Dipak Santra

Assistant Professor
Department of Agronomy and Horticulture

Panhandle Research and Extension Center, 4502 Avenue I, Scottsbluff, NE 69361
Phone: 308-632-1244.  Fax: 308-632-1365
E-mail:  dsantra2@unl.edu


  • Ph.D. (1999): University of Pune (India) and Washington State University (USA).
  • M.S. (1992): Assam Agricultural University (India).
  • B.S. (1989): Bidhan Chandra Krishi Viswavidyalaya (India)


The objective is to develop and enhance germplasm and cultivars of new and existing alternative crops for sustainable production under dry land farming conditions in northern High Plains of the USA (western Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, South Dakota and eastern Wyoming) combining biotechnology and traditional breeding methods. Areas of research are:

  • Breeding and genetics of proso millet (Panicum miliaceum L.), Semi-arid legumes (Fenugreek, Pea, Cowpea, Guar bean), Oil-seed crops (Sunflower, Canola, Mustard)
  • Germplasm characterization and utilization
  • Genomics, gene, and QTL mapping
  • Molecular markers and marker-assisted selection (MAS)


To develop and deliver educational programs focused on the establishment of new alternative crops with new uses and markets.


Cultivars (7)

1. Santra D. K., R. Heyduck, D. D. Baltensperger, R. A. Graybosch, L. A. Nelson, G. Frickel, and E. Nielsen 2015. Registration of ‘Plateau' waxy (amylose-free) proso millet. J Plant Registrations. 9: 41-43

2. Baenziger, P. S., Graybosch, R., Regassa, T., Klein, R., Kruger, G., Santra, D., Xu, L., Rose, D., Wegulo, S., Jin, Y., Kolmer, J., Hein, G. L., Chen, M.-s., Bowden, B., Poland, J. 2014. Registration of ‘NE06545' (Husker Genetics Brand Freeman) Hard Red Winter Wheat. J. Plant Registrations. 8:279-284.

3. Graybosch, R., Baenziger, P. S., Santra, D., Regassa, T., Jin, Y., Kolmer, J., Wegulo, S., Bai, G., Amand, P., Chen, X., Seabourn, B., Dowell, F., Bowden, R., Marshall, D. 2014. Release of ‘Matter' waxy (amylose-free) winter wheat. J. Plant Registrations, 8:43-48.

4. Stamm M., D. Auld, A. Barraza, J. Buck, P. Cabot, M. Clausen, C. Godey, W. Her, J. Holman, J. Johnson, R. Kochenower, J. Krall, M. K. O'Neill, C. Pearson, C. Rife, D. K. Santra, J. Sij, W. Spradlin, D. Starner, and W. Wiebold 2012. Registration of ‘Riley' Winter Canola. J. Plant Registrations 6(1): 1-3.

5. Baenziger, P.S., R. A. Graybosch, T. Regassa, L. A. Nelson, R. N. Klein, R. N. Klein, D. K. Santra, D. D. Baltensperger, L. Xu, S. N. Wegulo, Y. Jin, J. Kolmer, M-S. Chen and G. Bai. 2012. Registration of 'NI04421' Wheat. J. Plant Registrations 6(1):54-59.

6. Baenziger, P.S., R. A. Graybosch, T. Regassa, R. N. Klein, D. K. Santra, D. D. Baltensperger, J. M. Krall, L. Xu, S. N. Wegulo, Y. Jin, J. Kolmer, M-S. Chen and G. Bai. 2012. Registration of 'NE01481' Wheat. J. Plant Registrations 6(1):49-53.

7. Baenziger, P.S., R. A. Graybosch, L. A. Nelson, T. Regassa, R. N. Klein, D. D. Baltensperger, D. K. Santra, A. M. H. Ibrahim, W. Berzonsky, J. M. Krall, L. Xu, S. N. Wegulo, M. L. Bernards, Y. Jin, J. Kolmer, J. H. Hatchett, Ming-Shun Chen, and Guihua Bai. 2011. Registration of 'NH03614 CL' Wheat. J. Plant Registrations 5(1):75-80.

