phillips, C. Uauy, J. Dubcovsky, L. Talbert, and E. Akhunov. 2018. The genetic architecture of genome‐wide recombination rate variation in allopolyploid wheat revealed by nested association mapping.  Plant Journal.

Godoy, J. S. Gizaw, S. Chao, N. Blake, J. Dubcovsky, C. Pozniak, A. Carter, M. Pumphrey*, and L. Talbert. 2018. Genome-wide Association Study (GWAS) of Agronomic Traits in a North American Elite Spring Wheat Panel. Crop Science 58:1838–1852

Dong, H. R. Wang, Y. Yuan, J. Anderson, M. Pumphrey, Z. Zhang, and J. Chen. 2018. Evaluation of the Potential for Genomic Selection to Improve Spring Wheat Resistance to Fusarium Head Blight in the Pacific Northwest. Frontiers in Plant Science. 9: 911.

Ando, K., S. Rynearson, K.T. Muleta, J. Gedamu, B, Girma, N. Bosque-Pérez, M.S. Chen, and M.O. Pumphrey*. 2018. Genome-Wide Associations for Multiple Pest Resistances in a Northwestern United States Elite Spring Wheat Panel. Plos One.

Edae, E.A., M.O. Pumphrey, and M.N. Rouse. 2018. A Genome-wide Association Study of Field and Seedling Response to Individual Stem Rust Pathogen Races Reveals Combinations of Race-specific Genes in North American Spring Wheat.  Frontiers in Plant Science 9:52. 

Kidwell, K.K., J.S. Kuehner, G.B. Shelton, V.L. DeMacon, S. Rynearson, X.M. Chen, S.O. Guy, J.M. Marshall, D.A. Engle, C.F. Morris, and M.O. Pumphrey*. 2018. Registration of ‘Dayn” Hard White Spring Wheat. Journal of Plant Registrations. Online first.

Godoy, J., S. Rynearson, X. Chen, and M. Pumphrey*. 2017. Genome-wide Association Mapping of Loci for Resistance to Stripe Rust in North American Elite Spring Wheat Germplasm. Phytopathology.

Kidwell, K.K, M. O. Pumphrey*, J. S. Kuehner, G. B. Shelton, V. L. DeMacon, S. Rynearson, X. M. Chen, S. O. Guy, D. A. Engle, B.-K. Baik, C. F. Morris, and N. A. Bosque-Pérez. 2017. Registration of ‘Glee” Hard Red Spring Wheat. Journal of Plant Registrations. doi:10.3198/jpr2016.04.0022crc.

Liu, W., M. Maccaferri, X. Chen, G. Laghetti, D. Pignone, M. Pumphrey*, and R. Tuberosa. 2017. Genome-wide association mapping reveals a rich genetic architecture of stripe rust resistance loci in emmer wheat (Triticum turgidum ssp. dicoccum). Theoretical and Applied Genetics. 130: 2249-2270.

Muleta, K.T., M.N. Rouse, S. Rynearson, X. Chen, B. G. Buta, and M.O. Pumphrey*. 2017. Characterization of molecular diversity and genome-wide mapping of loci associated with resistance to stripe rust and stem rust in Ethiopian bread wheat accessions. BMC Plant Biology. 17:134.

Gao, L., M.N. Rouse, P. Mihalyov, P. Bulli, M. Pumphrey*, and J.A. Anderson. 2017. Genetic Characterization of Stem Rust Resistance in a Global Spring Wheat Germplasm Collection.  Crop Science. 57: 2575-2589. doi:10.2135/cropsci2017.03.0159

Muleta, K.T., P. Bulli, S. Rynearson, X. Chen, and M. Pumphrey*. 2017. Loci Associated with Resistance to Stripe Rust (Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici) in a Core Collection of Spring Wheat (Triticum aestivum). Plos One. 12: e0179087. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.017908

Muleta, K.T., P. Bulli, Z. Zhang, X. Chen, and M. Pumphrey*. 2017. Unlocking diversity in germplasm collections by genomic selection: a case study based on quantitative adult plant resistance to stripe rust in spring wheat. The Plant Genome. doi:10.3835/plantgenome2016.12.0124.

Mihalyov, P.D., V.A. Nichols, P. Bulli, M.N. Rouse, and M.O. Pumphrey*. 2017. Multi-locus Mixed Model Analysis of Stem Rust Resistance in Winter Wheat. The Plant Genome. doi:10.3835/plantgenome2017.01.0001.

Liu, W., M. Maccaferri, S. Rynearson, T. Letta, H. Zegeye, R. Tuberosa, X. Chen, and M. Pumphrey*. 2017. Novel Sources of Stripe Rust Resistance Identified by Genome-Wide Association Mapping in Ethiopian Durum Wheat (Triticum turgidum ssp. durum). Frontiers in Plant Science. 8:774.

