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  Home > Graduate Programs and Degrees Offered > Comparative and Molecular Biosciences > CMB Faculty > Kent Reed

Kent Reed


295 Animal Science/Veterinary Medicine

1988 Fitch Avenue

University of Minnesota

St. Paul, MN 55108






B.S., University of Minnesota
M.S., Fort Hays State University
Ph.D., Texas A&M University
Post-Doctoral, University of Rochester, University of WisconsinMilwaukee


Research Interests

My research is dedicated to the application of molecular and cytogenetic approaches to the study of genomics, immunogenetics and evolution.  I have broad training in genetics, evolutionary biology and molecular biology with 12 years of experience working in avian genomics and poultry science.  My laboratory has led the effort to develop genetic resources for the turkey, culminating in a medium density genetic linkage map in support of the recent assembly and analysis of a draft genome sequence.  We are part of an ongoing effort to complete the sequence of the turkey genome using next-generation sequencing.  Additional research is directed towards the application of these genomic resources for collaborative functional investigations in muscle physiology, immunology and toxicology.  Projects have included a comprehensive approach to investigation of muscle function and development as it relates to meat production and an examination of gene expression associated with cardiomyopathy (Round Heart Disease).  A second project focuses on the structure and evolution of the turkey major histocompatibility complex (MHC).  The main objectives of this project are to sequence the turkey MHC; identify important haplotypes; develop and trial assays for genetic testing of commercial and experimental populations; and explore expression of key genes.  Our efforts have made the turkey one of the better characterized avian species at the MHC.  We are currently using RNA-seq approaches to better understand the metabolic and immunological responses of turkey to probiotic and aflatoxin exposure.  These studies are aimed at mitigating the effects of mycotoxin contaminants in feed.

Selected Publications 

(For a comprehensive list of  Dr. Reed's recent publications, refer to PubMed, a service provided by the National Library of Medicine.)


Kim JE, Bauer MM, Mendoza KM, Reed KM, and, Coulombe RA, Jr. 2010. Comparative genomics identifies new alpha class genes within the avian glutathione S-transferase gene cluster. Gene, 452:45-53 Epub 10 November 2009.


Reed KM, Bauer MM, Mendoza KM, and Armien AG. 2010. A candidate gene for choanal atresia in alpaca. Genome, 53:224-230.


Chaves LD, Faile GM, Kreuth SB, Hendrickson JA, and Reed KM. 2010 Haplotype variation, recombination, and gene conversion within the MHC-B of the turkey. Immunogenetics, 62:465-477. Epub 12 May 2010.


Dalloul RA, Long JA, Zimin AV, Aslam L, Beal K, Blomberg LA, Bouffard P, Burt DW, Crasta O, Crooijmans RP, Cooper K, Coulombe RA, De S, Delany ME, Dodgson JB, Dong JJ, Evans C, Frederickson KM, Flicek P, Florea L, Folkerts O, Groenen MA, Harkins TT, Herrero J, Hoffmann S, Megens HJ, Jiang A, de Jong P, Kaiser P, Kim H, Kim KW, Kim S, Langenberger D, Lee MK, Lee T, Mane S, Marcais G, Marz M, McElroy AP, Modise T, Nefedov M, Notredame C, Paton IR, Payne WS, Pertea G, Prickett D, Puiu D, Qioa D, Raineri E, Ruffier M, Salzberg SL, Schatz MC, Scheuring C, Schmidt CJ, Schroeder S, Searle SM, Smith EJ, Smith J, Sonstegard TS, Stadler PF, Tafer H, Tu ZJ, Van Tassell CP, Vilella AJ, Williams KP, Yorke JA, Zhang L, Zhang HB, Zhang X, Zhang Y, and Reed KM. 2010. Multi-platform next-generation sequencing of the domestic turkey (Meleagris gallopavo): genome assembly and analysis. PLoS Biol 2010 Sep 7;8(9). pii: e1000475.


