Nicholas (Nick) Tinker, Ph.D.

Image Nicholas Tinker
Research Scientist

Bioinformatics and genomics research for improvement of oat and other cereal crops.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Current research and/or projects

  • Bioinformatics support for crop genomics
  • Genomics and Bioinformatics for Oat Improvement

Key publications

Latta, R.G., W.A. Bekele, C.P. Wight and N.A. Tinker. 2019. Comparative linkage mapping of diploid, tetraploid, and hexaploid Avena species suggests extensive chromosome rearrangement in ancestral diploids. Scientific Reports 9: 12298. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-48639-7.

Carlson, M.O., G. Montilla-Bascon, O.A. Hoekenga, N.A. Tinker, J. Poland, M. Baseggio, M.E. Sorrells, J.-L. Jannink, M.A. Gore and T.H. Yeats. 2019. Multivariate Genome-Wide Association Analyses Reveal the Genetic Basis of Seed Fatty Acid Composition in Oat (Avena sativa L.). G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics 9: 2963-2975. DOI: 10.1534/g3.119.400228.

Blake, V.C., M.R. Woodhouse, G.R. Lazo, S.G. Odell, C.P. Wight, N.A. Tinker, Y. Wang, Y.Q. Gu, C.L. Birkett, J.-L. Jannink, D. Matthews, D.L. Hane, S. Michel, E. Yao and T.Z. Sen. 2019. GrainGenes: Centralized Small Grain Resources and Digital Platform for Geneticists and Breeders. Database 2019: baz065. DOI:

Sunstrum, F.G., W.A. Bekele, C.P. Wight, W. Yan, Y. Chen and N.A. Tinker. 2019. A genetic linkage map in southern-by-spring oat identifies multiple QTLs for adaptation and rust resistance. Plant Breeding 138: 82-94. DOI: 10.1111/pbr.12666.

Yan, W., N.A. Tinker, W.A. Bekele, J. Mitchell Fetch and J. Fregeau-Reid. 2019. Theoretical Unification and Practical Integration of Conventional Methods and Genomic Selection in Plant Breeding. Crop Breeding, Genetics and Genomics 1: e190003. DOI:

Al-Hajaj, N., G.W. Peterson, C. Horbach, K. Al-Shamaa, N.A. Tinker and Y.-B. Fu. 2018. Genotyping-by-sequencing empowered genetic diversity analysis of Jordanian oat wild relative Avena sterilis. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 65: 2069–2082. DOI: 10.1007/s10722-018-0674-x.

Bekele, W.A., C.P. Wight, S. Chao, C.J. Howarth and N.A. Tinker. 2018. Haplotype based genotyping-by-sequencing in oat genome research. Plant Biotechnology Journal 16: 1452-1463. DOI: 10.1111/pbi.12888.

Luo, X., N.A. Tinker, Y. Zhou, J. Liu, W. Wan and L. Chen. 2018. Chromosomal distributions of oligo-Am1 and (TTG)6 trinucleotide and their utilization in genome association analysis of sixteen Avena species. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 65: 1625–1635. DOI: 10.1007/s10722-018-0639-0.

Luo, X., N.A. Tinker, Y. Zhou, J. Liu, W. Wan and L. Chen. 2018. A comparative cytogenetic study of 17 Avena species using Am1 and (GAA)6 oligonucleotide FISH probes. Acta Physiologiae Plantarum 40: 145. DOI: 10.1007/s11738-018-2721-9.

Peng, Y., P. Zhou, J. Zhao, J. Li, S. Lai, N.A. Tinker, S. Liao and H. Yan. 2018. Phylogenetic relationships in genus Avena based on the nuclear Pgk1 gene. PLOS One 13. DOI:

Zhao, J., X. Tang, C.P. Wight, N.A. Tinker, Y. Jiang, H. Yan, J. Ma, X.-J. Lan, Y.-M. Wei, C. Ren, G. Chen and Y. Peng. 2018. Genetic Mapping and a New PCR-based Marker Linked to a Dwarfing Gene in Oat (Avena sativa L.). Genome 61: 497-503. DOI:

Bjørnstad, Å., X. He, S. Tekle, K. Klos, Y.F. Huang, N.A. Tinker, Y. Dong and H. Skinnes. 2017. Genetic variation and associations involving Fusarium head blight and deoxynivalenol accumulation in cultivated oat (Avena sativa L.). Plant Breeding 136: 620-636. DOI: 10.1111/pbr.12502.