Liu, W. M. Maccaferri, P. Bulli, S. Rynearson, R. Tuberosa, X. Chen, and M. Pumphrey*. 2017. Genome-wide association mapping for seedling and field resistance to Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici in elite durum wheat. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 130: 649-667. doi:10.1007/s00122-016-2841-9

Wan, A., K. Muleta, H. Zegeye, B. Hundie, M. Pumphrey*, and X. Chen. 2017. Virulence Characterization of Wheat Stripe Rust Fungus Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici in Ethiopia and Evaluation of Ethiopian Wheat Germplasm for Resistance to Races of the Pathogen from Ethiopia and the United States. Plant Disease. 101:73-80.

Turner, M.K.,  J.A. Kolmer, M.O. Pumphrey*, P. Bulli, S. Chao, and J.A. Anderson. 2017. Association mapping of leaf rust resistance loci in a spring wheat core collection. Theor Appl Genet. 130: 345-361. doi:10.1007/s00122-016-2815-y.

Rawat, N., M.O. Pumphrey*, S. Liu, X. Zhang, V.K. Tiwari, K. Ando, H.N. Trick, W.W. Bockus, E. Akhunov, J.A. Anderson, and B.S. Gill. 2016.  Wheat Fhb1 encodes a chimeric lectin with agglutinin domains and a pore-forming toxin-like domain conferring resistance to Fusarium head blight. Nature Genetics.48:1576-1580. doi:10.1038/ng.3706.

Bulli, P.,  J. Zhang, S. Chao, X. Chen, and M. Pumphrey*. 2016. Genetic Architecture of Resistance to Stripe Rust in a Global Winter Wheat Germplasm Collection. G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics. 6:2237-2253.

Nirmala, J., S. Chao, P. Olivera, B. Abeyo, M. Imtiaz, E. Akhunov, M.O. Pumphrey*, Y. Jin, and M.N. Rouse. 2016. Markers linked to wheat stem rust resistance gene Sr11 effective to Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici race TKTTF. Phytopathology. 106:1352-1358.

Naruoka, Y., K. Ando, P. Bulli, K. T. Muleta, S. Rynearson, and M.O. Pumphrey*. 2016. Identification and validation of SNP markers linked to the stripe rust resistance gene Yr5 in wheat. Crop Science. 56:3055-3065

Nasseer, A.M., J.M. Martin, H.-Y. Heo, N.K. Blake, J.D. Sherman, M. Pumphrey*, K.D. Kephart, S.P. Lanning, Y. Naruoka, and L.E. Talbert. 2016. Impact of a Quantitative Trait Locus for Tiller Number on Plasticity of Agronomic Traits in Spring Wheat. Crop Science. 56:595-602.

Bajgain, P., M.N. Rouse, P. Bulli, S. Bhavani, T. Gordon, R. Wanyera, P.N. Njau, W. Legesse, J.A. Anderson, and M.O. Pumphrey*. 2015. Association Mapping of North American Spring Wheat Breeding Germplasm Reveals Loci Conferring Resistance to Ug99. BMC Plant Biology. 15:249.

Sankaran, S., L.R. Khot, C. Zúñiga Espinoza, S. Jarolmasjed, V. Sathuvalli, G. Vandemark, P.N. Miklas, A. Carter, M. Pumphrey*, N.R. Knowles, and M.J. Pavek. 2015. Low-altitude, high-resolution aerial imaging systems for row and field crop phenotyping: A Review. European Journal of Agronomy. 70:112-123.

Yin, C., S.I. Downey, N.L. Klages-Mundt, S. Ramachandran, X. Chen, L.J. Szabo, M. Pumphrey*, and S.H. Hulbert. 2015. Identification of promising host-induced silencing targets among genes preferentially transcribed in haustoria of Puccinia. BMC Genomics. 16:579.

Olivera, P., M. Newcomb, L.J. Szabo, M. Rouse, J. Johnson, S. Gale, D.G. Luster, D. Hodson, J.A. Cox, L. Burgin, C.A. Gilligan, M. Patpour, A.F. Justesen, M.S. Hovmøller, G. Woldeab, E. Hailu, B. Hundie, K. Tadesse, M. Pumphrey, R.P. Singh, and Y. Jin. 2015. Phenotypic and genotypic characterization of race TKTTF of Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici that caused a wheat stem rust epidemic in southern Ethiopia in 2013/14.  Phytopathology. 105:917-928.

Maccaferri M.*, J. Zhang*, P. Bulli*, Z. Abate, S. Chao, D. Cantu, E. Bossolini, X. Chen, M. Pumphrey, and J. Dubcovsky. 2015. A Genome-Wide Association Study (GWAS) of resistance to stripe rust (Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici) in a worldwide collection of hexaploid spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics.  5:449-465. *First three authors contributed equally.