Chaves LD, Kreuth SB, Bauer MM, and Reed KM. 2011. Sequence of a turkey BAC clone identifies MHC class III orthologs and supports ancient origins of immunological gene clusters. Cytogenet Genome Res. 132:55-63. Epub 2010 Aug 24.


Sporer KRB, Chiang W, Tempelman RJ, Ernst CW, Reed KM, Velleman SG, Strasburg GM. 2011. Characterization of a 6K oligonucleotide turkey skeletal muscle microarray to profile gene expression changes during muscle development. Animal Genet. 42:75-82. Epub 26 May 2010.


Bauer MM and Reed KM. 2011. Extended sequence of the turkey MHC B-locus sequence variation in the highly polymorphic B-G loci. Immunogenetics, 63:209-221. Epub 5 January 2011.


Sporer KRB, Tempelman RJ, Ernst CW, Reed KM, Velleman SG, and Strasburg GM. 2011. Transcriptional profiling identifies differentially expressed genes in developing turkey skeletal muscle. BMC Genomics, 12:143.


Chaves LD, Faile GM, Hendrickson, JA, Mock K, and Reed KM. 2011. A locus-wide approach to assessing variation in the avian MHC: The B-locus of the wild turkey. Heredity, 107:40-49. Epub 22 December 22 2010; doi:10.1038/hdy.2010.153.


Reed KM, Bauer MM, Monson MS, Chaves LD, Benoit B, O'Hare TH, and Delany ME. 2011. Defining the turkey MHC: Identification of expressed class I and class II-like genes independent of the B-locus. Immunogenetics, 63:753-771. Epub 2011 Jun 28.


Nierobisz LS, Sporer KRB, Strasburg GM, Reed KM, Velleman SG, Ashwell CM, Felts JV, and PE Mozdziak. 2011. Differential expression of genes characterizing myofiber phenotype. Animal Genetics, 43:298-308. Epub 19 September 2011 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2052.2011.02249.x.


Reed KM, Bauer MM, Monson MS, Chaves LD. 2011. The turkey MHC: sequence, haplotype diversity, and gene expression. In: Turkey production and Health: An Update. Proceedings of the 6th International Meeting of the Working Group 10 (Turkey) of WPSA (Ed. Hafez, H.M), Berlin. Mensch & Buch Verlag ISBN. 978-3-86387-094-2. pp. 36 -52.


Reed KM and Dalloul RA. 2011. The turkey genome sequence: Implications for enhancing turkey biology. In: Turkey production and Health: An Update. Proceedings of the 6th International Meeting of the Working Group 10 (Turkey) of WPSA (Ed. Hafez, H.M), Berlin. Mensch & Buch Verlag ISBN. 978-3-86387-094-2. pp.23-29.


Velleman SG, Sporer KRB, Ernst CW, Reed KM, and Strasburg GM. 2012. Versican, matrix Gla protein, and death-associated protein expression affect muscle satellite cell proliferation and differentiation. Poultry Science, 91:1964-1973.


Mendoza KM, Sporer KRB, Strasburg GM, Tempelman RJ, Frame D, Velleman SG, and Reed KM. Differential cardiac gene expression in turkeys selected for increased body weight. J. Vet Sci Technol, in press.

Current Funding

"Reference genome sequence for the turkey, Meleagris gallopavo," AFRI, USDA.

"The turkey MHC: Sequence, haplotype structure and gene expression," CSREES, USDA.

"Application of new sequencing technologies to investigate locus remodeling and CNV in the MHC of turkey." MAES

"The role of Mx protein in the innate immune response of the turkey." Signature Program Pilot Grant.

"Elucidating the complexities of Escherichia coli peritonitis in commercial laying hens." Signature Program Pilot Grant.

"RNA-Seq in horse and turkey transcriptomics." MAES.

Current Students

Melissa Monson, PhD Student, Gene expression in the turkey MHC.









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