Zachary Lippman

Zachary Lippman

Professor & HHMI Investigator
Jacob Goldfield Professor of Genetics
Director of Graduate Studies

Ph.D., Watson School of Biological Sciences at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, 2004

lippman@cshl.edu | 516-367-8897

Lippman Lab Website  

My research team studies when and where, and how many branches, flowers, and fruits are produced on plants. All of plant development depends on small groups of stem cells at the tips of shoots known as meristems. By studying the genes that control stem cell production and maturation over space and time, within and between different developmental contexts, we are able to manipulate plant architecture and reproduction to improve crop yields.

Zachary Lippman’s research program integrates development, genetics, genomics, and genome editing to uncover, explore, and exploit the mechanisms that determine how plant stem cells become shoots and flowers. The lab takes advantage of extensive natural and engineered genetic variation that influence vegetative and inflorescence production and architecture in tomato and related nightshade (Solanaceae) species (e.g. potato, pepper, groundcherry) to explore how differences in these processes explain the remarkable diversity in the architectures of these shoot systems found in nature and agriculture. Recent discoveries on the genes and networks underlying this diversity have led to broader questions on the significance of genomic structural variation, genetic redundancy, gene dosage, and epistasis in development, evolution, domestication, and breeding. By linking these fundamental and applied discoveries, Lippman is developing and applying innovative concepts and tools to accelerate crop improvement.

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Selected Publications

Establishing Physalis as a Solanaceae model system enables genetic reevaluation of the inflated calyx syndrome

21 Oct 2022 | The Plant Cell | 35(1):351-368
He, Jia, Alonge, Michael, Ramakrishnan, Srividya, Benoit, Matthias, Soyk, Sebastian, Reem, Nathan, Hendelman, Anat, Van Eck, Joyce, Schatz, Michael, Lippman, Zachary

Rapid customization of Solanaceae fruit crops for urban agriculture

23 Dec 2019 | Nature Biotechnology | 38:182-188
Kwon, C, Heo, J, Lemmon, Z, Capua, Y, Hutton, S, Van Eck, J, Park, S, Lippman, Z

Revolutions in agriculture chart a course for targeted breeding of old and new crops

5 Sep 2019 | Science | 366(6466)
Eshed, Y, Lippman, Z

Duplication of a domestication locus neutralized a cryptic variant that caused a breeding barrier in tomato

6 May 2019 | Nature Plants | 5(5):471-497
Soyk, S, Lemmon, Z, Sedlazeck, F, Jimenez-Gomez, J, Alonge, M, Hutton, S, Van Eck, J, Schatz, M, Lippman, Z

All Publications

Engineering the future of Physalis grisea: A focus on agricultural challenges, model species status, and applied improvements

2 Jul 2024 | Plants People Planet
Dale, Savanah, Tomaszewski, Elise, Lippman, Zachary, Van Eck, Joyce

Blooming balloons: Searching for mechanisms of the inflated calyx

28 Jun 2024 | Current Opinion in Plant Biology | 81:102595
He, Jia, Van Eck, Joyce, Lippman, Zachary

Evolutionary conservation of receptor compensation for stem cell homeostasis in Solanaceae plants

Jun 2024 | Horticulture Research | 11(6):uhae126
Seo, Myeong-Gyun, Lim, Yoonseo, Hendelman, Anat, Robitaille, Gina, Beak, Hong, Hong, Woo-Jong, Park, Soon, Lippman, Zachary, Park, Young-Joon, Kwon, Choon-Tak

Extreme restructuring of cis-regulatory regions controlling a deeply conserved plant stem cell regulator

4 Mar 2024 | PLoS Genetics | 20(3):e1011174
Ciren, Danielle, Zebell, Sophia, Lippman, Zachary, Hake, Sarah

Convergent evolution of plant prickles is driven by repeated gene co-option over deep time

22 Feb 2024 | bioRxiv
Satterlee, James, Alonso, David, Gramazio, Pietro, Jenike, Katharine, He, Jia, Arrones, Andrea, Villanueva, Gloria, Plazas, Mariola, Ramakrishnan, Srividya, Benoit, Matthias, Gentile, Iacopo, Hendelman, Anat, Shohat, Hagai, Fitzgerald, Blaine, Robitaille, Gina, Green, Yumi, Swartwood, Kerry, Passalacqua, Michael, Gagnon, Edeline, Hilgenhof, Rebecca, Huggins, Trevis, Eizenga, Georgia, Gur, Amit, Rutten, Twan, Stein, Nils, Yao, Shengrui, Bellot, Clement, Bendahmane, Mohammed, Frary, Amy, Knapp, Sandra, Särkinen, Tiina, Gillis, Jesse, Van Eck, Joyce, Schatz, Michael, Eshed, Yuval, Prohens, Jaime, Vilanova, Santiago, Lippman, Zachary

Extreme restructuring of cis-regulatory regions controlling a deeply conserved plant stem cell regulator

20 Dec 2023 | bioRxiv
Ciren, Danielle, Zebell, Sophia, Lippman, Zachary