Sherman, J.D., N.K. Blake, J.M. Martin, K.D. Kephart, J. Smith, D.R. Clark, M.L. Hofland, D.K. Weaver, S.P. Lanning, H.-Y. Heo, M. Pumphrey*, J. Chen, and L.E. Talbert. 2015. Agronomic Impact of a Stem Solidness Gene in Near-Isogenic Lines of Wheat. Crop Science. 55:514-520.


More publications

News Articles

Meet Ryan, WSU’s Elite New Wheat for the Noodle Market

Ryan, the newest spring wheat variety from Washington State University, is winning over Northwest farmers and grain buyers across the Pacific, thanks to its surprising ability to create an outstanding fresh noodle.

“Ryan has hit harder and generated way more interest than anything I’ve done before,” said Mike Pumphrey, WSU’s O.A. Vogel Endowed Chair of Spring Wheat Breeding and Genetics. “What sets Ryan apart is its quite remarkable noodle quality.”


Best and Brightest of CAHNRS Honored at 2019 Faculty & Staff Awards

Early Career Excellence Award: Mike Pumphrey, Associate Professor, Crop and Soil Sciences; O.A. Vogel Endowed Chair of Spring Wheat Breeding and Genetics.

Developing resilient, high-quality spring wheat varieties for diverse Northwest production environments, Pumphrey has released eight wheat varieties since 2012, which account for approximately 60 percent of spring wheat production acres in Washington state. He has active research, funded by diverse sources, focused on genetic understanding and improvement of resistance to challenges such as stripe rust and Hessian fly, as well as stable falling numbers, improved wheat quality, and better understanding of yield-related traits. He currently teaches an undergraduate course in Crop Growth and Development, and a graduate course in Advanced Plant Breeding.


New WSU Soft White Spring Wheat Ryan in High Demand

Seed for a high-yielding new soft white spring wheat variety is in short supply this year, dealers say.

Geoff Schulz, seed operations manager for HighLine Grain Growers in Reardan, Wash., said he’s been sold out of Washington State University’s new soft white spring wheat Ryan for six weeks. He gets calls every day from farmers and other seed companies looking for Ryan and another WSU soft white spring, Seahawk.

Many of the calls come from irrigated farmers who usually plant dark northern spring wheat, he said.

“I could have sold four times as much Ryan as what I had out there, and I thought I was swimming in it,” he said.

WSU’s spring wheat breeder, Mike Pumphrey, pointed to Ryan as the highest-yielding soft white spring wheat in intermediate or high rainfall zone trials in recent years.


Novel Gene Resists Toxic Wheat Disease that Costs Billions

PULLMAN, Wash. – Scientists at Washington State University and Kansas State University have isolated and cloned a gene that provides resistance to Fusarium head blight, or wheat scab, a crippling disease that caused $7.6 billion in losses in U.S. wheat fields between 1993 and 2001.


Mike Pumphrey Received 2015 BGRI Mentor Award

Sydney, Australia — Michael ‘Mike’ Pumphrey, associate professor of wheat breeding and genetics at Washington State University (WSU), was awarded the 2015 Jeanie Borlaug Laube Women in Triticum Mentor Award during the 2015 Borlaug Global Rust Initiative (BGRI) Technical Workshop in Sydney, Australia, on September 19, 2015.


WSU Partners with Industry to Market New Wheat Variety

PULLMAN, Wash. – Washington State University will join forces with AgriPro, a division of Syngenta Cereals, to market a new variety of hard white spring wheat known as Dayn.


New WSU Weather Stations Provide Wheat Data

PROSSER, Wash. – Four new weather stations will provide wheat farmers and breeders with insights into the influence of weather patterns on wheat production and yields in eastern Washington.


High Technology Meets Fields of Wheat

Arron Carter and Mike Pumphrey are two research scientists at Washington State University who are doing work in dusty wheat fields that is being transformed by technology.


Fundraiser, New Wheat Variety Honor Late WSU Graduate Student

PULLMAN, Wash. – Just 18 months after her premature death from cancer in December 2010, Washington State University graduate student Virginia Gale Lee’s dream of making a difference in the world is beginning to come true.

Friends, family and colleagues of Lee gathered Thursday evening to honor her memory with the second annual Dr. Virginia Lee “Change the World” Fellowship Fundraiser. The event raised nearly $5,000, bringing the fellowship endowment to $80,000, more than half of the university’s goal for the fund.


Cereal stem rust widespread in eastern Washington, north Idaho

SPOKANE, Wash. – Harvest is in full swing across eastern Washington and northern Idaho. Farmers are optimistic about spring wheat and barley yields following unusually high rainfall during the summer.