Esvelt Klos, K., B.A. Yimer, E.M. Babiker, A.D. Beattie, J.M. Bonman, M.L. Carson, J. Chong, S.A. Harrison, A. Ibrahim, F.L. Kolb, C.A. McCartney, M. McMullen, J. Mitchell Fetch, M. Mohammadi, J.P. Murphy and N.A. Tinker. 2017. Genome-wide association mapping of crown rust resistance in oat elite germplasm. The Plant Genome 10(12). DOI: 10.3835/plantgenome2016.10.0107.

Luo, X., N.A. Tinker, Y.-H. Zhou, C.P. Wight, J. Liu, W. Wan, L. Chen and Y. Peng. 2017. Genomic relationships among sixteen Avena species based on (ACT) 6 trinucleotide repeat FISH. Genome 61: 63-70. DOI: 10.1139/gen-2017-0132.

Chaffin, A.S., Y.-F. Huang, S. Smith, W.A. Bekele, E. Babiker, B.N. Gnanesh, B.J. Foresman, S.G. Blanchard, J.J. Jay, R.W. Reid, C.P. Wight, S. Chao, R. Oliver, E. Islamovic, F.L. Kolb, C. McCartney, J.W. Mitchell Fetch, A.D. Beattie, Å. Bjørnstad, J.M. Bonman, T. Langdon, C.J. Howarth, C.R. Brouwer, E.N. Jellen, K. Esvelt Klos, J.A. Poland, T.-F. Hseih, R. Brown, E. Jackson, J.A. Schlueter and N.A. Tinker. 2016. A consensus map in cultivated hexaploid oat reveals conserved grass synteny with substantial sub-genome rearrangement. The Plant Genome 9. DOI: 10.3835/plantgenome2015.10.0102.

Esvelt Klos, K., Y.-F. Huang, W.A. Bekele, D.E. Obert, E. Babiker, A.D. Beattie, Å. Bjørnstad, J.M. Bonman, M.L. Carson, S. Chao, B.N. Gnanesh, I. Griffiths, S.A. Harrison, C.J. Howarth, G. Hu, A. Ibrahim, E. Islamovic, E. Jackson, J.L. Jannink, F.L. Kolb, M.S. McMullen, J.W. Mitchell Fetch, J.P. Murphy, H.W. Ohm, H.W. Rines, B.G. Rossnagel, J.A. Schlueter, M.E. Sorrells, C.P. Wight, W. Yan and N.A. Tinker. 2016. Population genomics related to adaptation in elite oat germplasm. The Plant Genome 9: 2. DOI: 10.3835/plantgenome2015.10.0103.

Gou, L., J. Hattori, G. Fedak, M. Balcerzak, A. Sharpe, P. Visendi, D. Edwards, N. Tinker, Y. Wei, G. Chen and T. Ouellet. 2016. Development and validation of Thinopyrum elongatum - expressed molecular markers specific for the long arm of chromosome 7E. Crop Science 56: 354-364. DOI: 10.2135/cropsci2015.03.0184.

Tinker, N.A., W.A. Bekele and J. Hattori. 2016. Haplotag: software for haplotype-based genotyping-by-sequencing analysis. G3: Genes Genomes Genetics 6: 857-863. DOI: 10.1534/g3.115.024596.

Tinker, N.A. and E.R. Cober. 2016. Plant Breeding. In: J. C. Neal Stewart, editor Plant Biotechnology and Genetics: Principles, Techniques and Applications, 2nd edition. Wiley and Sons, New York. ISBN: 978-1-118-82012-4.

Yan, H., S.L. Martin, W.A. Bekele, R.G. Latta, A. Diederichsen, Y. Peng and N.A. Tinker. 2016. Genome size variation in the genus Avena. Genome 59: 209–220. DOI: 10.1139/gen-2015-0132.

