Pádraic J. Flood
Pádraic Flood is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab of Angela Hancock at the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research in Cologne, Germany specializing in population and quantitative genetics, photosynthesis, and natural genetic variation. He completed his BSc. at University College Dublin Ireland and his PhD at Wageningen University in the Netherlands.
Flood’s research is broadly on how plants adapt to different environments. To address this basic question, he uses a combination of quantitative and population genetics, fieldwork, and high-throughput phenotyping.
Currently, he is focused on how African populations of the model plant species Arabidopsis thaliana have adapted to unique and challenging environments ranging from tropical mountains to semi-deserts. This entails a lot of fieldwork to find and sample populations in the field and then bring them back where they can be grown in controlled conditions and compared to standard reference lines.
When not in the field, greenhouse, lab or behind the computer, Flood is active in communicating science directly to the public. This is something he finds both fun and important, especially in our current climate of fake news and alternative facts. It’s his belief that now, more than ever, scientists need to engage with the public.