Book chapter

1. Dwivedi S, Upadhaya H, Senthilvel S, Hash C, Fukunaga K, Diao X, Santra D, Baltensperger D,  and Prasad M (2012) Millets: genetic and genomic resources. In: Janick J (ed), Plant Breeding Reviews. Vol. 35 First Edition. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., USA, pp 247-375.

Refereed journal articles: 35

1. Islam, M.A., A. Garcia y Garcia, R. Groose, U. Norton, D. K. Santra, R. Sivanpillai, J. Ritten, J. Norton, S. Paisley, J. Krall, and A. Homer (2013). Legume adoption practices in the Central Great Plains of the United States: Economic and environmental benefits in face of climate change. J. Soil and Water Conservation (under revision).

2. Pavlista, A., Baltensperger, D., Santra, D., Hergert, G. W., Knox, S. (2014). Gibberellic acid promotes early growth of winter wheat and rye. American J. Plant Sci. 5:2984-2996.

3. Rajput S., T. Plyler-Harveson, and D.K. Santra (2013): Development and characterization of SSR markers in proso millet (Panicum milliaceum L.) based switch grass genomics. American J. Plant Sci. 5:175-186.

4. Rose, D.J. and D. K. Santra (2013). Proso millet (Panicum miliaceum) starch fermentation for fuel ethanol production. Industrial Crops and Products. 43:602-605.

5. Khound R., M. Santra, P. S. Baenziger and D. K. Santra (2013). Effect of Cold-mediated Pretreatment on Microspore Culture in Spring and Winter Wheat. American J. Plant Sci. 4:2259-2264.

6. Pavlista A. D., D. K. Santra and D. D. Baltensperger (2013): Bioassay of Winter Wheat for Gibberellic Acid Sensitivity. American J. Plant Sci. 4:2015-2022.

7. Pavlista A.D., G.W. Hergert, J. Schild, and D.K. Santra (2013). Gibberellic acid improvement of direct harvest of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) cultivars Poncho and Matterhorn. HortTechnology. 23:282-287.

8. Das B.K., M. Santra, A. Hazen, P. S. Baenziger, and D. K. Santra (2012). Microspore culture for production of doubled haploid (DH) plants of Nebraskan winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cultivars. Annual Wheat Newsletter. 58:242-244.

9. Pavlista A.P., D. K. Santra, J.A. Schild, and G.H. Hergert (2012). Gibberellic Acid Sensitivity among Common Bean Cultivars (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). HORTSCIENCE 47(5):637–642. 2012.

10. Harveson, R., D.K. Santra, A.D. Pavlista, M.L. Putnam, and M. Curtis (2011). A New Report of Camelina Downy Mildew in the High Plains of the United States. Plant Health Progress (doi:10.1094/PHP-2011-1014-01-BR).

11. Baenziger P.S., I. Salah, R. C. Little, D. K. Santra, T. Regassa, M. Y. Wang (2011) Structuring an Efficient Organic Wheat Breeding Program. Sustainability 3:1190-1205.

12. Pavlista, A.D., D.K. Santra, T. Isbell, D.D. Baltensperger, G. H. Hergert, J. Krall, A. Mesbach, J. Johnson, M. O'Neil, R. Aiken, and A. Berrada (2011). Adaptability of Irrigated Spring Canola Oil Production to the US High Plains. Industrial Crops and Products 33:165-169.

13. Santra M., N. Ankrah, D. K. Santra and K. K. Kidwell (2012). An Improved Wheat Microspore Culture Technique for the Production of Doubled Haploid Plants. Crop Science. 52:1-7.

14. Carter A.H., D.K. Santra, K.K. Kidwell (2012). Assessment of the effects of the Gpc-B1 allele on senescence rate, grain protein concentration and micronutrient content in hard red spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) from the Pacific Northwest Region of the U.S.A. Plant Breeding (doi:10.1111/j.1439-0523.2011.01900.x)

15. Santra D. K., M. Santra, R.E. Allan, K.G. Campbell, and K.K. Kidwell. 2009. Vrn-1 allele composition of spring wheat germplasm from the Pacific Northwest region of the U.S. based on genetic segregation and DNA marker analyses.  Plant Breeding 128:576-584.