Yan, H., W.A. Bekele, C.P. Wight, Y. Peng, T. Langdon, R.G. Latta, Y.-B. Fu, A. Diederichsen, C.J. Howarth, E.N. Jellen, B. Boyle, Y. Wei and N.A. Tinker. 2016. High-density marker profiling confirms ancestral genomes of Avena species and identifies D-genome chromosomes of hexaploid oat. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 129: 2133–2149. DOI: 10.1007/s00122-016-2762-7.

Luo, X., N.A. Tinker, H. Zhang, C.P. Wight, H. Kang, X. Fan, Y. Wang, L. Sha and Y. Zhou. 2015. Centromeric position and genomic allocation of a repetitive sequence isolated from chromosome 18D of hexaploid oat, Avena sativa L. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 62: 1-4. DOI: 10.1007/s10722-014-0170-x.

Huang, Y.F., J.A. Poland, C.P. Wight, E.W. Jackson and N.A. Tinker. 2014. Using genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) for genomic discovery in cultivated oat. PLoS ONE 9: e102448. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0102448.

Kim, K.-S., N.A. Tinker and M.A. Newell. 2014. Improvement of Oat as a Winter Forage Crop in the Southern United States. Crop Sci. 54: 1-11. DOI: 10.2135/cropsci2013.07.0505.

Tinker, N.A., S. Chao, G.R. Lazo, R.E. Oliver, Y.-F. Huang, J.A. Poland, E.N. Jellen, P.J. Maughan, A. Kilian and E.W. Jackson. 2014. A SNP genotyping array for hexaploid oat. The Plant Genome 7. DOI: 10.3835/plantgenome2014.03.0010.

Asoro, F.G., M.A. Newell, W.D. Beavis, M.P. Scott, N.A. Tinker and J.-L. Jannink. 2013. Genomic, marker-assisted, and pedigree-BLUP selection methods for β-glucan concentration in elite oat. Crop Sci. 53: 1894-1906. DOI: 10.2135/cropsci2012.09.0526.

Lamara, M., L. Zhang, S. Marchand, N.A. Tinker and F. Belzile. 2013. Comparative analysis of genetic diversity in Canadian barley assessed by SSR, DArT and pedigree data. Genome 56: 351-358. DOI: 10.1139/gen-2013-0048.

Luo, X., N.A. Tinker, Y. Jiang, P. Xuan, H. Zhang and Y. Zhou. 2013. Suitable dose of 60 Co γ-ray for mutation in Roegneria seeds. Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry: 1-6. DOI: 10.1007/s10967-012-1888-6.

Oliver, R.E., N.A. Tinker, G.R. Lazo, S. Chao, E.N. Jellen, M.L. Carson, H.W. Rines, D.E. Obert, J.D. Lutz, I. Shackelford, A.B. Korol, C.P. Wight, K.M. Gardner, J. Hattori, A.D. Beattie, Å. Bjørnstad, J.M. Bonman, J.-L. Jannink, M.E. Sorrells, G.L. Brown-Guedira, J.W. Mitchell Fetch, S.A. Harrison, C.J. Howarth, A. Ibrahim, F.L. Kolb, M.S. McMullen, J.P. Murphy, H.W. Ohm, B.G. Rossnagel, W. Yan, K.J. Miclaus, J. Hiller, P.J. Maughan, R.R. Redman Hulse, J.M. Anderson, E. Islamovic and E.W. Jackson. 2013. SNP discovery and chromosome anchoring provide the first physically-anchored hexaploid oat map and reveal synteny with model species. PLoS ONE 8: e58068. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0058068.

Hizbai, B.T., K.M. Gardner, C.P. Wight, R.K. Dhanda, S.J. Molnar, D. Johnson, J. Frégeau-Reid, W. Yan, B.G. Rossnagel, J. Holland and N.A. Tinker. 2012. Quantitative trait loci affecting oil content, oil composition, and other agronomically important traits in oat. The Plant Genome 5: 164-175. DOI: 10.3835/plantgenome2012.07.0015.

Luo, X., C.P. Wight, Y. Zhou and N.A. Tinker. 2012. Characterization of Chromosome-Specific Genomic DNA from Hexaploid Oat. Genome 55: 265-268. DOI: 10.1139/g2012-011.

Luo, X., N.A. Tinker, X. Fana, H. Zhang, L. Sha, H. Kang, C. Ding, J. Liu, L. Zhang, R. Yang and Y. Zhou. 2012. Phylogeny and maternal donor of Kengyilia species (Poaceae: Triticeae) based on three cpDNA (matK, rbcL and trnH-psbA) sequences. Biochemical Systematics and Ecology 44: 61-69. DOI: 10.1016/j.bse.2012.04.004.

Nava, I.C., C.P. Wight, M.T. Pacheco, L.C. Federizzi and N.A. Tinker. 2012. Tagging and mapping candidate loci for vernalization and flower initiation in hexaploid oat. Mol. Breeding 30: 1295-1312. DOI: 10.1007/s11032-012-9715-x.

Rampitsch, C., N.A. Tinker, R. Subramaniam, S. Barkow-Oesterreicher and E. Laczko. 2012. Phosphoproteome profile of Fusarium graminearum grown in vitro under nonlimiting conditions. Proteomics 12: 1002-1005. DOI: 10.1002/pmic.201100065.

Molnar, S.J., N.A. Tinker, H.F. Kaeppler and H.W. Rines. 2011. Molecular Genetics of Oat Quality. In: F. H. Webster and P. J. Wood, editors, Oats: Chemistry and Technology, 2nd edition. American Association of Cereal Chemists, St. Paul, MN. ISBN: 978-1-891127-64-9.

Newell, M.A., D. Cook, N.A. Tinker and J.L. Jannink. 2011. Population structure and linkage disequilibrium in oat (Avena sativa L.): implications for genome-wide association studies. Theor Appl Genet 122: 623–632. DOI: 10.1007/s00122-010-1474-7.

Oliver, R.E., G.R. Lazo, J.D. Lutz, M.J. Rubenfield, N.A. Tinker, N.H. Wisniewski Morehead, D. Adhikary, E.N. Jellen, P.J. Maughan, J.M. Anderson, G.L. Brown Guedira, S. Chao, A.D. Beattie, M.L. Carson, H.W. Rines, D.E. Obert, J.M. Bonman and E.W. Jackson. 2011. Model SNP development for complex genomes based on hexaploid oat using high-throughput 454 sequencing technology. BMC Genomics 12: 77. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2164-12-77.

Xu, Y., C. Badea, F. Tran, M. Frick, D. Schneiderman, L. Robert, L. Harris, D. Thomas, N. Tinker, D. Gaudet and A. Laroche. 2011. Next Gen sequencing of the transcriptome of triticale. Plant Genetic Resources: Characterization and Utilization 9: 181-184. DOI: 10.1017/S1479262111000281.

Tinker, N.A. 2010. SPAGHETTI: simulation software to test genetic mapping programs. J Hered 101: 257-259. DOI: 10.1093/jhered/esp109.

Wight, C.P., W. Yan, J. Mitchell Fetch, J. Deyl and N.A. Tinker. 2010. A Set of New Simple Sequence Repeat and Avenin DNA Markers Suitable for Mapping and Fingerprinting Studies in Oat (Avena spp.). Crop Sci. 50: 1207-1218. DOI: 10.2135/cropsci2009.09.0474.

Tinker, N.A., A. Kilian, C.P. Wight, K. Heller-Uszynska, P. Wenzl, H.W. Rines, A. Bjornstad, C.J. Howarth, J.L. Jannink, J.M. Anderson, B.G. Rossnagel, D.D. Stuthman, M.E. Sorrells, E.W. Jackson, S. Tuvesson, F.L. Kolb, O. Olsson, L.C. Federizzi, M.L. Carson, H.H. Ohm, S.J. Molnar, G.J. Scoles, P.E. Eckstein, J.M. Bonman, A. Ceplitis and T. Langdon. 2009. New DArT markers for oat provide enhanced map coverage and global germplasm characterization. BMC Genomics 10: 39. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2164-10-39.

Zhang, L.Y., S. Marchand, N.A. Tinker and F. Belzile. 2009. Population structure and linkage disequilibrium in barley assessed by DArT markers. Theor. Appl. Genet. 119: 43-52. DOI: 10.1007/s00122-009-1015-4.

Tinker, N.A. 2008. Plant Breeding. In: J. C. Neal Stewart, editor Plant Biotechnology and Genetics: Principles, Techniques and Applications. Wiley and Sons, New York. p. 47-82.