16. Murphy L. R., D. K. Santra, K. K. Kidwell, G. P. Yan, X. M. Chen, and K. G. Campbell. 2009. Linkage maps of wheat stripe rust resistance genes Yr5 and Yr15 for use in marker assisted selection. Crop Science 49:1786-1790.

17. Santra D. K., M. Santra, X. Chen, K.G. Campbell, and K.K. Kidwell. 2008. Mapping QTL for high temperature, adult plant resistance to stripe rusts in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.).  Theoretical and Applied Genetics 117:793-802.

18. Leonard, J., C. Watson, A. Carter, J. Hansen, R. Zemetra, D. K. Santra, K. Campbell, and O. Riera-Lizarazu. 2007. Identification of a candidate gene for the wheat endopeptidase Ep-D1 locus and two other STS markers linked to the eyespot resistance gene Pch1. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 116:261-270.

19. Santra D.K., C. Watt, L. Little, K.K. Kidwell and K.G. Campbell. 2006.  Comparison of a modified assay method for the endopeptidase marker Ep-D1b with the STS marker XustSSR2001-7DL for strawbreaker foot rot resistance in wheat. Plant Breeding 125:13-18.

20. Santra M., D.K. Santra, V.S. Rao, S.P. Taware and S.A. Tamhankar. 2005.  Inheritance of ß-carotene concentration in durum wheat (Triticum turgidum ssp. durum). Euphytica 144:215-221.

21. Bhattacharyya M.K., N.N. Narayanan, H. Gao, D.K. Santra, S.S. Salimath, T.  Kasuga, Y. Liu, B. Espinosa, L. Ellison, L. Marek, R. Shoemaker, M. Gijzen and R.I. Buzzell. 2005.  Identification of a large cluster of coiled coil-nucleotide binding site–leucine rich repeat-type genes from the Rps1 region containing Phytophthora resistance genes in soybean. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 111:75–86.

22. Barve M.P., D.K. Santra, P.K. Ranjekar and V.S. Gupta 2004.  Genetic diversity analysis of a worldwide collection of Ascochyta rabiei isolates using sequence tagged micro satellite markers. World J. of Microbiology and Biotechnology. 20:735-741.

23. Ammiraju J.S.S., B.B. Dholakia, G. Jawedkar, D.K. Santra, M.S. Roder, H. Singh, M.D. Lagu, H.S. Dhaliwal, V.S. Rao, P.K. Ranjekar and V.S. Gupta. 2004.  Identification of chromosomal regions governing grain shape and size in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). J. Genetics & Breeding 58:91-100.

24. Santra D. K., D. Sandhu, T. Tai and M. K. Bhattacharyya. 2003. Construction and characterization of a soybean yeast artificial chromosome library and identification of clones for Rps6 region. Functional and Integrative Genomics. 3:153-159.

25. Hüttel B., D.K. Santra. F.J. Muehlbauer and G. Kahl. 2002.  Resistance gene analogues of chickpea (Cicer arietinum L): Isolation, genetic mapping and association with Fusarium resistance gene cluster. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 105:479-490.

26. Ammiraju J.S.S., B.B. Dholakia, G. Jawdekar, D.K. Santra, V.S. Gupta, M.S. Röder, H. Singh, M.D. Lagu, H.S. Dhaliwal, V.S. Rao, and P.K. Ranjekar. 2002.  Inheritance and identification of DNA markers associated with yellow berry tolerance in wheat (Triticum aestivum L). Euphytica 123:229-233.

27. Ammiraju J.S.S., B.B. Dholakia, D.K. Santra, H. Singh, M.D. Lagu, S.A. Tamhankar, H.S. Dhaliwal, V.S. Rao, V.S. Gupta and P.K. Ranjekar. 2001.  Identification of inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers associated with seed size in wheat Theoretical and Applied Genetics 102:726-732.

28. Galande A., H. Singh, M.D. Lagu, D.K. Santra, V.S. Gupta, H.S. Dhaliwal and P.K. Ranjekar. 2001.  PCR based DNA markers for bread making quality in hexaploid wheat. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 103:601-606.

29. Dholakia B.B, J.S.S. Ammiraju, D. K. Santra, H. Singh, M.V. Katti, M.D. Lagu, S.A. Tamhankar, V.S. Rao, V.S. Gupta, H.S. Dhaliwal and P.K. Ranjekar. 2001.  Molecular marker analysis of protein content using PCR based markers in wheat. Biochemical Genetics 39:325-338.

30. Winter P., A.M. Benko-Iseppon, B. Hüttel, M.B. Ratnaparkhe, A. Tullu, G. Sonnante, T. Pfaff, M. Tekeoglu, D.K. Santra, V.J. Sant, P.N. Rajesh, G. Kahl, F.J. Muehlbauer. 2000.  A linkage map of chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) genome based on recombinant inbred lines from C. arietinum x C. reticulatum cross: Localization of resistance genes for fusarium wilt races 4 and 5. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 101:1155-1163.

31. Santra D.K., M. Tekeoglu, M.B. Ratnaparkhe, W.J. Kaiser and F.J. Muehlbauer. 2000.  Identification and mapping QTL conferring resistance to ascochyta blight in chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.). Crop Science 40:1606-1612.

32. Santra D.K., G. Singh, W.J. Kaiser, V.S. Gupta, P.K. Ranjekar, and F.J. Muehlbauer. 2000.  Molecular analysis of Ascochyta rabiei (Pass.) Labr., the pathogen of ascochyta blight in chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.). Theoretical and Applied Genetics 102:676-682.

33. Tekeoglu M., D.K. Santra, W.J.Kaiser, and F.J. Muehlbauer. 2000. Inheritance of ascochyta blight resistance in three recombinant inbred line populations of chickpea. Crop Science 40:1251-1256.

34. Santra D.K., R. Borah, P. Sen and P.C. Deka 2000. Accumulation of storage proteins in developing grains of high and medium protein rice varieties and their characterization. Oryza 37:198-201.

35. Ratnaparkhe M.B., D.K. Santra, A. Tullu and F.J. Muehlbauer. 1998.  Inheritance of inter-simple sequence repeat polymorphism and their linkage with fusarium wilt resistance gene in chickpea. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 96:348-353.

Extension articles (Peer-reviewed): 7

1. Santra D.K. (2013): Proso millet varieties for western Nebraska western Nebraska. University of Nebraska-Lincoln NebGuide. G2219 (http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/live/g2219/build/g2219.pdf)

2. Santra D.K. and D. Rose (2013): Alternative uses of proso millet. University of Nebraska-Lincoln NebGuide G2218 (http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/live/g2218/build/g2218.pdf).

3. Pavlista A.D., and D. K. Santra (2013): Planting winter wheat in dry soil. University of Nebraska-Lincoln NebGuide. G2211 (http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/live/g2211/build/g2211.pdf).

4. Little R.R.S., T. Regassa, T. M. Hansen, D.K. Santra, S. Wegulo, P. S. Baenziger (2013): Selecting Winter Wheat Cultivars for Organic Production. University of Nebraska-Lincoln NebGuide G2206 (http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/live/g2206/build/g2206.pdf).

5. Hergert G. and D. K. Santra. 2009. Fertilizing proso millet. University of Nebraska-Lincoln NebGuide G1945. http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/sendIt/g1945.pdf.

6. Johnson J., G. H. Hergert, D. K. Santra, and A. D. Pavlista. (2013). Agriculture in Nebraska Panhandle. University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Circular EC864.

7. Yonts, C.D., D.J. Lyon, J.A. Smith, R.M. Harveson, G.W. Hergert, G.L. Hein, and D.K. Santra. (2010) Producing Irrigated Winter Wheat. University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Circular EC731. http://ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/live/ec731/build/ec731.pdf.


  • Crop Science Society of America.
  • Agronomic Society of America
  • American Association of Advancement of Science.
  • Official reviewer Theoretical and Applied Genetics, Crop Science, Industrial Crops and Products


  • China – Invited presentation
  • Korea – Invited presentation
  • Greece – Submitted conference presentation
  • Chile – Submitted conference presentation
  • India – Submitted conference presentation